Courtesy Ralph Lauren
Gus Kenworthy is switching sides.
On Wednesday, it was announced the Olympic skier will not be representing the United States Ski and Snowboard team in the 2022 Olympics in Beijing. He will be representing Great Britain’s GB Snowsport instead.
According to GB Snowsport’s announcement, Kenworthy requested to be released from the U.S. team in order to compete elsewhere. The Olympic silver-medalist was born in Chelmsford, Essex, has an English-born mother and a U.K. passport, so he qualifies to play for the team across the pond.
In his own statement regarding the switch, the American Horror Story: 1984 actor said playing for Great Britain is a dream come true. As his statement reads, “This is a great opportunity for me to start again and compete in three events in 2022. I have strong roots in the UK and have been close with many of the athletes. For me, this is an incredible opportunity to join a first-class team and I believe we will be able to deliver great results.”
As his comments continued, “I am also doing this for my mother who was born and lived in the UK for much of her life, she has always been my greatest supporter throughout my career. She taught me to ski when I was three years old and is the reason I compete today. It’s great to now be representing GB – a country which means so much to me and my family.”
To round out his statement, Kenworthy assured he didn’t come upon this decision lightly. “During my downtime, it was important for me to take a step back and contemplate my next move and now that is resolved I am looking forward to training and getting in condition for the upcoming season.”
In a follow up statement, Chief Executive Officer of GB Snowsport Vicky Gosling said, “When a world-renowned athlete like Gus makes himself available to compete for GB Snowsport it is really exciting, but we wanted assurances around Gus’ desire as his life outside snowsport has become much busier.”
“We have met with Gus numerous times and found that we are completely on the same page,” the statement continued. “Gus understands that we have an incredibly talented squad and that means places are competitive. It is incredibly exciting to have him in our ranks and I think it goes to show the level that GB Snowsport has reached in a short space of time. The inclusion of Gus in our squad can only raise our level of performance and make us even more competitive.”
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