Dylan Ferguson will have some Olympic-themed horror stories to tell.
The Amesbury native learned yesterday that he was left off the United States Olympic team after spending the last three years as the nation’s top men’s aerial skier. World Cup Rookie of the Year Mac Bohonnon earned the lone spot on the men’s aerials team after earning a second-place finish in the fourth Olympic qualifier in Vale St. Come in Quebec City.
Ferguson was the most consistent American aerialist in the five qualifiers, but he did not have a podium finish to match Bohonnon. Because of International Ski Federation rules that state Olympic freestyle skiing rosters can only include a maximum of 26 skiers, the U.S. Olympic Committee had to make difficult cuts yesterday.
Although the committee only selected one men’s aerial skier along with two women, four Americans were selected in both slopestyle and halfpipe.
When contacted by The Daily News yesterday, Ferguson had little to say about the committee’s decision.
“I’d rather not talk right now,” Ferguson said. “I’d rather wait a little while before I say anything.”
Ferguson took the high road in a Facebook page last night.
“Pretty surreal day,” Ferguson wrote. “Unfortunately found out that I will not be going to Sochi to represent USA aerials in the 2014 Olympics. I just missed the cut due to the official criteria set forth by the US Olympic Committee, and only one male will be going for our sport. Congrats to my teammate Mac Bohonnon on his spot, I wish you all the best over there. Thank you to all of my coaches, teammates, friends, family, sponsors, etc, who have been behind me throughout this long journey. I don’t know what the future holds for me and my skiing career, but I appreciate all of the support. Thank you.”
Ferguson, 25, is the top U.S. men’s aerialist in World Cup standings and ranks 10th overall this season, four spots ahead of Bohonnon. He also experienced his share of Olympic heartache in 2010. He was named to the 2010 Olympic Team but was forced to pull out due to complications from an appendectomy. He gave his spot to best friend Scotty Bahrke.
Ferguson watched the Opening Ceremony from a hospital bed, where he struggled to maintain his weight. Bahrke wrote Ferguson’s name on his skis when he competed in 2010.
The U.S. is sending its smallest contingent of moguls and aerials skiers to the Olympics since aerials was added in 1994. Four American men made the team in 2010.