News from the World of Skiing 

  Podladtchikov and Buaas best in Saas-Fee half-pipe ... more

  Reiteralm to host Levi slaloms ... more

  European Cup Opening back indoors ... more

  Now available: Fascination Ski Jumping, a must-have book for jumping fans ... more


 Inside FIS 

  Main Decisions of FIS Council at annual Autumn Meeting in Bariloche (ARG) ... more

  FIS Medical Committee Educational Series: Part 4

Children in competitive sports - Clinical implications ... more


 In Depth 

  First-ever Alpine Skiing French National Championships indoors ... more

  Ambitious ski hall planned in Iceland ... more


 In Depth 

  FIS Staff Member in Portrait - Kathrin Hostettler ... more


 News from the World of Skiing 

Podladtchikov and Buaas best in Saas-Fee half-pipe
Saas Fee men's winners
Excellent conditions in Saas-Fee (SUI)

Switzerland's Iouri Podladtchikov and Norway's Kjersti Buaas won the second half-pipe contest in the NOKIA Snowboard FIS World Cup 2007/2008 held in excellent conditions in Saas-Fee (SUI) last Friday. Podladtchikov took the lead already in the qualification and showed the best run of the day in the second final round with a FS 1080 and a Cap 1080 manoeuvres. It was the career-first victory for the Russian-Swiss dual citizen, who also claimed the lead in the FIS World Cup half-pipe ranking. On the ladies' side, Kjersti Buaas celebrated her first World Cup victory in more than five years. With a clean run, she left Chen Xu of China and the reigning World Champion Manuela Laura Pesko (SUI) behind. Pesko, who won the World Cup opening event in Cardrona (NZE) in August, maintained her yellow leader's jersey.

The semi-finals and finals on Friday were preceded by the qualification on Thursday, and a FIS European Cup half-pipe earlier in the week. "It was really great being in Saas Fee all week. Our sincere thanks go to the Organizing Committee that delivered truly first-class conditions for the competitions by shaping two pipes in the same spot. It made it very easy for us to organize training and competition for the over 150 EC riders and 100 WC riders," commented Marcel Looze, FIS Race Director for Snowboard.

The NOKIA Snowboard FIS World Cup will continue with a big air event in Stockholm (SWE) on Saturday, 17th November, 2007.

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Reiteralm to host Levi slaloms
Reiteralm at night
Reiteralm ladies' SC winners 2006
Photo: Agence Zoom

The Audi FIS Alpine World Cup slalom competitions scheduled in Levi (FIN) for this coming weekend had to be canceled due to poor snow conditions and unfavorable weather forecasts. The events have been re-scheduled at Reiteralm (AUT), with the ladies' race taking place on Saturday, and the men's on Sunday as originally planned. Both days, the competitions will start at 10:00 CET for the first run, with the second run following at 13:00 CET.

Levi, situated north of the Arctic Circle in Finnish Lapland, is the northernmost venue on the FIS World Cup circuit. ""We all worked hard but the weather played against us this time. It has not been so warm here in early November since the mid-1960s," explained Janne Leskinen, Alpine Director with the Finnish Ski Association. Reiteralm also stepped in to pick up races last season as Val d'Isere (FRA) and St. Moritz (SUI) struggled with poor snow conditions.

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European Cup Opening back indoors
SnowWorld Landgraaf (NED)
Ski Hall Neuss

After a one year break, the opening of the FIS European Cup Alpine Skiing will return indoors. The men will kick off their season in the SnowWorld in Landgraaf (NED) on 8th-9th November while the ladies' season will start on 9th-10th November in the ski halls of Bottrop and, for the first time, Neuss (GER), respectively. All four slalom events will be conducted as three-run slaloms: the first two runs will be raced according to the normal slalom rules while only the 30 best after two runs will qualify for the third and last run. European Cup points will be awarded for the top 30 of the combined two competition results, with the winner receiving 100 points, 2nd place 80 points, 3rd place 60 and so on.

