|News from the World of Skiing|
|News from the World of Skiing|
Photo: Erich Spiess
|Schlierenzauer and Schmitt |
Photo: Erich Spiess
The Euro 2008, the FIFA European Championships in football are dominating the news coverage around Central Europe and beyond these days. With the final games of the qualification rounds taking place today Wednesday, especially the hosting nations Austria and Switzerland are overflowing with thousands of excited fans from all around the continent.
In conjunction with Monday's classic football duel between Germany and Austria in Vienna, the Ski Jumping teams of the two nations delivered a team challenge on the Bergisel hill in Innsbruck. Staged in a knock-out format similar to what is used at the Four-Hills-Tournament just an hour before the start of the game, five pairs of jumpers competed in two rounds at the stadium which also serves as an official Innsbruck Fan Zone or public viewing arena. More than 15'000 fans created a fantastic atmosphere for the promotional event where Germany beat the hosting team 3:2 (in the actual game, Germany won 1:0 against Austria). The Austrians jumped without the World Cup winner Thomas Morgenstern who is injured.
"It was just awesome," commented Gregor Schlierenzauer who together with Wolfgang Loitzl secured the points for the dominating team of the last season. On the German side, Michael Uhrmann, Stephan Hocke and Georg Sp„th brought home the winning points for the somewhat surprising victory.
Includes contributions by OeSV
|Photo: Robert Kwong|
The files of the four cities interested in hosting the first edition of the Winter Youth Olympic Games (Winter YOG), to be held in 2012, are due at the International Olympic Committee on Thursday, 19th June. The candidates, nominated by their National Olympic Committees, are: Harbin (CHN), Innsbruck (AUT), Kuopio (FIN) and Lillehammer (NOR).
As with the first edition of the Summer YOG, the first staging of Winter YOG in 2012 will have to be planned and organized in a very short period of time. In order to maximize the time allocated to the future host city to plan and organize the event in 2012, the candidate procedure is operating on a tight schedule. Once the cities submit their files, the IOC will have a panel of experts review the bids. A short list from the IOC Executive Board is expected on 4th August and a report by the official evaluation commission at end of October, followed by a recommendation by the IOC Executive Board to be submitted to the IOC members in November. The members will then elect the host city by a postal vote in November, whilst the result is scheduled to be announced in December 2008.
The election of the host cities for the 2nd Summer YOG in 2014 and the 2nd Winter YOG in 2016 will be held exceptionally at the IOC Session in February 2010 in Vancouver.
|Ingrid Jacquemod presenting|
Photo: OC Val d'Isere 2009
With just 226 days remaining, it comes as no surprise that the organizing committee of the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships is very busy with the operational preparations for the event. For obvious reasons, the athletes of the French alpine ski team are one of the main partners for the organizing committee. However, the star athletes, former, established and upcoming, from other sports can also do wonders in promoting the skiing highlight of the upcoming season. To that effect, the 2009 organizing committee took the opportunity to present next February's World Championships to the so-called French `Stars of Sport' (Les Etoiles du Sport) who convened for their summer academy in La Palmyre on the French Atlantic Coast for four days from 9th-13th June.
Existing since 2002 under the patronage of the French Minister for Sports, the Stars of Sport program has brought together the French sporting elite for reunions twice a year. The main goal of this concept with athletic, human and educational goals is to build partnerships between the young athletic talents with the great champions for knowledge transfer and networking purposes. The French ski team was among those present along with Stephane Diagana (athletics), Edgard Grospiron (freestyle skiing), Philippe Gardent and Jackson Richardson (handball). Val d'IsŠre's own champion, Ingrid Jacquemod, too, had a chance to explain what these Championships mean for France and for French skiing.
The presentation in La Palmyre was just one of the activities taking place under the broad cooperation the Val d'IsŠre 2009 organizing committee has set up with the French Ski Association and its teams. For the French skiers, the home championships understandably represent an important goal as well as a great chance to promote skiing in their entire nation.
At the Worldloppet Annual General Meeting in Mora (SWE) on 13th June, 2008, Angelo Corradini was re-elected as Secretary General of Worldloppet for another four years. The re-election was ratified by the Worldloppet Ski Federation, the association that includes the worlds largest organizers of ski marathons and mobilizes more than 100000 skiers every year.
59-year-old Corradini is the marketing director of the Marcialonga, the Italian race included into the Worldloppet calendar, and secretary general of the Val di Fiemme organizing committee elected as host of the 2013 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships. A Castello di Fiemme native, Corradini is one of the 2600 Masters who have done the tour around the World participating in the Worldloppet races.
