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DECEMBER NEWS IN BRIEF
Saturday December 1, 2018 - Email this article to a friend

Shiffrin rules supreme, Vail Resorts eyes up more resorts in Australia + Swiss Rail Transfer Ticket ends. NEW & UPDATED

 

 

 

 

NEWS IN BRIEF STORIES FROM NOVEMBER

SUNDAY 30TH DECEMBER

SHIFFRIN RULES SUPREME

The US skier, Mikaela Shiffrin, has become the women's all-time World Cup leader in slalom wins.

On Saturday she beat the record set by her childhood heroine, Marlies Schild from Austria.

It was Shiffrin's 36th career victory in Semmering, Austria.

Schild, won 35 times before retiring in 2014.

Shiffrin is only 23-years old and is set to be the greatest female skier of all time if she remains injury free and continues her development.

"When I was young I wanted to be the best skier in the world. I was always watching Marlies, she was a legend. To me, she is the best slalom skier. I wouldn't be here without her. For me, she has this record for ever," said Shiffrin after her latest victory.

See here for a longer PlanetSKI article on the remakable rise of Mikaella Shiffrin since we first met her back in 2012.

FRIDAY 28TH DECEMBER

VAIL RESORTS LOOKS SET TO BUY 2 MORE OZ RESORTS

It already owns Perisher in Australia and is now reported to be adding Hotham and Falls Creek at a cost of $85m (US).

Vail Resorts would neither confirm or deny the claim made in the Australian media saying that it does not comment on speculation.

Vail Resorts owns numerous resorts in the USA and Canada and is expanding its operations across the rest of the world.

Here at PlanetSKI we understand it is keen to expand its operations in Japan and is looking to tap into the Chinese market.

The purchase of more resorts in Australia would help this strategy.

Here at PlanetSKI we skied in Perisher last summer on our tour of the ski fields of Australia and New Zealand.

Expanding in AustraliaExpanding in Australia

 

 

 

 

 

 

THURSDAY 27TH DECEMBER

END OF THE LINE

The Swiss Transfer Ticket on Swiss Rail ends on 1st of January 2019.

It is a much-favoured way of getting from an airport to a ski resort and back, but has been discontinued.

"For short stays, skiing holidays or vacations in one specific location, the Swiss Transfer Ticket is the best and least expensive option. It takes foreign guests from the airport or border railway station directly to the vacation destination and back again," said Swiss Rail.

Not anymore.

However you can purchase a ticket until 31st December 2018 and use it for future travel up to 30th of June 2019 (last return date).

A second-class ticket is £123 and first class comes in at a hefty £197.

It is not always the cheapest way to transfer if your resort is near to an airport so it is always worth comparing to the cost of an ordinary ticket.

Switzerland by railSwitzerland by rail

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


FRIDAY 21ST DECEMBER

DRINKS CAR FOR WINTER PARK SKI TRAIN

The Denver to Winter Park ski train in Colorado, USA, starts in January with an extra carriage.

One that offers snacks & refreshments, including beer and wine.

The new railcar will be a two-level Amtrak "Superliner Sightseer" with windows that start at floor level and wrap into the ceiling.

It will seat 73 people.

The top level will have both tables and swivel chairs while the lower level will have tables next to the snack bar.

Coming soon...Coming soon...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Service is expanding this season, too, with the addition of three Friday round trips

It gives vistas of spectacular scenery as the train climbs through Jefferson County, the rocky foothills near Eldorado Canyon and the historic Moffat Tunnel under the Continental Divide.

The train stops right at the Winter Park base, which sits at the west portal of the 6.2-mile tunnel that opened in 1928.

Here at PlanetSKI we took it last winter:

PlanetSKI arrives in Winter ParkPlanetSKI arrives in Winter Park

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


And here is our report from Winter Park:

WEDNESDAY 19TH DECEMBER

NAKED WOMAN POSTER WITHDRAWN AFTER PROTESTS

The organisers of the World Cup alpine races at Semmering at the end of next week have withdrawn a controversial poster following accusations of sexism.

