News from the World of Skiing 

  Korpi (FIN) and Liu (CHN) victorious in Saas Fee half-pipe ... more

  Looking good at Levi (FIN) ... more

  European Cup opening indoors again ... more

  Innsbruck and Kuopio finalists for host of first Winter Youth Olympic Games in 2012 ... more


 Inside FIS 

  Record participation expected in 2009 FIS World Championships ... more

  Val d'IsŠre 2009 receives keys to new sports center ... more

  Candidates for 2015 FIS World Championships ... more

  Cross-Country TDs hit the books ... more

  International Perspectives on Skiing: Part III ... more

  FIS Academy continues successful coaching of sport managers ... more


 Member News 

  Croatian Ski Association shortlisted for coveted Sportbusiness Award ... more

  Elections in Lebanon ... more


 News from the World of Skiing 

Korpi (FIN) and Liu (CHN) victorious in Saas Fee half-pipe
The ladies podium
Photo: Oliver Kraus/FIS

Finland's Janne Korpi and Jiayu Liu from China won the second half-pipe contest of the LG Snowboard FIS World Cup 2008/2009. They coped best with the challenging weather conditions and dominated the field in both runs. Both the qualification and finals had to be held on Friday due to the heavy snowfall in the Saas valley (SUI) on Thursday. Janne Korpi delivered faultless runs with the combination of BS 1080 and Cap 1080 in Saas-Fee's Allalin Freestyle Park. He left Kohdai Watanabe (JPN) and teammate IIkka-Eemeli Laari (FIN) behind. Jiayu Liu convinced among the ladies ahead of Shiho Nakashima from Japan and Sophie Rodriguez from France. For 17-year-old Liu it was her third World Cup win after the maiden triumph in this season's championship half-pipe in Sungwoo (KOR) in February 2008.

After Janne Korpi just missed the first place in Saas-Fee last year he left the others little choice this time around: "It was pretty tough early this morning. The view was not that good and it was pretty windy. But after the first hits I got my confidence back and then it was great. And I had good wax on my board, which helped me to speed up in the pipe to do my tricks."

The LG Snowboard FIS World Cup will continue with the season's second big air in Stockholm˙(SWE)˙on 22nd November 2008. For more information on the Stockholm event visit www.winterjam.se and for the latest on the LG Snowboard FIS World Cup check out www.fissnowboardworldcup.com. ˙

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Looking good at Levi (FIN)
Levi (FIN)

A cold weather spell in Finnish Lapland has given a boost to the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup organizers at Levi (FIN). Enough snow had already been produced for the Levi Black racing slope by Tuesday and the organizer has since concentrated on producing snow for the training slope which will be opened for the general skiing public on Friday, 7th November. Even a few days of milder weather should no longer threaten the season's slalom opening races scheduled for 15th-16th November. The work with the injection pipe to ice the piste has also started. Hans Pieren, FIS Race Director for the men's technical events, will conduct the official snow control tomorrow Thursday, 6th November.

The organizers at Levi are expecting a record crowd. This is also thanks to a local sponsor which donated tickets for the two-day event to 14'000 school children and students in the area.

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European Cup opening indoors again
Amn‚ville ski hall

The opening of the FIS European Cup again takes place indoors this year. For the first time, however, one of the world's largest indoor ski halls in Amn‚ville-les-Thermes (FRA) played host to both the ladies' and men's first slaloms. France's indoor facility also hosted the 2nd French national indoor slalom championships last weekend.

The men's European Cup season kicked off in Amn‚ville on Tuesday with the ladies taking on the slopes today Wednesday. The season's first wins went to Kjetil Jansrud of Norway and Katharina Drr of Germany. The men's second indoor slalom will be staged in SnowWorld in Landgraaf (NED) tomorrow, Thursday, 6th November while the ladies' season will continue on 7th November in the ski hall of Neuss (GER).

As last year, the indoor slalom events are conducted as three-run slaloms: the first two runs are raced according to the normal slalom rules (and the results also count for FIS points) while the 30 best after the two runs qualify for the third and final run. European Cup points are awarded for the top 30 of the combined competition results from the two indoor races, ladies and men respectively, with the winner receiving 100 points, 2nd place 80 points, 3rd place 60 and so on.

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Innsbruck and Kuopio finalists for host of first Winter Youth Olympic Games in 2012

The International Olympic Committee has revealed the names of the finalist Candidate Cities from which the host city for the 1st Winter Youth Olympic Games in 2012 will be elected. Innsbruck and Kuopio were selected by the IOC Executive Board, and will now be submitted to a postal vote by the IOC members. The host city will be announced by IOC President Jacques Rogge in a live web cast on www.olympic.org, provisionally scheduled for 12 December 2008.