The Mora Annual General Meeting also accepted the Polish race Bieg Piastόw as a new Worldloppet member. This old race is well-known amongst long distance skiers, and has been member of Euroloppet for many years. Taking place in Jakuszyce, near the small city of Szklarska Poręba in south-western Poland close to the Czech border on the second weekend in March, it includes 50 and 23 km classical technique races and a 25 km free technique race. The previous extension of the Worldloppet occurred in 2000 when Jizerská Padesátka (CZE) became member. The addition of Bieg Piastόw brings the number of members to exactly 15 races.
With the new member, the requirement for the Global Worldloppet Skier - a prestigious recognition for those who have skied all Worldloppet events adopted in 2007 - will also increase to 15 races beginning with the 2008-2009 season. Those who have participated in an event at all 14 old venues before Kangaroohoppet 2008 are entitled to the GWLS. The others must add Bieg Piastόw to the list of the lacking races. For more info, visit www.worldloppetskier.com.
|Carl Eric St†lberg |
The 73rd L„nderkonferenz of the Austrian Ski Association is scheduled to take place in St. Johann im Pongau on 20th-21st June. The session will begin with a festive evening on Friday where the many successful athletes and officials will be honored. Several Austrian ski stars, including Benjamin Raich, Hannes Reichelt, Niki Hosp, Marlies Schild, Thomas Morgenstern, Gregor Schlierenzauer, Andreas Kofler, Martin Koch, Stefan Gimpl, Benjamin Karl and Heidi Neururer, will be on site, meeting with their fans and visiting local schools before the evening ceremonies.
The general assembly will be held on Saturday when the most important agenda items include the election of the Association's president and the council for the 2008-2011 period.
At the same time, on 20th -21st June, the French Ski Association will be holding its general assembly in Grenoble (FRA). The successful and retiring athletes including Antoine Deneriaz, Delphine Peretto and Julien Robert will be honored during the official gala evening (Soir‚e Officielle) on Friday.
While the Swedish Ski Association general assembly will only take place in December in conjunction with the Association's 100-year jubilee, it was announced this week that Carl Eric St†lberg will use that opportunity to step down as president after a 12-year tenure. After 22 years in the Association, he considers that it is time to let younger generations take charge. Just re-elected as FIS Vice President at the FIS Congress in Cape Town, Mr. St†lberg will continue to serve the international skiing family in the future as part of the FIS Council.
Another major National Ski Association also stands before a change of leadership: Duri Bezzola will retire after eight years at the top of Swiss-Ski at the upcoming general assembly in Saas Fee on 5th July which will be tasked with electing a new president.
|At the award ceremony|
Alain M‚thiaz, a newly-elected FIS Council Member and President of the French Ski Association was awarded with the highest honor given in France, the l'Ordre nationale de la Legion d'honneur, last Friday, 13th June. He received the prestigious chevalier award which is said to be equivalent to the British knighthood, for example. Mr. M‚thiaz received the award from Jean-Claude Killy, a grand officer of the Order, at the medieval castle Chateau de Coudr‚e in Sciez-sur-L‚man (FRA) in the presence of selected representatives of snow and mountain sports such as Antoine D‚n‚riaz and L‚o Lacroix.
Other recipients of an honor from the l'Ordre nationale de la Legion d'honneur announced last Friday included Greek singer and Unicef Ambassador Nana Mouskouri, Jean-Claude Trichet, President of the European Central Bank, and French No.1 tennis player Amelie Mauresmo, among others.
|Bergisel jump by Hadid|
Following the success of the previous works, including the FIS book "Skisport in den bildenden Kunst" that received the Ullr Award from the International Skiing History Association (ISHA), FIS has launched preparations for a new book on the fine arts. The project is led by Karin Rase, an arts historian based in Berlin (GER), and supported by FIS through Christian Knauth and FIS Council Member and President of the Marc Hodler Foundation Fritz Wagnerberger.
The focus of the new book is on Ski Sports in Graphics, Art and Design, and it will be published by publishing house Edition Leipzig.
The book aims to present how select events portray a broad spectrum of the art and culture of the sport of skiing. This will be achieved through examples from graphics, art and architecture. Some of these examples will include print media used by the Olympic Winter Games, various FIS World Championships and other events. Contemporary fine arts, such as those created by the work of artists such as Zaha Hadid, Daniel Buren and Carsten H”ller, will also be showcased.
The book is scheduled to be published in the spring 2009.
The FIS Aid&Promotion Ski Jumping 2008 training camp is scheduled to take place in Villach (AUT) from 7th - 12th July 2008. Per eligible Member Association, up to three athletes and one coach may be registered. The camp will be organized and coordinated by Sepp Gratzer, FIS Continental Cup Coordinator. Entries are due to Madeleine Erb (email@example.com) in the FIS office no later than 25th June.