What are the major topics on your agenda as the women’s Alpine Race Director?
The major topics are of course connected with the preparations for the upcoming Audi FIS Ski World Cup 2021/2022. We are in close contact with all the Organizers and doing on-site inspections. The major concerns are still linked to the Covid-19 protocols. We don’t know yet how the situation will evolve. Maybe the upcoming winter season will still be affected by the pandemic. So we are trying together with the Organizers to find the best possible solutions, as we did last year, in order to deliver the best FIS World Cup events.
The second very important topic, are the Olympic Winter Games in Beijing. We are currently working from a distance in Europe, while being in very close contact with the Chinese Organizers and connected to the IOC.
With three words – how would you describe the last season?
Very special, very demanding and very successful!
Together with all the Organizers, the NSAs, all the TV broadcasters and other stakeholders – we were able to show, even under the very difficult circumstances we faced last year, that it’s possible with great spirit & teamwork to deliver a successful winter season.
With three words – How are you hoping to describe the next Audi FIS Ski World Cup season 2021/22?
Still special, still demanding and hopefully very successful again!
I don’t think that the upcoming FIS World Cup season will be very different than the previous one. On the one hand we gained a lot of experience during the pandemic and we know how to deliver our events. On the other hand, many of the ski resorts will be open for the public. There will be tourists and many fans cheering, whereas most of the resorts were completely closed for them last year and only accessible for the FIS World Cup. From this point of view, it will be more challenging, because more people will mix and come together with us. So we need to pay even more attention. In any case, we are going to use our gained experience and knowledge that the Audi FIS Ski World Cup 2021/2022 will be as successful as last year.
Why will the Winter Olympic Games in Beijing 2022 be special?
We’ve all seen the Olympic Games in Tokyo, which were special without the public in a completely different environment but the games could still be delivered. I’m convinced that we are looking towards great Olympic Winter Games in Beijing next February. What will be special for us this time, is that we didn’t have any test events beforehand due to the pandemic. It will be the first time for everybody in competition mode on the field of plays in Beijing, which will bring for sure some more challenges. Nevertheless, the Olympic Games will be the major event and I’m very confident that all the stakeholders will work together, giving more than 100%.
Any final word Peter?
Let’s be optimistic! All the stakeholders are working very hard, are all dedicated and committed to deliver the best possible experience for our athletes and our Snowsports fans, even though it’s a massive task to deliver for us. Of course it will not be easy but we will deliver it with dedication. My job as a FIS Alpine Race Director is getting more and more complicated and changed a lot with the current conditions during a global pandemic but I’m trying to tackle it as an opportunity. An opportunity, to demonstrate that we are still able to do this. I’m dedicated to deliver great events together with all the stakeholders for the best outcome of our sport.
Stay tuned! In the lead up to the 2021-2022 season, FIS will sit down with some members of the FIS operational staff from all disciplines to get their views on the upcoming season. First up today was women’s Alpine Chief Race Director Peter Gerdol.