The Austrian resort will stage women's slalom and giant slalom races on 28th and 29th December.

The promotional poster is a painting showing a naked female skier jumping over some animal heads.

A crescent moon with eyes looks up between the woman's legs.

Naked woman posterThe offending poster


























The image came in for a storm of criticism on social media.

It was seen as particularly insensitive following numerous complaints going back decades of sexual assault on Austrian skiers by some coaches. 


LINDSEY VONN GETS XMAS WISH

The American ski racer, who's currently out injured, has got her Christmas wish.

She reports that she's been given the go ahead to return to racing in January.

Lindsey VonnLindsey Vonn at her final Olympics in February




























The 34-year-old has been out of action since injuring her knee while training for the Super G in Lake Louise, Canada, in November.

It persuaded her to postpone her retirement at the end of this season because she wants to compete at Lake Louise one more time.

Vonn is hoping to break the great Swede Ingemar Stenmark's record of 86 World Cup wins.

She currently has 82.

TUESDAY 18TH DECEMBER

SKI AMIS SOLD

The UK tour operator, run by Ed and Christine van Zadelhoff, and has been sold for an undisclosed sum.

"We are taking retirement after nearly 30 years of working with Ski Amis," said Christine.

"The business has been purchased by Andrew Dufty and he has taken over the reins as of now, although we will be around to help and support him for a few months."

"The management team remains exactly the same. Andrew is also planning to keep the company running in exactly the same way - so in short, business as usual!"

Andrew Dufty is an experienced marketing professional and has worked extensively in the travel industry.

"Ski Amis is a terrific business and I look forward to building on the success of what Ed and Christine have built together over the years," said Andrew to PlanetSKI.

"We will finally be realising our lifelong dream of sailing around the world so exciting times for us starting next summer," added Christine.

"I'm sure Andrew will do great things with Ski Amis into the future so exciting times for him as well."

See here for more about Ski Amis.

The couple leave on a high as they were recently awarded in the British Travel Awards, 2018.

Ski Amis winsEd and Christine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ski Amis winsSki Amis wins

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ski Amis winsSki Amis wins

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here at PlanetSKI we have been great friends with Ski Amis over the years and we wish Ed and Christine all the very, very best.

We'll miss ya!

SUNDAY 16TH DECEMBER

SWISS SKIER INJURED IN VAL GARDENA MEN'S DOWNHILL

Swiss Olympic downhill skier Marc Gisin was rushed to hospital from the slopes after suffering a serious crash during Saturday's World Cup downhill event in Val Gardena, Italy.

He lost control just before the Camel Hump section.

Organisers said he was unconscious before he was airlifted off the slopes.

Later he was flown to Lucerne in Switzerland where he remains in intensive care.

Racing was suspended for 30 minutes after the accident.

We wish Marc Gisin a speedy recovery.

 

SALT LAKE CITY SELECTED

Salt Lake City has been selected as the United States' candidate for a bid for the 2030 Winter Olympics.

It was a choice between Denver and Salt Lake City for the US Olympic Committee.

However the USOC board stated that despite their selection of Salt Lake City, they had not determined whether  formal bid will be made.

"I'd like to thank Denver and Salt Lake City, and their respective leadership teams, for participating in this process and their commitment to make the Olympic and Paralympic Movements stronger," Probst said.

"We're incredibly lucky to have multiple able and willing cities to choose from, but in the end, we believe Salt Lake City will give us the best chance to return the Winter Games to the US."

Salt Lake City hosted the Games in 2002 and they were both popular and seen as a success.

We reported back on the legacy of the Games a decade on in 2012.

And there was an event to launch a potential re-bid, though things didn't quite go to plan with a certain flame:

Salt Lake City had considered going for 2022 and then 2026 but decided to keep its powder dry and have a go for 2030 instead.

