Recent FIS News
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Guenter Hujara in interview
As part of the weekly interview series “Chat with the FIS Race Directors”, Chief Race Director of the men’s Alpine Ski World Cup Guenter Hujara shares his insights on the current season.
FIS Newsflash: The men's Alpine Skiing season is well on its way. Which words would you use to describe it so far?
Guenter: “Excitement, excellence, challenge, weather, good moments.”
FIS Newsflash: Could you elaborate a bit?
Guenter: “To elaborate, we would have to take a look at the different stages of the season so far:
The first race of the year, traditionally in Austria’s Soelden is always interesting. It was tough, but we pulled it off in difficult weather conditions. In Levi, Finland, we were able to stage the race even in rainy conditions, after last year’s cancellation. Those were some of the good moments!
Heading over to North America, the first speed events of the season in Canada’s Lake Louise brought about a lot of excitement. In Beaver Creek, USA, the paradise of skiing, everything went extremely smoothly and it was a real season highlight. The weather and course conditions were excellent and the resort is very well prepared to stage the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in 2015.
Coming back to Europe, we found a really challenging situation with heavy snowfall up to two metres in Val d’Isère, France, but made the event happen. Under tough weather conditions also in Val Gardena, Italy, we were able to stage the race. These were additional good moments for us! Val Gardena was probably a crazy race with unexpected results but it turned out that our decisions were right.
In Alta Badia, Italy, the course conditions were very good and our final stage before Christmas was Madonna Di Campiglio where the competition went as scheduled. We have had exciting races so far and are looking forward to the next ones to come!”
FIS Newsflash: There have been a lot of talks about the new ski regulations which have been introduced this season. What’s your current feeling about it?
Guenter: “So far, after several completely different race profiles, course conditions and altitudes, I feel quite confident that the direction we took with the new specifications is the right one. It is still too early to say that everything is perfect. We will have to see how things develop throughout the season. The immediate feedback we receive from athletes, however, is much better than the media reports.
What we can already see is that some skiers are able to handle the new skis very well, probably better than others, especially on steep courses and in sharp turns. For example, in Alta Badia, we had huge time differences among the first podium spots. Watching how the athletes performed on this challenging course on their new skis was a good moment for Alpine ski sport and bodes for further exciting action throughout the season.”