Park City to host ski jumping, Nordic combined championships

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— The U.S. Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined Championships will return to Park City, Utah, the U.S. Ski Team announced Friday.

The July 30 to Aug. 1 events will be held for the third straight time in the summer.

Olympic medalists Todd Lodwick, Johnny Spillane, Billy Demong and Brett Camerota are expected to compete in the Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined Championships.

“The summer events have been a great showcase for our sport and these amazing athletes,” U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association Nordic Director John Farra said in a news release. “The athletes love competing here, and it’s a major test for them to go head to head on the Olympic venues.”

The summer championships have been held the past two years in Lake Placid, N.Y. Now the scene shifts to the 2002 Olympic venues for a late July weekend extravaganza. The move also puts two jumps back onto the schedule with K-90 and K-120 plastic jumps available, which allows athletes to ski jump sans snow on a plastic surface, at the Utah Olympic Park.

The competition kicks off at 9 a.m. July 30 with the U.S. Ski Jumping Championship for men and women on the K-90 Olympic jump. Nick Alexander and Jessica Jerome are the defending U.S. champions.

Among the favorites in the jump will be two-time Olympian Anders Johnson, who grew up skiing at the Utah Olympic Park.

On Aug. 1, the K-120 big hill will be on tap for jumping, along with the official U.S. Nordic Combined Championship. Jumping will begin at 9 a.m. with ski jumping titles on the line for men and women. The Nordic combined finale will shift down to the paved roller-ski trails of Soldier Hollow near Midway with a 6 p.m. start for the 10-kilometer title round. Lodwick is the defending U.S. champion.

“It’s a program with new blood, new drive and awesome direction,” Lodwick said. “I would love to put another national title under my belt. But to see where the talent is today is great — who’s going to take up the oars and keep rowing down the river.”

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