The EB's decision on the two finalists was based on an IOC Evaluation Commission report, which is now available on www.olympic.org. Chaired by Pernilla Wiberg, the Commission assessed the projects of the four shortlisted Candidate Cities - Harbin (CHI), Innsbruck (AUT), Kuopio (FIN) and Lillehammer (NOR). The report focused on the risks associated with the organisation of the Games within the timeframe of only three years to plan and prepare to host the first edition of this new event.

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 Inside FIS 

Record participation expected in 2009 FIS World Championships

Based on current status, FIS is looking forward to record participation in the 2009 FIS World Championships. As of close of business today, Wednesday 5th November, 67 nations have entered to participate in the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in Val d'Isere (FRA) while 55 nations have signed up for the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships in Liberec (CZE). Both of these represent a new record number of nations; the previous records were 62 nations in Are (SWE) and 49 nations in Sapporo (JPN), for Alpine and Nordic events respectively. 35 nations have also confirmed their participation in the FIS Snowboard World Championships in Sungwoo, Gangwon Province (KOR), with a dozen more entries expected in the next few days. Entries for the FIS Freestyle World Championships in Inawashiro (JPN) that take place in March 2009 are due in December.

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Val d'IsŠre 2009 receives keys to new sports center
Presentation of keys
Photo: OC Val d'Isere

Last Friday, Mayor of Val d'IsŠre Marc Bauer, accompanied by Herv‚ Gaymard, officially received the keys to the new sports center, which is to be used as the World Ski Championships Press Center in February 2009. "Mission accomplished" declared the representatives of GFC which built the center in just six months. The keys were handed to the Mayor with one day to spare before the official delivery date. As President of the Organizing Committee he then handed the keys to Jean Luc Fabre, the Director General of the organizing committee. It's now up to the Val d'IsŠre 2009 team to add the fixtures and fittings required to transform the 3800mũ center into an area fit for the media to work. 1500 reporters from 80 countries will be taking control of these vast premises which will become a genuine hive of activity in just 89 days.

Up to date information is continuously published on www.valdisere2009.org and one of the most popular items on the website has been requests for the special invitation to attend the event at no cost and a 1 euro transport voucher. The organizing committee expects to reach 100'000 invitation requests by the end of this week!

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Candidates for 2015 FIS World Championships

In the coming months, National Ski Associations and Organizing Committees will be carefully deliberating whether to apply as a Candidate for the 2015 FIS World Championships. With this in mind, the updated Conditions and Procedures are published on the website (here). The main difference to highlight is the preparation of the Candidates project concept, as approved by the FIS Council in November 2007:

After submission of the candidacy by 1st May 2009 and application together with the registration fee and guarantee for training days according to article 5 of the Rules for the Organization of the FIS World Championships, FIS will provide each candidate and its National Ski Association with instructions and a detailed questionnaire for completion by 1st September 2009.

The Candidates responses to the questionnaire are then to be submitted in a simple text format, which will serve as a working document outlining different areas of the candidacy project, on which the discussions with the members of the FIS Inspection Group will be based. Members of the group will each meet with the Candidate at a mutually convenient opportunity to review the specific area of the project which falls under their responsibility. This should take place in conjunction with another event or a World Cup inspection where possible, in order to save multiple trips and reduce costs.

During the FIS Technical Committee Meetings in the autumn a working meeting with each Candidate and the FIS Inspection Group members will take place to review the project concept. After the inspections and the joint review meeting, the Candidate will finalize the documentation relating to its project concept for the 2015 Championships and thereafter the Inspection Group will establish its report to submit in spring 2009 to the National Ski Associations and the FIS Council.

Additionally, the FIS Council expressed that a joint Freestyle - Snowboard candidacy will be encouraged.

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Cross-Country TDs hit the books
TD seminar in Sochi
Photo: Uros Ponikvar
TD seminar in Tokyo
Photo: Thomas Jons

In the last two weeks, the Cross-Country Technical Delegates (TD) held several seminars on two continents. In La Clusaz (FRA), the Central European TDs conducted their update from 17th-19th October while a week later the Russian-speaking countries carried out their TD seminar in Sochi (RUS) and the Japanese and Chinese TDs staged an education seminar in Tokyo (JPN).

In La Clusaz, 50 participants from 10 countries attended the seminar led by Karl-Heinz Lickert, Chairman of the Sub-Committee for Rules and Control. Despite the large number of participants, a fruitful workshop with lots of discussion, team exercises and information exchange took place. The agenda considered items such as grooming, team captains meeting preparation, rules update and sanctions as well as an exam for the new Cross-Country TDs.