WEDNESDAY 12TH DECEMBER

GERMAN WORLD CUP SKIER COULD LOSE 1ST RACE WIN

The alpine skier, Stefan Luitz, was reportedly spotted using supplementary oxygen during the World Cup in Beaver Creek, USA, earlier this month.

The International Ski Federation is now conducting an investigation.

The German won the giant slalom event on December 2nd but the result has now been thrown into doubt after the 26-year-old was reportedly photographed using an oxygen tank between runs.

Such a practice is not banned under World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) rules, but has been prohibited by the FIS since June 2016.

It is understood the team has admitted the incident but claims it didn't know it was against the rules.

If Luitz is disqualified then Marcel Hirscher who came second would be awarded his 60th World Cup race win.

Luiz at Beaver CreekLuitz at Beaver Creek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TUESDAY 11TH DECEMBER

WOMEN TO BE ALLOWED ON CRESTA RUN

The Cresta Run toboganning track in St Moritz, Switzerland, banned women almost 90 years ago.

In 1929 women were banned from racing on the track after one was injured.

Cresta Run riders go down the track on an individual toboggan, lying head-first on a special sleigh.

They race at incredible speeds of between 60mph and 80mph.

It is 1,325 yard-long natural ice toboggan track.

It is the world's oldest toboggan track and has been the home of the St Moritz Tobogganing Club (SMTC), founded by British Military officers, since 1887.

At a SMTC meeting members voted by a two-third majority to allow women to ride the Cresta Run.

The first Cresta Run was built in the winter of 1884/85 by five guests who formed the outdoor amusements committee for the Kulm Hotel.

Since then it has probably become the most thrilling ice run in the world.

Here's a vintage video of the Cresta Run from 1938 from British Pathé.

A quote from the video, there's "only an inch between a perfect run and a crash", sums up the thrill of the Cresta Run.

 

MONDAY 10TH DECEMBER

AVALANCHE IN AOSTA KILLS ONE

A French couple skiing above the town of Chamois in the northwest of the Aosta Valley, Italy was caught in an avalanche on Saturday.

Italian news reports say that the girlfriend in the couple survived the avalanche.

The Italian news agency ANSA reported that the pair was skiing at 2,500m when a mass of snow broke off a crest.

The man was reportedly caught in the avalanche dragging him 70m down the slope.

He was found buried under 2m of snow.

Avalanche in the AlpsAvalanche in the Alps

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CANCELLED SLALOM RACES DUE TO WEATHER

The men's slalom races in Val d'Isere have been cancelled.

Snow and strong gusts of wind lead to the decision earlier on Sunday morning.

Read here for the ski and snowboard events scheduled for this weekend, Saturday 8th - Sunday 9th December:

FIS TwitterFIS Twitter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"Oooh Val d Isere... thanks to the crew for the very hard work you put down this weekend but mother nature was stronger today.

"Slalom cancelled.

"See you next year," wrote FIS on its Facebook page.

FIS Alpine World Cup TourFIS Alpine World Cup Tour

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

See here for yesterday's action in Val d'Isere during the Giant Slalom where Austria's Marcel Hirscher took Gold.

"He is flying over ruts, recovering from every uncomfortable situation, and pushing hard no matter what," FIS wrote.

The Critérium de la 1ère Neige - AUDI FIS Ski World Cup Val d'Isère:

SATURDAY 8TH DECEMBER

CRYSTAL GETS GOING ON NEXT WINTER

As we only just enter into the 2018/19 season, Crystal Ski releases its news for next winter...

New flight routes, a new Crystal Childcare club and fantastic deals to be had.

strong>New flight routes include London Gatwick and Bristol to Memmingham in Germany, making it easier to get to the Austrian resorts of Mayrhofen and St Anton.

Skiers from Bristol and the South West can make the most of a new Toulouse flight route to hit the slopes in Andorra.

