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- Wengen, Switzerland
- JAN 13, 2012 at 12:00 AM
- JAN 15, 2012 at 11:59 PM
The FIS Alpine Ski World Cup is one of the top international ski competitions in the world. Second only to the quadrennial Winter Olympics, it was launched back in 1966 and soon backed by International Ski Federation (FIS) president Marc Hodler. It became an official FIS event in the spring of 1967 and the first World Cup ski race was held in Berchtesgaden, West Germany, on January 5th of the same year.
Races are held primarily at ski resorts in the Alps in Europe, with regular additional stops in Scandinavia, North America, and east Asia. Competitors attempt to achieve the best time in four disciplines: slalom, giant slalom, Super G, and downhill. The fifth event, the combined, employs the downhill and slalom. The racer with the most points at the end of the season is declared the World Cup champion, and inherits the coveted 9kg crystal globe trophy. Many consider the World Cup to be a more valuable title than the Olympics or the biennial World Championships, since it requires a competitor to ski at an extremely high level in several disciplines throughout the season, and not just in one race.
Wengen, located in the heart of the Swiss alps, is a small village of only 1300 inhabitants and is famous thanks the World Cup races that have been a firm fixture since 1930 on the Lauberhorn slope. Wengen boasts one of the most beautiful backdrops of any resort in the world surrounded by the spectacular glaciers of the Eiger and Jungfrau mountains. The resort sits high up at an excellent vantage point which affords great snow coverage and superb sunshine. 98km of slopes are available to skiers of all ages and abilities providing a magical experience for tourists wanting to enjoy spectacular views and pure mountain air.