Marc Gisin crashed on 15th December 2018 during the World Cup downhill on the Saslong and was seriously injured. About five months later, the Swiss skier returned to Val Gardena/Gröden last weekend to personally thank the organizer and the medevac rescue team Aiut Alpin for the formidable rescue and first aid.
Marc Gisin will probably never forget the 101st World Cup race of his career. But not because he celebrated his first podium in the highest ranking race series on the legendary Saslong. In the South Tyrolean downhill classic, the 30-year-old Swiss had a difficult fall on the camel humps and suffered numerous injuries on impact including fractured ribs, a depressed acetabulum and some minor fractures of the spine. Gisin even had to be intubated before being transported to the hospital in Bolzano/Bozen followed by a transfer of the Swiss speed specialist to Lucerne.
Five months later, Gisin has recovered. "In the meantime, I'm in top shape again and I owe a large part of that to the organizing committee and the Aiut Alpin team, who did an excellent job. First and foremost Doctor Rauch, who was in charge of my rescue operation. Therefore, it was important for me to come to Val Gardena/Gröden and to show my gratitude. To say thank you, because it is not at all self-evident. You actually saved my life and I owe it to you that I am so well today," said Gisin during a visit to the headquarters of the Aiut Alpin in Pontives on the weekend.
Since the accident on the Saslong, Marc Gisin is even more aware that he is in good hands in the event of an accident. This gives him a feeling of security. "During training or the race, you try not to think about these things. But when something actually happens, you are very grateful when everything works smoothly and the right people are there during the rescue," says Gisin.
Return to the Saslong on 20 and 21 December
Marc Gisin has been working feverishly for weeks on his comeback and a return to Val Gardena/Gröden to the 52nd Saslong Classic race. "My goal is to race in Lake Louise and later again here in the valley. During the last weeks, I have done everything I can to get back on my feet as quickly as possible. The rehab went very fast and well. Physically there are still a few smaller things that I have to work on. But I think that I will be in top shape by August when I can ski again", says the brother of the Olympic champions Dominique (2014 Sochi downhill) and Michelle Gisin (2018 Pyeongchang alpine combination).
Rainer Senoner, President of the Saslong Classic Club, also hopes that Marc Gisin will return to the South Tyrolean classic in December. "On behalf of the Saslong Classic Club, I would like to thank Aiut Alpin for their great work. Of course, we are very happy that Marc is well again. He is always very welcome and of course we wish him all the best that he will be here in December 2019," Senoner concluded.
Release courtesy of Val Gardena Ski World Cup Press Office