The United States ski and snowboard teams will now have one name instead of the usual three used in the past. Earlier this week, leaders of the snow sports decided to unite the two squads with the official title of “U.S. Ski & Snowboard.” The new name was designed to eliminate separation of the two sports, while letting all the Olympic athletes know that they are a part of the same team.
The teams’ national governing body, consisting of close to 50,000 members, made the decision to combine the units. America sends nearly 100 athletes to the Olympic games every four years. The process of re-naming the teams took nearly two years for all the members and athletes to come to an agreement.
In addition to the name change, America will now use a single logo. This is an adjustment from the three logos the teams have previously represented. With the new look, comes new social media channels. U.S. Ski and Snowboards plans on re-branding its social media accounts to reflect the recent changes made to the teams. Several different logos have been used throughout America’s 112-year history of competitions.
Another big reason for the changes may be sponsorship dollars. The joining of all three teams will give brands a larger exposure to possible new audiences. For instance, if K2 Snowboards signs on as a sponsor, it will be now be showcased throughout the snowboard and ski community. Each brand that signs on as a sponsor has the chance to completely alter its image and transcend across sports lines.
So far, America has nominated several athletes to represent the country at the upcoming 2018 games in PyeongChang. Premier athletes named to the team include Mikaela Shiffrin, Greg Bretz, Kyle Mack, and Jamie Anderson. Bode Miller was the most notable athlete that was not nominated. The Olympic gold medalist still has a chance to make the team, although it seems very unlikely with the games rapidly approaching.