Markus Waldner, FIS Continental Cup Coordinator commented: "The indoor races are back on the calendar for many reasons, including at the request of the teams. Early November tends to be a good time period for a first competition test, following the return from the glaciers but before most ski areas are open. Many teams have also held testing sessions on the various indoor slopes and are therefore well-prepared for this special environment. Moreover, it should not be forgotten that the ski halls in the Netherlands and Northern Germany are also located near a large potential fan base and market for skiing."

A continuation of the indoor races is already planned for the 2008/09 European Cup season. This is likely to take the form of a series of 3-4 races in three different ski halls. The challenge of skiing inside may be different than outside, but certainly has its benefits. The indoor races two seasons ago were dominated by some young Swedes unknown at the time but have since become leading World Cup athletes including Hans Olsson and Andre Myhrer!

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Now available: Fascination Ski Jumping, a must-have book for jumping fans

Ski Jumping - attraction for millions of spectators and a spectacular sport! A new book entitled Fascination Ski Jumping in English or Skispringen Kompakt in German was published on 1st November. Written by Dirk Thiele, also known as the "voice of Ski Jumping" on German Eurosport, and including expert commentary by Michael Uhrmann (GER), World and Olympic Champion, the book offers a glimpse into the inner circles of the Ski Jumping world. Dirk Thiele, the winner of multiple journalistic awards including the FIS Journalist Prize, has used his in-depth knowledge of the sport to put together this must-have book for any Ski Jumping fan. Special features include 21 full page pictures of some of the best-known jumping stars and a "A to Z of Ski Jumping" as well as historical accounts on the development of the hill facilities and jumping equipment. The book is available in English and German, and can be ordered e.g. through www.amazon.de for _12.95.

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 Inside FIS 

Main Decisions of FIS Council at annual Autumn Meeting in Bariloche (ARG)

This year, the FIS Council gathered in the Southern hemisphere for its traditional Autumn Meeting which took place on Monday, 5th November 2007. Convening in Bariloche (ARG), one the country's leading ski resorts and host to the 1976 FIS Congress, at the invitation of the Argentinean Ski Association, the Council made several important decisions. For a summary of the Council's decisions, please click here; the Short Summary of the most important Council Decisions will be sent to all National Ski Associations shortly.

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FIS Medical Committee Educational Series: Part 4

Children in competitive sports - Clinical implications

The fourth article in the FIS Medical Committee Educational Series, entitled Children in competitive sports - Clinical implications written by Rasmus Damsgaard (DEN), member of the FIS Medical Committee, is now available. This paper looks at the relationship between intensive training and growth around the time of puberty. It suggests setting a training limit of 15 hours per week, above which careful monitoring should be undertaken.

In case of symptoms such as restricted growth and delayed puberty, clinical treatment should first exclude constitutional factors and disease as causes. Then, the intensity of training should be reduced - this has been shown to allow for a quick improvement in the tempo of growth and the onset of puberty. Such a response is particularly important in sports where aesthetics play a role and low body weight is considered an advantage, as in gymnastics. In all sports, however, training should be designed according to the pubertal development of an individual athlete as the timing and tempo of puberty varies significantly among adolescents.

To read or download the complete article, please click here.

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 Member News 

First-ever Alpine Skiing French National Championships indoors
Julien Lizeroux
Photo: Agence Zoom
Ladies podium
Photo: Agence Zoom

The first edition of the Indoor French Championships in Alpine Skiing, the Trophy Caisse d'Epargne, took place this week in the ski hall of Amneville-les-Thermes en Moselle. Except for the French speed teams heading to North America shortly, some fifty members of the French national teams, both ladies and men, competed.

In the -3C temperature, the 500-meter-long piste was perfectly prepared and the championships were staged as one-on-one duels among the best 16 ladies and men who qualified based on two early morning runs. On the men's side, the historical title went to Julien Lizeroux ahead of Jean Baptiste Grange. In the ladies' event, Sandrine Aubert beat Nastasia Noens in the final.

