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Shaun White will compete at Winter X Games

Shaun White

during the Snowboarding Slopestyle Final U.S. Olympic Qualification #3 at the 2014 Sprint U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix on January 16, 2014 in Mammoth, California.

Harry How

Shaun White is going to the Winter X Games after all.

White will compete in halfpipe and slopestyle in Aspen, Colo., this week, according to

The news came two weeks after White said he was unlikely to compete, which would have marked his first absence from the event this millennium.

White is an eight-time X Games halfpipe champion and five-time slopestyle champion in addition to a two-time Olympic gold medalist. He qualified for the U.S. Olympic Team in halfpipe and slopestyle last weekend in Mammoth Mountain, Calif.

White’s inclusion makes the men’s slopestyle final Saturday perhaps the most anticipated event this week. Canadian Mark McMorris, the two-time reigning Winter X Games champion, is expected to compete.

McMorris is also the Olympic gold-medal favorite. White, who won four straight slopestyle titles from 2003 to 2006, was fifth in slopestyle last year.

The halfpipe final is Sunday, and it could include every member of the U.S. Olympic Team as well as Olympic medal contenders Iouri Podladtchikov of Switzerland and Ayumu Hirano of Japan.

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