Guide to the Olympics: Moguls

The precursor to slopestyle, moguls are as close as you will get to watching off-axis 720’s. Twenty-three year old American mogul skier Hannah Kearney seems like a promising gold medal pick for the event, held at Cyprus Mountain, just 20 miles from Vancouver.
Olympic Moguls

Since slopestyle skiing isn’t an Olympic sport yet (it’s rumored to be on its way for 2014), moguls are as close as you’ll get to watching skiers perform mute grabs and off-axis 720s at the 2010 Games. But the tricks, performed on two “air bumps” staged near the top and bottom of a steep mogul field, are throwback versions of what you’ll see in the Winter X Games. In moguls, daffies and back scratchers are still considered modern tricks, and judges call 360s by their original name, helicopters. Moguls got its start in the 1960s in the U.S. and became an Olympic event in 1992 in Albertville, France. Here’s how it works: Athletes pick one of three or four different lines down the course and throw the tricks of their choice off the jumps. The winner is the one who combines the fastest time, the best turns, and the most difficult and technically correct tricks, according to a team of judges. The moguls event, as well as aerials, ski cross, snowboard cross, and snowboard halfpipe, will take place at Cyprus Mountain, a small ski area 20 miles from Vancouver.

One to Watch: Hannah Kearney, American Prodigy

There are four things you need to know about American mogul skier Hannah Kearney (left). (1) Her last name is pronounced “carny,” as in the toothless guy who operates your favorite roller coaster. (2) She won her first World Cup event in 2004, when she was just 17 years old. (3) Now 23, she’s the current World Cup moguls champ. (4) At the 2006 Games, she placed a disappointing 22nd, but this year, assuming she makes the Olympic qualifying cuts in late January, she’s going for gold. “I have more training, more experience,” says Kearney. “I’m going there to win a gold medal. But I can’t make any promises.”

Also, check out a guide to:


Ski Cross



Lindsey Vonn

Guide to the Olympics: Downhill

Like thoroughbred racing but with more cowbells, downhill races seem to be the most captivating event at the Olympics. Go to watch the Austrians and ski racing’s favorite girl, Lindsey Vonn.

Ski Cross

Guide to the Olympics: Ski Cross

Welcome to the throwdown, year one, also known as ski cross. A Winter X Games event since 1998, ski cross premieres this year as an event in the Winter Olympics. If you are wondering about gold, make sure to watch the two former ski racers, Daron Rahlves and Casey Puckett, participating in the event.

Jean-Baptiste Grange

Guide to the Winter Olympics: Slalom Ski

It’s all about precision. And personality. Historically slalom racers have gone on to become racecar drivers, actors, and even personalities branded with their own perfume line. Check out our picks for racers we think might podium or have a future in Hollywood.

Patrick Deneen

Five-Question Interview: Patrick Deneen

Get ready to hear the name Patrick Deneen a lot around the middle of February, because the Washington state-based mogul skier is gearing up to dominate at the Vancouver Olympics. Heather Hansman talked to him about heated rivalries, getting hated on by the judges, and his least favorite Olympic sport.

Ski Cross

Dear Ski Cross. Welcome to the Olympics

The U.S. Ski Cross Team consists of two guys: Daron Rahlves and Casey Puckett, both retired ski racers. We caught up with them while they were training in Telluride in preparation for the Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

Jean-Baptiste Grange

Winter Olympics Event Calendar

Whether you're heading to Vancouver to watch the Olympics or just tuning in from your TV, we've got a schedule of the events you don't want to miss from February 12-28. And if you are traveling to watch the Games live, we've got some helpful pointers on where and when to eat, ski, and party.