The country is known for great value ski holidays, so Crystal Ski Holidays grows its game over there.

The new childcare club is part of the winter 19/20 programme in La Thuile, Italy.

It's come about through the popularity of the 'Pepi Penguin Nursery' and 'Beanie Bear' clubs.


SAVINGS FOR NEXT WINTER:
  • Save £75 on childcare
  • Half price lift pass and equipment hire bundle in Andorra
Crystal Ski looks aheadCrystal Ski looks ahead <

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SERRE CHEVALIER TURNS GREEN

The French resort now uses 100% renewable and self-consuming energy sources.

It makes extensive use of hydro-electricity, solar power and wind power.

These three forms now produce 30% of the ski resort's energy.

4.5 gigawatt hours out of a total of 14.5 for all 58 lifts, and its snow-making equipment that includes 14 machine rooms and 577 snow guns.

"Serre-Chevalier is a resort that is fully committed to the energy transition," said the General Manager of Ski area, Patrick Arnaud.

"Our will is to make the resort a solid resource to produce energy to see this project duplicated in several other ski areas."

"Serre Chevalier fully endorses and assumes its leading position in the Southern Alps by initiating pioneering, innovative and beneficial projects throughout the region. "

Serre ChevalierSerre Chevalier

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FRIDAY 7TH DECEMBER

VAL GARDENA TO HOST RESCHEDULED WOMEN'S WORLD CUP RACES

The cancelled ladies Audi FIS Ski World Cup races scheduled to take place in Val d'Isère, France on 14th-16th December have been rescheduled.

Now the races will take place in Val Gardena/Gröden in the Italian Dolomites on 18th-19th December 2018.

The programme:
  • Official arrival, Sunday, 16th December
  • Downhill training, Monday and Tuesday morning, 17th/18th December
  • Downhill, Tuesday, 18th December
  • Super-G, Wednesday, 19th December
We reported on the cancelled racing previously: Snow Is On Its Way Folks

The decision to cancel the ladies races for a lack of snow on the lower mountain, does not affect the men's technical disciplines.

The men's giant slalom is on Saturday 8th and the men's slalom on Sunday 9th in Val d'Isere, as scheduled.

These disciplines are run over a shorter course and will take place on La Face piste.

We'll be keeping a close watch and in the meantime, here's our pre-race piece:

FIS Ski World Cup in Val Gardena: Super-G and downhill men - DolomitesFIS Ski World Cup in Val Gardena

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HALFPIPE SEASON IS ON

The U.S Grand Prix ski and snowboard halfpipe finals take place at Copper Mountain, CO today and tomorrow.

The freeski finals will be today, and tomorrow on Saturday 8th, the snowboard finals.

It has become the northern hemisphere's season opener for nearly seven seasons.

Snowboarder Chloe Kim form the USA leads the way on the ladies' side of board things, while Australia's Scotty James is "standing as perhaps the most formidable of the men's field," FIS puts it...

The Toyota U.S. Grand Prix Copper Mountain The Toyota U.S. Grand Prix Copper Mountain

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Missing from this event is the USA's Shaun White.

U.S and Japanese athletes dominate the board.

MEN'S SNOWBOARD FINALISTS 1-10
  • Raibu Katayama, JPN 93.50
  • Patrick Burgener, SUI 91.00
  • Ikko Anai, JPN 90.50
  • Toby Miller, USA 90.25
  • Jake Pates, USA 89.00
  • Chase Josey, USA 88.50
  • Scotty James, AUS 86.75
  • Yuto Totsuka, JPN 85.00
  • Elias Allenspach, SUI 81.50
  • Kent Callister, AUS 79.50
WOMEN'S SNOWBOARD FINALISTS 1-8
  • Chloe Kim, USA 95.25
  • Maddie Mastro, USA 89.00
  • Arielle Gold, USA 84.50
  • Xuetong Cai, CHN 82.50
  • Queralt Castellet, ESP 81.25
  • Haruna Masumoto, JPN 76.50
  • Kurumi Imai, JPN 72.75
  • Leng Qiu, CHN 64.50

THURSDAY 6TH DECEMBER

PEAK PERFORMANCE HITS THE UK

The Swedish sports fashion label has opened its first stand-alone pop-up store in the UK.

