USA Cycling announced today the 37 remaining athletes that have been nominated to represent the United States at the upcoming 2008 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships in Val di Sole, Italy, July 15-22.
With only a little more than two months remaining until the Olympic Games in Beijing, American cross country athletes will square off against fellow 2008 hopefuls from across the globe in the only Olympic discipline of off-road cycling. Six men and seven women have been nominated to the elite cross country squad.
Cross Country athletes
Adam Craig received the only automatic nomination to the men's team as a top-15 ranked American male in the UCI rankings. He is joined by Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski, Todd Wells, Jeremiah Bishop, Michael Broderick and Sam Schultz, who all received discretionary nominations.
On the women's side, Georgia Gould and Mary McConneloug were automatically nominated - Gould by virtue of her podium performances at UCI World Cup events this year in Houffalize and Madrid and McConneloug due to her eighth-place UCI ranking. Heather Irmiger, Willow Koerber, Sue Haywood, Lea Davison and Kelli Emmett all received discretionary nominations based upon international results.
In the gravity events, Kyle Strait, J.D. Swanguen, Duncan Riffle, Cole Bangert, Cody Warren, Kain Leonard and Lars Steinberg received discretionary nominations to the elite men's downhill team. As the winner of the UCI downhill contest at the Chile Challenge in Angel Fire, New Mexico, Melissa Buhl received the only automatic nomination to the elite women's downhill squad. Kathy Pruitt will join her as a discretionary selection.
Due to their medal performances at the 2007 world championships, Brian Lopes and Buhl both received automatic nominations to the elite men's and women's 4-cross teams. Ross Milan, Mike Haderer, Erik Nelson and Blake Carney will join Lopes on the men's 4-cross squad as discretionary selections. Neven Steinmetz will join Buhl on the women's team as a discretionary pick. Jessica Vogt received a discretionary selection, but declined her nomination.
Kevin Aiello, Naish Ulmer, Joseph Schusler, Taylor Borucki, Dustin Belcher, Graeme Pitts and Geoffrey Ulmer were also named to the junior men's downhill squad.
Twelve junior and U23 cross country athletes were previously named to the 2008 UCI Mountain Bike World Championship squad that will represent the United States.
2008 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships
Val di Sole, Italy: July 15-22, 2008
U.S. Team Nominations:
Elite Men's Cross Country
Adam Craig, Todd Wells, Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski, Jeremiah Bishop, Michael Broderick, and Sam Schultz
Elite Women's Cross Country
Mary McConneloug, Georgia Gould, Willow Koerber, Heather Irmiger, Sue Haywood, Lea Davison, and Kelli Emmett
Elite Men's Downhill
Kyle Strait, J.D. Swanguen, Duncan Riffle, Cole Bangert, Cody Warren, Kain Leonard, and Lars Steinberg
Elite Women's Downhill
Melissa Buhl and Kathy Pruitt
Elite Men's 4X
Brian Lopes, Ross Milan, Mike Haderer, Erik Nelson, and Blake Carney
Elite Women's 4X
Melissa Buhl, Neven Steinmetz, Jessica Vogt*
Junior Men's Downhill
Kevin Aiello, Naish Ulmer, Joseph Schusler, Taylor Borucki, Dustin Belcher, Graeme Pitts, Geoffrey Ulmer
© BikeRadar & USA Cycling 2008