USA Cycling named 35 athletes as potential Olympians for all cycling disciplines. The federation selected eligible athletes, including six men and five women, per its nomination process for the men's and women's mountain bike team. The US had previously qualified to send two men and two women to Beijing for the Olympic Games in August 2008.
The five top-ranked male mountain bikers made the cut based on their UCI rankings including Adam Craig (16th), Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski (28th), Todd Wells (32nd), Jeremiah Bishop (37th) and Michael Broderick (59th). Sam Schultz, ranked 75th in the world and the next best American, received the only discretionary nomination.
On the women's side, the four automatic nominations were Georgia Gould (ranked sixth) and Mary McConneloug (seventh), Willow Koerber (11th) and Heather Irmiger (26th) with Sue Haywood as the sole discretionary nomination. She finished the year ranked 47th in the world as the next-best American.