The Winter Olympics in Albertville were the third to be held in France, after the games in Chamonix in 1924 and Grenoble in 1968.
This world event, internationally renowned and followed by nearly 2 billion viewers, enabled Courchevel and other major resorts in Tarentaise and Beaufortain to benefit from the significant visibility.
As well as promoting Savoie ski destinations to the eyes of the world, the Olympic Games gave rise to the development of numerous infrastructures in the region which are still in service to this day: road network improvements, the TGV train line and station renovations, hospitals, etc.
To find out more about these Olympic Games, why not take the opportunity to discover the museum in Albertville.
Le Praz was already equipped with a ski jump prior to the Olympic Games in 1992, but for this competition, two extra jumps were created: one of 90 metres and the other of 120 metres. They were subsequently fitted out for summer use.
At this games, two types of ski jumping competition took place in Courchevel Le Praz: ski jumping and Nordic combined (a combination of cross country skiing and ski jumping).
Huge skis to fly even further The length of the skis is of paramount importance in obtaining lift and is calculated according to the size and the BMI (body mass index, which makes it possible to determine the ideal weight) of the skier.
The size of the skis is much larger than for other disciplines. To give you an example, an athlete measuring 1.73 metres will use skis with a width of 11 centimetres and a length of 2.53 meters, ie. 80 centimetres more than their height.
For comparison, normal skis we use on the piste are more or less the same as your height.
The stages of a jump Once equipped with these huge skis, the athlete proceeds with their jump. This takes place in three stages and the aim is for the skier to jump the furthest possible distance:
2.The take-off, at the end of the track:this is the key moment that will determine the jump, the take-off must be powerful, precise and, above all, performed at the precise time.
The current record The most recent athlete to break the world record was Stefan Kraft who jumped 253.5 metres in 2017. To give you an idea of what that represents, it’s around the length of not one, but TWO football pitches!
This summer the 23rd edition of the ski jumping Summer Grand Prix took place. It has been organised every year since the Winter Olympics (just before, in fact, as the first edition was in 1991).
It is the only stage of the world cup in this discipline to take place in France in summer just as in winter.
Sport, aerobatic displays, fun moments and a party in the evening… The summer grand prix is not only a ski jumping competition but also a popular event to experience! See you there next summer..?
An image is worth a thousand words, discover the ski jumping summer grand prix in Courchevel.