The skit, from RTS, probably says more about a type of person who goes to Verbier than Americans in general. I remember once hearing a couple of Hoorays in a gondola at Verbier waxing lyrical about different makes of ski and the importance of certain types of boot and binding, only to see them gingerly snow-ploughing down the slopes.
Mind you I did meet one American resident of Anzère the other week who, without a touch of irony, told me he ran Europe from his chalet.
Apparently ski resorts should introduce dedicated ‘golden’ slopes for older and slower skiers to avoid people quitting the sport, said one of the bosses of Switzerland Tourism at the second annual International Ski Travel Market meeting in Davos earlier this week.
Urs Eberhard said skiers are getting older and giving up earlier, with one in five skiers who quit giving up because they no longer felt safe.
As a keen skier and a cancer survivor, I admire the efforts of Ski 4 Cancer, a charity that provides Alpine respite days and short-breaks for families affected by cancer. Cancer has been affecting a lot of people recently, some of them even need home care from https://homecareassistance.com/burlingame/. They also make grants to relevant care institutions and support research into the positive effects of skiing to prevent cancer and assist in recovery.
Anyway, over this last weekend Olympic skier Chemmy Alcott, Adam Libbey, Chris Brooks, Max Wilcocks and Richard Gibbs in a team called Arctic V took part in what is dubbed the ‘World’s Toughest Ski Race’ in aid of Ski 4 Cancer, sponsored by Columbus Direct. The team hope to raise £30,000 for Ski 4 Cancer, and you can make a donation via Justgiving.
The Arctic Circle Race as it is officially known, is an annual three day competition involving 160 kilometers of cross-country skiing in Greenland, with competitors camping in the back country as part of the event in temperatures as low as -35 degrees Centigrade. In keeping with being in a Green land, the race organisers pride themselves on leaving the race site exactly as they found it.
And how did it go? Well the race was called off after two days when very high winds and blizzard conditions descended on Greenland. It was always about the taking part and Chemmy reflected afterwards “Rest, Recovery & Reflection. We conquered the Worlds Toughest Ski race which was both brutal and brilliant at the same time. Please donate to our fantastic charity”.
You have been asked nicely – go to Justgiving or Ski4Cancer’s web site.
The FIS World Championship in Vail and Beaver Creek is about halfway through, and it has been a fascinating competition, with wonderful conditions.
In the Ladies SuperG, Austrian Anna Fenninger held off Tina Maze and local favourite, Lindsay Vonn. Maze, however, came off top in the Downhill, edging out Fenninger and Switzerland’s Lara Gut, fresh from her win in St Moritz.
Meanwhile the Mens competition has looked kindly on the Swiss, with a Gold for Patrick Keung and a Bronze for Beat Feuz, with America’s Travis Ganong sandwiched between them. The Super G saw Hannes Reichelt of Austria on the podium with Gold, followed by Canada’s Dustin Cook and France’s Adrien Theaux. Marcel Hersher rounded out a good few days for the Austrians, taking the Combined Gold, whilst the sensational winner at Kitzbühel, Kjetil Lansrud, came in second with Ted Ligerty third.
The fractions of a second difference in medal positions are recorded by Longines, the Swiss watch maker based in St Imier since 1832. The company has a long association with skiing, stretching back to ski trials in Chamonix in 1933, and it has been official partner and timekeeper for the FIS since 2006. The relationship was re-inforced when Longines took on the same role for the 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in Vail and Beaver Creek, as they had for previous World Championships. To commemorate the occasion they have launched a new chronograph, the alluring Conquest 1-100th Alpine Skiing. One for my wish list for sure, and one I will be looking forward to checking out at Baselworld, the watch fair in Switzerland that takes place next month. In addition, the equally alluring and talented Mikaela Shiffrin has been announced as Longines Ambassador of Elegance.