It is in Guildford in Surrey.

You can explore Peak Performance's collections under one roof until January 31st 2019 at 161, High Street, Guildford on the corner by Jefferies Passage.

"We're thrilled to be opening the first UK Peak Performance pop-up store in Guildford," said David Walton, Co-founder of the Peak Performance pop-up in Guildford.

"Our mission is to provide the ultimate destination for existing and new fans of Peak Performance to be able to browse and shop all of our collections in one space.

"We're hoping this will pave the way for further store roll-outs in the future."

See here for further details

Peak Performance in the UKPeak Performance in the UK

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TUESDAY 4TH DECEMBER

OUCH X 3

GB freestyle skier Mike Rowlands - brother of Madi - recently launched a crowdfunding campaign to help him compete.

He's 30% towards his goal of raising £6,000 to fund his season.

Unfortunately, he has to report a 'little hiccup' in his plans.

"A couple of weeks ago, I landed awkwardly while doing some trampoline training I knew immediately that something was wrong and went straight to the hospital where I was told that I'd fractured a metatarsal," he says.

In fact, he's fractured his first, second and fourth metarsals.

Mike Rowlands' footThe damage

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It scuppered his plans to head to the mountains last weekend but he should be able to walk on it within three weeks and be fully mobile again in six.

Mike is a slopestyle skier and has competed in Europa and World Cups for GB.

He narrowly missed selection for the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.

 

Mike RowlandsMike Rowlands

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mike's dad, Daran, is urging well wishes to continue supporting Mike's funding campaign to ensure he doesn't go the same way as GB Park & Pipe teammate Molly Summerhayes.

As we report today, she's had to retire at 21 because she doesn't have the money to continue:

Meanwhile, Mike's younger sister Madi - a Youth Winter Olympics gold medallist - is doing well after her long lay-off.

Her rehab's over and she'll be back on snow very soon.

Find out more and contribute to Mike's crowdfunding on the at the website makeachamp.com/mikerowlands

 

MONDAY 3RD DECEMBER

SUPER SHIFFRIN & MARVELLOUS MUSGRAVE

The American ski racer, Mikaela Shiffrin has joined a small and select group of skiers who have won Alpine World Cup races in all five major disciplines.

The reigning overall World Cup champion took her first ever super-G title at Lake Louise in Canada on Sunday.

She has also won World Cup events in slalom, giant slalom, downhill and alpine combined.

Mikaela ShiffrinMikaela Shiffrin - photo Aspen Snowmass

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

23-year-old Shiffrin is only the 7th woman to win in the five major World Cup disciplines.

She joins her teammate Lindsey Vonn, Austria's Petra Kronberger, Croatia's Janica Kostelic, Slovenia's Tina Maze and Swedish skiers Anja Parson and Pernilla Wiberg.

Shiffrin has actually done better than them all as she's also won in the relatively new World Cup discipline of parallel slalom - which the International Ski Federation (FIS) now refers to as the 6th alpine discipline.

That makes her the first skier - female or male - to win in all six.

Meanwhile there was a superb result for GB's cross-country skier, Andrew Musgrave at the weekend.

Andrew MusgraveAndrew Musgrave

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He finished 6th in a World Cup 15km race in Lillehammer, Norway.

It's his third best result in a World Cup event.

GB Snowsport posted this video, which includes a very excitable commentary, in Norwegian:

 

SUNDAY 2ND DECEMBER

5 PEOPLE BURIED IN JACKSON HOLE AVALANCHE

The avalanche occurred at 10AM on Saturday morning on the Expert Chutes run.