The event turned out to be quite a media success, too. All the main French TV stations from TF1 to A2 and FR3 as well as Eurosport, Sport+ and 8 Mont Blanc were present and TF1 featured live transmission in the 1 PM news. The leading print media were also represented in large numbers.

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Ambitious ski hall planned in Iceland
Planned Ulfarsfell ski hall

Following on the heels of the victory in this year's FIS Alpine Skiing Australia - New Zealand Cup (ANC)˙by Bj”rgvin Bj”rgvinsson, the Icelandic Ski Association is making plans to develop skiing in the country. As a main target, it plans to send a group of five athletes to the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver.

A development highlight, the Association is preparing a very ambitious project known as the Ski House that would include a full-length, World Cup level slalom slope indoors. The slope is planned to be built into a hill known as Ulfarsfell in the heart of the Reykjavik region and it would sport a vertical drop of 180 meters and a length of over 800 meters. Lift capacity is planned for over 4000 people an hour with variable slopes for both beginners and advanced skiers. Discussions are currently underway with the Reykjavik Municipality with opening planned in the Autumn of 2010. To get an idea of the project, click here to view a fly-through video.

"We are also very happy that Cross-Country and Roller Skiing are growing as recreational sports here in Iceland. Last year almost 100 Icelanders competed in the Vasaloppet in Sweden and all the popular cross-country races here as well as children's races had more participants than ever before," commented Danˇel Jakobsson, President of the Association. "The Association has also moved its offices from Reykjavik to Akureyri where the ski resort has grown significantly, including building a new snow-making system and several lifts."

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 In Depth 

FIS Staff Member in Portrait - Kathrin Hostettler
Kathrin Hostettler

We continue our series of brief portraits of key FIS staff. These are intended to help you know who to contact for what and to provide some more background on who you might already be working with in the FIS Office in Oberhofen (SUI). This week in focus: Kathrin Hostettler, FIS Freestyle & Snowboard Assistant.

FIS Newsflash: What is your area of responsibility in the FIS Office?

Kathrin Hostettler: Essentially, I am the first point of contact within the FIS Office for administrative questions related to Freestyle Skiing and Snowboard. This includes calendar entries, World Cup organizer agreements, questions related to the FIS Technical Delegates or FIS points. I also provide general support to the FIS Snowboard Race Director Marcel Looze and FIS Freestyle Coordinator Joe Fitzgerald, help prepare proposals for any rules changes and, of course, all materials for the FIS Spring and Autumn Meetings.

FIS Newsflash: How did you come to work for FIS?

Kathrin Hostettler: I originally responded to a FIS job announcement in the Thuner Amtsanzeiger in the winter of 1991. FIS was looking for someone to manage the Freestyle Skiing secretariat. I started on 1st April 1991, after the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in Saalbach (AUT). I am a native of Thun and some of my family live in Oberhofen so I was pleased to have found this job. It was a good match otherwise, too, since I am an avid alpine skier - even competed in my youth - and I like all kinds of sport. A few years later, in the season of 1994-95, Snowboard was added into the FIS program and came to be administered together with Freestyle Skiing. So I've been part of its development from the very beginning.

FIS Newsflash: What do you enjoy most, at your FIS work and outside of it?

Kathrin Hostettler: Probably the best part of my job is that it is very diverse, no day is like another. I also appreciate the contact with many different people and nationalities, and the fact that I can work independently. Naturally it is nice to be able to travel to the races or FIS Meetings on a regular basis. I have especially fond memories from the FIS Congress in Rio de Janeiro (BRA) in 1994, and from the Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City (USA) in 2002; both were events with a very special atmosphere. Even after 16.5 years, I still like my job!

In my free time, I enjoy swimming, aerobics, hiking and skiing. I also like to read, especially Noelle Roberts's novels. And I like the sun, both in the mountains and at the sea. Recently, I have to admit, I have chosen to head South during my holidays rather than to the mountains. But then, I do see the beautiful Bernese Alps from my office window every day!

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