2014 Winter Olympics

Jessica Jerome and Todd Lodwick Make History by Qualifying for 2014 Sochi Games

Jessica Jerome made history today and will be the first American female ski jumper to head to the Winter Olympics.
Jessica Jerome made history today and will be the first American female ski jumper to head to the Winter Olympics.Gene Sweeney Jr./Getty Images
Kevin McRaeFeatured ColumnistDecember 29, 2013

History was made in Park City, Utah, on Sunday afternoon, as the U.S. Olympic team sent its first ever woman ski jumper to the Winter Olympic games. 

Jessica Jerome scored something of an upset, holding off the favored Lindsey Van and Alissa Johnson to capture the U.S. ski jumping trials title and secure an automatic spot for the 2014 Sochi Games. With the victory, she became the first American female to qualify for the newly created event.

The International Olympic Committee only added the event in 2011, after a contingent of female athletes—led by Van—sued the body for discrimination. The 2014 Games will be the first to feature a woman's ski jump, and despite her loss today, Van is still a virtual lock to be selected for the team. 

In the men's ski jump, Nicholas Fairall qualified for his first ever Olympic Games by topping a field that included former Olympians Anders Johnson and Peter FrenetteFairall led the field after the first set of jumps and secured his slot with a 96 meter second attempt to leave the field well behind him.

In the men's nordic combined, Todd Lodwick proved that age is only but a number.

The 37-year-old was considered by many to be too old to be a legitimate contender to qualify for a record sixth Winter Olympics Games. But he proved the naysayers wrong, winning both the ski jump and cross-country portions of the nordic combined to book a record sixth ticket to represent his country in Sochi.



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