Hometown of Championships
The Alpine World Ski Championships are the most important championships in alpine ski racing and take place every two years. For the local Engadine public, St. Moritz 2017 was already the fifth major event of its kind. Looking back into the past…
World Alpine Ski Championships were held for the first time in 1931. Initially, they were called the FIS Competitions, FIS Championships or simply FIS Races but from 1937 the events have borne the official title: World Championships. Until 1939 the championships took place annually. After the Second World War the World Championships were held every two years from 1948 to 1982, whereby up until the Olympic Winter Games of 1980, the Olympic winners were simultaneously crowned also as World Champions. The exception to this were the World Championships in the Sierra Nevada, which took place only in 1996 as there had been an acute lack of snow in the preceding winter.
St. Moritz 2003
The Alpine World Ski Championships 2003 in St. Moritz were, for all the partners involved, a huge success and for many years the most memorable event in the Upper Engadine. All the races took place according to schedule, without any irregularities and without postponement – for the first time in 33 years! The 170,000 spectators were treated to thrilling contests without any serious accident – and these mostly in brilliant sunshine.
Fabulous TV and print images as well as exciting races led to record ratings worldwide and to massive publicity for St. Moritz and the Engadine. Investments of around 1 billion Swiss Francs in projects on the mountains, in the valley and in the village in preparation for the championships have meant that St. Moritz is today fully equipped as a tourist destination– and the world also knows it.
The secret stars of the major event were, however, the 1,200 volunteers – the so-called Voluntari. Their friendliness and selfless commitment generated enormous sympathy, goodwill and understanding. They succeeded in creating an atmosphere of hospitality, tolerance and fairness, which was a decisive contribution to shaping the human quality of the event and which all visitors will retain fond memories of. The Voluntari organisation still exists to this day. The attractive frame programme made the World Championships into a powerful event and an attractive total experience, which together massively strengthened both the impact of the event locally as well as in the media.
St. Moritz 1974
The 23rd Alpine World Ski Championships were held from 3 to 10 February 1974 in St. Moritz. Among the best-known medal winners were names such as Franz Klammer, Gustav Thöni, Hans Hinterseer, Piero Gross, Annemarie Moser-Pröll and Hanni Wenzel.
St. Moritz 1948
Six competitions in alpine ski sports were included in the programme for the 5th Olympic Winter Games 1948 in St. Moritz. Athletes placed among the first three in the Downhill, the Slalom and the Combination received both an Olympic medal and a World Championship medal because these competitions were also counted as the 10th Alpine World Ski Championships.
St. Moritz 1934
The 4th Alpine World Ski Championships were held from 15 to 17 February 1934 in St. Moritz. There were no Austrian skiers at the start since the Austrian federation did not send a team due to the civil conflict in Austria at that time (Februarkämpfe).