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Recent FIS News
Below you will find a listing of recent FIS News
A look back at the EC season
Together, the FIS Alpine European Cup coordinators Markus Waldner and Janez Flere have 26 seasons of experience under their belts, Waldner 16 and Flere 10. Instead of complaining about the many changes in the racing schedule they have had to make as a result of the crazy weather this winter, both say they have experienced worse years and so far it's all going (almost) according to plan.
"This year we were able to always find some solutions for the cancelled races. I went back and looked at my archives, 1999 and 2007 were what I would call really difficult seasons," Waldner said when reached in Santa Caterina.
Flere, who is currently in San Candido (ITA) for two slaloms, agrees with Waldner.
"We had it almost the same as the men at the beginning. It was either no snow or too much snow at once that made it really hard to plan anything since weather was really unpredictable."
Both the men and ladies' races in Scandinavia were a "no go" this year. They tried really hard to make the races in Are (SWE) happen twice before having to move them elsewhere. Eventually the season opened in Zinal for the ladies and Trysil for the men.
"Eventually we pulled off some high quality races in great conditions," Waldner said.
Waldner has seen and worked on more than his fair share of races, but the great organization of the parallel event in San Vigilio this past December came as a breath of fresh air after months of hard work.
"The feedback I keep getting about that race is just amazing. Having an European Cup race shown on live TV, as if it was a World Cup event, proves we are doing a great job and I believe it is a format we will try to have more often during the season. Next year we hope to add at least two or three to the calendar. Who knows maybe in the future it could become also an event with a final standing - we will see how it is going to develop."
Flere is also proud of the fact that the two slaloms in San Candido will be shown on TV. He has 11 of the top 30 World Cup slalom girls at start over the next two days and believe that is a good thing for the EC circuit.
Waldner sums up the season in a simple way, "you cancel some - you move some."
"After some major rescheduling and moving things around, I am proud to say that we are only missing one downhill race, the one from Madonna di Campiglio. Everything else is as if we had perfect conditions all along. I have to thank everyone involved in the process, a lot of hard work from all sides involved was necessary so we could stay on track."
"I agree," Flere said. "Everyone is happy at the moment, we might not have done the races at the original venues, but we still did them. This sure requires an effort in first convincing a National Ski Association and venue to take over the races, then in the organizational and logistical aspects of changing the program for everyone involved in the process. I am awaiting confirmation on a few more events, but we hope to be no more than three races behind by the end of the season."
"This year there might not have been a star on the European Cup circuit, or at least no one as strong as Alexis Pinturault or Nolan Kasper last year. There have been different winners along the season," Waldner said. "I think the Russians have a good group preparing for Sochi, over the past couple of years I could see how they have grown as a team and some of these guys might really be ones to watch in 2014."
"It's different with the ladies, they are good at a younger age and we have '95 born skiers which are already making around 10 FIS points. The uncommon thing, same as on the men's side, is that this year there isn't anyone as dominant as in the previous years. Every race saw a different name on top and this is good for the future of the sport," Flere explained.
For more details, visit www.fisalpine.com
Contributed by Ana Jelusic