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St. Moritz snow polo—a crazy idea, but it works St. Moritz snow polo—a crazy idea, but it works St. Moritz snow polo—a crazy idea, but it works
The Snow Polo World Cup has been taking place on the frozen lake at St. Moritz for 35 years. The gala dinners and VIP passes are always sold out for this posh and unusual event. So what’s the secret?
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Matt Leighton
How the IOC is learning from its past mistakes
The International Olympic Committee says it will no longer invest in new infrastructures in host cities if they’re not needed for the future. IOC Olympic Games Executive Director Christophe Dubi is applying what he calls “smart economics” to save billions of dollars on the upcoming Lausanne Youth Olympic Games and Tokyo Summer Olympics in 2020.
Matt Leighton
Olympic champion Hoefflin: “I try to only take the plane if I have to”
Changing habits in the Swiss sports world is an uphill battle, says Nicholas Bornstein, founder of Protect Our Winters Switzerland. Swiss Olympic ski champion Sarah Hoefflin, also a member of the organization, talks about the challenges and contradictions of being a globetrotting athlete trying to live sustainably.
Matt Leighton
Chappelet: “The idea is not to make a profit out of these games”
Olympic capital Lausanne will host the third edition of the 2020 Winter Youth Olympic Games, which features athletes from 15 to 18 years old. In the first of our monthly series looking deeper into the event, Jean-Loup Chappelet, professor at IDHEAP and Olympics expert, talks about the historical, academic, cultural, and business implications of hosting the first Olympic event in Switzerland since the 1948 Winter Games in St. Moritz.
Matt Leighton
Sustainability expert: “By definition an event will never be green”
Françoise Jaquet, president of the Swiss Alpine Club, and Neil Beecroft, co-founder of Sport and Sustainability International, have a common goal: to help preserve Switzerland’s natural beauty through the world of sport. Sports correspondent Matt Leighton caught up with both of them at the Moving Mountains Forum in Vaud earlier this month.
Matt Leighton
The new Swiss flying sailboat that may change the market
The TF35 flying sailboat is the first of its kind, says class manager Bertrand Favre. The Swiss-made foiling catamaran, which made its successful debut on Lake Geneva last month, will launch a whole new market, but only for those with at least 750,000 euros to spare, not to mention the 500,000 per season to maintain it.
Matt Leighton
Switzerland’s “Jetman” wants to turn us into a “flying species”
Swiss pilot Yves Rossy is back in Switzerland after some years based in Dubai. Known to many as the “Jetman,” Rossy is perfecting his jet wing, which now successfully flies vertically up and down (if only indoors). Before he gets new sponsors, the next step is to take his invention outdoors. Now all he needs to do is improve the safety features to “turn humans into a flying species.”
Matt Leighton
Schwingfest showdown: the Swiss event of Olympic proportions
On August 23, more than 350,000 fans will descend on Zug for the three-day event known as Schwingfest. The Federal Swiss Wrestling and Alpine Festival takes place every three years but takes at least six years to plan. The stadium built especially for the “mega event” seats more than 56,000 and is the largest construction of its kind in the world. Heinz Tännler, president of the organizing committee, talks about what it takes to pull off “the biggest event in Switzerland.”
Matt Leighton
The business of e-bikes in Switzerland
The electric bike was patented back in 1895, but it is only in the last 15 years that the market has really taken off. Switzerland saw a jump in sales in 2018 and e-bike manufacturers predict that level of growth will continue, says Andy Kessler, CEO of Flyer.
Matt Leighton
The business of golfing in Switzerland
There used to be around 40 exclusive golf clubs in Switzerland that were considered too high-brow and unapproachable, but the market has since changed radically, says Keith Marriott, president of the Swiss Professional Golfers Association. From raising young Swiss golf champions to doing business on the golf course, the scene has become much more diverse and affordable, as he explains to Matt Leighton.
Matt Leighton
The business of horse riding in Switzerland
Switzerland has a rich past in horse riding, with a history of freely-available horses and access to stables, not to mention Swiss Olympic equestrian champion Steve Guerdat. But the sport can be pricey. Alban Poudret, editor-in-chief of Le Cavalier Romand, says that while CHF 20,000 won’t buy you a sport horse, it can certainly “buy you a good friend.”
Matt Leighton
The business of sport climbing in Switzerland
Since it was announced that sport climbing will make its debut on the Olympic program in Tokyo 2020, its popularity in Switzerland has taken on another dimension. The easy proximity to mountains has always made it easy to climb, but now even indoor climbing has had a major boost. Hanspeter Sigrist, head of sport climbing at the Swiss Alpine Club in Bern, talks about qualifying at next year’s Olympics and the real dream: to host the 2023 Climbing World Championships in Bern.
Matt Leighton
What you need to know about indoor climbing in Switzerland
Hanspeter Sigrist, head of sport climbing at the Swiss Alpine Club in Bern, discusses indoor climbing, which has seen a boost in popularity thanks in part to its debut next year at the Tokyo Olympics.
Matt Leighton
The business of sailing in Switzerland: “Every boat needs a crew”
Despite being a landlocked country, Switzerland has the second highest number of sailors per capita after New Zealand. Bernard Schopfer, organizer of the Yacht Racing Forum, takes Matt Leighton through the country’s long tradition of sailing and explains how easy it is to join the Swiss sailing community.
Matt Leighton
Switzerland catches up to the growing love for stand-up paddling
After making its debut in Switzerland 10 years ago, the stand-up paddle market is thriving, and Cédric Reynard, founder of Geneva-based Water Walk, is capitalizing on this booming trend. The next big push, he says, will be destinations with guides for mass stand-up paddle tourism.
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