One week later, over 80 attendees from Russia, Ukraine and Belarus gathered in Sochi for the FIS TD Seminar which was organized by FIS and the Russian Ski Association. The seminar focused both on TD education and building the Sochi 2014 team. In effect, it can be viewed as the launch of an education program building up to the 2014 Olympic Winter Games. Together with Vladimir Loginov, President of the Russian Ski Association and Denis Polykov, Sports Director for Sochi 2014, the participants had the pleasure of visiting the Olympic Cross-Country venue at Krasnaya Polyana.

In Tokyo, a total of 31 participants from Japan and China attended the session led by Tomas Jons from Sweden. Focus of the seminar was on TD administration matters and sanctions whilst the practical part was held outside where the participants set up a team sprint stadium on a soccer field. The group demonstrated great enthusiasm in Cross-Country Skiing and we can now look forward to an exciting season 2008-2009, with the FISU Universiade in Harbin/Yabuli (CHN) as the main event in Asia.

Beside the three mentioned sessions, other successful FIS Cross-Country TD Seminars were held in the last months in Falls Creek (AUS) and Lahti (FIN).

Includes contributions by Sandra Spitz, Karl-Heinz Lickert, Uros Ponikvar and Tomas Jons

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International Perspectives on Skiing: Part III
South African winelands
Photo: SA Tourism

In the third part of the series entitled "International Perspectives on Skiing," another three video interviews conducted on the occasion of the 46th International Ski Congress in Cape Town (RSA) are now available. These feature Chris Robinson (CAN), Chairman of the FIS Freestyle Committee, Mark Simmers (GBR), CEO of Snowsport GB and Tom Kelly (USA), Chairman of the FIS PR and Mass Media Committee, all of whom shared their thoughts on various aspects of our sport. Click here to view the videos.

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FIS Academy continues successful coaching of sport managers

The FIS Academy again organized a 5-day international event and administration program at the World Academy of Sport in Manchester (GBR) from 3rd-7th November.

The 5-day program aims to equip executives in sport management with the necessary insight and tools in areas such as strategic innovation, project finances, leadership, sponsorship and brand connection, stakeholder mapping, broadcast and new media, volunteer engagement and agreement and legal issues in sport.

Sarah Lewis, FIS Secretary General, joined the high caliber group of lecturers in this week's seminar. She commented: "The quality of the˙5-day˙program and its delivery provides the participants with a true insight into the workings of international sport. It was again a pleasure to join the team at the FIS Academy˙and spend valuable time with the students."

For more details and a schedule of courses offered by FIS Academy please visit the Academy's website here and the schedule here.

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 Member News 

Croatian Ski Association shortlisted for coveted Sportbusiness Award
World Cup in Zagreb
Photo: Agence Zoom

The Croatian Ski Association has been shortlisted for the Sportbusiness Sport Event Management Awards 2008. Competing in the category Overlay/Facilities, the Croatian Ski Association is among the final six competitors for its work on the Audi FIS World Cup "Vip Snow Queen Trophy" Zagreb Sljeme 2008. The short list was selected from among 150 entries and released on 1st October. Three awards - Bronze, Silver and Gold -will be given in each category; besides Overlay/Facilities the categories include Ceremonies, Event Look and Event Marketing, just to mention a few.

In the final of six, the Croatian Ski Association is up against Losberger GmbH that was responsible for the Beijing 2008 Olympic and Paralympic Games; GL Events that prepared the Hong Kong venues for the 2008 Olympic Summer Games; HOK Sport Venue Event staging The Breeders Cup; AsiaPromote Ventures which prepared KL Grand Prix Show Jumping; as well as FIS Partner Nussli AG that has been nominated for its for theF1 Grand Prix of Europe.

Two special awards will also be given, the so called Sportbusiness City Award where nominees include Berlin, Doha, Manchester, Melbourne, Moscow and New York, and the Award for Outstanding Contribution which features a high class list of nominees with Franz Beckenbauer, Joseph S. Blatter, Bernie Ecclestone, Gilbert Felli, Jean Claude Killy, and Ken Schofield.

The winners decided by a 15-member team of judges, including for example IOC Member, Sir Craig Reedie, Dr Irvin Khoza, Chairman of the 2010 FIFA World Cup organizing committee and Horst Lichtner General Secretary of the I International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF), will be presented on 12th November 2008 in London (GBR).

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Elections in Lebanon
Toni Khoury

The General Assembly of the Lebanese Ski Association met on 24th October. It elected IOC member Toni Khoury as new President, as well as elected Edmond Keyrouz to the position of Secretary General. The election was conducted in presence of 27 of the 28 Lebanese ski clubs. The clubs also nominated the former President of the Lebanese Ski Association, Mr. Camille Rizk, Honorary President for life with the right to attend all meetings.

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