FIS President Kasper’s vision for the next four years
Welcome to the 500th edition of FIS Newsflash. Such milestones are a perfect opportunity to both reflect on the past and look ahead to the future. It is with a sense of satisfaction for the accomplishments of International Ski Federation that I look back at my last term as President, but it is also with a great desire to further evolve our organisation and sports that I look ahead at the next four years.
There have been many significant milestones for FIS, including the successful introduction of several new events on the programme of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games and the conclusion of long-term sponsor agreements, thereby securing stability for the organisation.
But there is no time to remain idle as there is always much work to be done to ensure that our sport continues to grow and prosper. It is with great determination that I look forward to the challenges that lie ahead in the next four years.
Professional organisation of our sport and sponsorship go hand-in-hand and I cannot stress enough the importance that our loyal sponsors and partners play in helping all of our disciplines develop
Looking ahead to the future, there is no doubt that getting the next generation of skiers and snowboarders out on the slopes will be of paramount importance. Again, the market is flooded with activities competing for the attention of children, teens and families. Though the Bring Children to the Snow Campaign and World Snow Day, FIS has taken some very important first steps in reaching out to this very important group. While the campaigns have enjoyed record numbers in the last year, we must continue to make this a priority for the health of skiing and snowsports worldwide.
FIS has made important strides in the area of safety through the FIS Injury Surveillance System, which continues to command high priority in our activities. Different projects have been implemented in several FIS disciplines to try to reduce the number of injuries. Safety of the athletes will always play an important role in our activities.
We have an exciting four years on the competition calendar ahead as well. This season, the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships will make a return to North America in Vail/Beaver Creek, Colorado. This is an important chance to gain attention for Alpine Skiing in a market with perhaps the most potential. In addition, the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships will be hosted in Falun (SWE), another market and region with enormous potential.
Finally, I am looking forward this season to the very first combined Freestyle Skiing and Snowboarding World Championship in Kreischberg (AUT). As we saw in Sochi, there is great interest in these two disciplines and by combining them in the same World Championship event, it can only continue to build interest in buzz in the events that have captured the imagination of the next generation of athletes.
Naturally, the 2017 World Ski Championships are also starting to hit full stride in their preparations, as well as the highly-anticipated 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang (KOR). These events are sure to keep skiing in the spotlight through the next four years in addition giving FIS the chance to show its disciplines and athletes in the best possible light.
It is sure to be four years that holds much promise, but it will also take much work with the entire FIS family working together to ensure that we continue to enjoy success.