Quick Hits: Niskanen Athlete of the Year in Finland

Cross-Country ace Iivo Niskanen was awarded the Athlete of the Year Award in Finland at the annual sports gala held on 18th January 2018 in Helsinki (FIN).

The 26-year old received the reward in recognition of his outstanding performance at the 2017 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships on home soil in Lahti when he became World Champion in the 15km classic and won bronze in the team sprint together with Sami Jauhojärvi.

Niskanen received the award for the second time after 2015, when he shared the prize with Jauhojärvi following their Olympic gold in team sprint in Sochi 2014.

Resorts in the Alps head towards record snowfall stats

According to the recent report by Patrick Thorne, the SnowHunter, January snowfall totals are getting so big that resorts in the Alps are getting close to record snow depths and snowfall totals.

Resorts reported up to 3.3m of snow in the seven days to Sunday and the number of resorts passing the 4m snow depth total on upper slopes has continued to grow with Andermatt (SUI), Flaine (FRA), Laax (SUI), La Rosiere (FRA), Les Arcs (FRA), Murren (SUI), Saas Fee (SUI), St Anton (AUT) and Verbier (SUI) all now having more than 4 metres of snow on their upper runs.

Courchevel (FRA) says it has had 5.49m of snowfall this season so far, the most since the 1979-80 season.

Engelberg (SUI) now reports a 6.25m base and Crans Montana (SUI) a 6.5m base on their upper slopes, the deepest in the Alps for some years.

Not just the Alps but also Western Canada received a lot of snow. Mount Washington Alpine Resort on Vancouver Island off Canada’s West Coast was forced to close on Sunday, 21st January 2018 as there was too much snow. The resort received more than a metre of snow in 24 hours, forcing the centre and access roads to close due to dangerous conditions.

Other Western Canadian ski resorts reported heavy snowfall too.  Whistler Blackcomb has had 1.5m of snow in the last 72 hours.

Young Mongolian cross-country skiers train in Switzerland with an eye on YOG 2020

Fifteen youngsters aged 12 to 15 left Mongolia and their yurts for two weeks’ training on the slopes of the Vallée de Joux, the cross-country competition venue for the upcoming Lausanne 2020 Winter Youth Olympic Games. They will do the same in 2019, in the hope of being picked for the up to eight-strong Mongolian cross-country skiing team for the YOG in 2020.

Besides the purely sporting side, the aim of this first trip is also to meet young locals their own age on the slopes by taking part in sports, drawing or English lessons.

Go PyeongChang app launched

The Go PyeongChang app is now live and ready to help users navigate their way around the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. The exclusive Olympic transport app provides customised information for international visitors and media who may not be used to navigating the public transport systems in Korea.

The app is available in four languages – Korean, English, Chinese, and Japanese – and payments can be made directly on the app. 

Available on iOS and Android, the app is expected to minimise the use of personal cars during the Games to ease traffic, provide a connected transport system and help create a green Games.

Latest Behind the Scenes videos

WADA launches new anti-doping eLearning platform

The World Anti-Doping Agency announced the release of a new eLearning platform, ADeL (Anti-Doping eLearning), which will serve as a central hub for all of WADA’s eLearning courses and resources.
ADeL is being released with the following five courses focused on key target groups:

  1. The Athlete Learning Program about Health and Anti-Doping
  2. Coach True
  3. Sport Physicians Tool Kit
  4. ADO Kickstart (for administrators and new ADO employees)
  5. Parents’ Guide

Users will be able to demonstrate competence with each course by acquiring a certificate following a test.
Meanwhile, an enhanced language translation package has been developed as part of ADeL to allow stakeholders to view content in their own language. Initially, the resource will be available in five languages with seven more coming in due course.