About 15 people including children belonging to a local ski club were on the slope when the 45m wide avalanche struck.

They were all rescued and no-one was seriously injured.

One woman was almost completely buried with just her head and hand above the surface.

The area has been bombed by the ski patrol and pronounced safe, earlier in the day.

It is the first inbounds avalanche in the resort that has impacted on skiers and snowboarders for a decade.

SATURDAY 1ST DECEMBER

LINDSEY VONN DELAYS RETIREMENT

The 34-year old has said she wants to race at Lake Louise one last time.

She missed the event this year due to injury.
Now she has said she will not retire at the end of this season but will continue next winter, but retire after Lake Louise.

"Getting injured again this season was not part of my plan," she said.

"For me, Lake Louise has always been my spot.

"I would regret it for the rest of my life if I didn't take the chance to push out from the starting gate for one last time at Lake Louise."

Her goal this season is to surpass the record of 86 World Cup wins held by the legendary Swedish skier, Ingemar Stenmark.

She is currently four short on 82.

Lindsey VonnLindsey Vonn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TRAVIS RICE COMPETES IN FWT

The freeride snowboarder will be in Hakuba for the first stop of the Freeride World Tour.

"Really looking forward to competing in Hakuba this January with the best line up of riders to date and an event venue that provides endless opportunity for expression!" he said.

"Honored to get a wild card, as for me, it's the perfect way to kick the real winter season off in a place that leaves any free-rider wide eyes and inspired."

Travis RiceTravis Rice

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SEASON SKI PASSES IN SCOTLAND

The tickets allow skiers and snowboarders to go where snow and weather conditions are best on any given day at any of the resorts in Scotland.

There are still a few available to buy, although stocks are dwindling.

Chair of Ski-Scotland, Andy Meldrum, said: "once they're gone, they're gone! Each year there is only a limited number of these tickets available and we tend to find they disappear like snow off a dyke at this time of year as they make excellent Christmas presents."

One of the resorts, The Lecht, has been busy making snow with its snowfactory:

The Lecht, ScotlandThe Lecht, Scotland

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Lecht, ScotlandThe Lecht, Scotland

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And staying with news from Scotland...

 

NEVIS RANGE PARTNERS WITH DSUK

Disability Snowsport UK and the Scottish resort have announced a new partnership.

It will involve both parties working together to make the UK's highest snowsports destination more accessible to all regardless of ability.

There will be more specialist rental equipment available for disabled skiers and snowboarders at the resort, together with increased access to DSUK qualified instructor time.

"We are really excited about our partnership with Disability Snowsports UK for this coming winter, " said the Marketing Manager at Nevis Range Mountain Experience, Nikki Stafford.

"Partnering with DSUK means that our mountain will become even more accessible to all abilities and at an affordable price."

"The partnership will also enable us to provide a training facility for para athletes, as well providing the facilities and equipment to develop the skills of up and coming para athletes."

"This is a fantastic addition to our current adaptive snowsport schools at dry slopes and indoor snow centres throughout the UK, and a great opportunity to try out a mountain resort before joining us on one of our trips abroad," said the CEO of Disability Snowsport UK Mark Kelvin.

 

EXCELLENT WINTER OPENING FOR SNOWMASS

Snowmass Ski Area in Colorado, USA, started off its season with more than 3,000 skiers on 570 acres of terrain and 20 trails, sunshine and clear, bright blue skies.

"It was really strong, and one of our better openings," said Aspen Skiing Co. vice president of communications Jeff Hanle.

Last season the resort began with only two runs, Elk Camp Meadows and Fanny Hill, open - offering a total of 19 acres.

The picture has been reflected across the USA as many resorts have got off to a record-breaking start.

Snow at SnowmassSnow at Snowmass

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the mountains.

For the Spirit of the Mountains - PlanetSKI: Number One for ski news

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