Success on new roads.
Entrepreneur Family man
Today. Brand ambassador and entrepreneur.
The capacity for tunnel vision was an essential element of my success. In a tunnel you can only see in one direction, and you follow a single point, a single line. During my time as a top athlete, this tunnel vision was a key to success on the racecourse and during my training. Near the end of my career I found the right balance between focus and lightness, more of a 360-degree field of view.
That helped me to recognize moments in which focus was unnecessary, enabling me to let people get closer to me. Anyone who wants to be a brand ambassador and entrepreneur, or is committed to helping others, must keep a sense of openness, and also remain attached to the values that made them strong: reliability, loyalty, concentration, persistence. These characteristics – and my experiences – help me to see things from a different perspective or think about them more universally.
Brand ambassador. Head. Travelhouse. Kjus. Audi. BKW. UYN.
When your cruciate ligament tears at age 31 – as happened to me during training in Adelboden in 2005 – there is no guarantee you will be able to continue your professional career. That winter saw numerous young, fast skiers in the starting houses. And suddenly I had been let go by my equipment outfitter.
The changeover to Head was a reset for me. New confidence, new material, a new mindset. Then came my first successes, and with them, a sense of calm. I no longer had to be so hard on myself. And the successes continued. Today I advise Head in their search for new ski talent, and I support the company in evaluating the future Head team. It has been an inspiring partnership.
Throughout my career I have skied primarily on hard, groomed slopes. I have very little experience plowing through true powder – too little, in fact – I am at home on racing skis rather than wide skis. Next to 40 pairs of racing skis, a single pair of wide skis would not have seen any use.
After the season I sought some recuperation time, rather than nine hours of flight and then jet lag to undertake a powder-skiing adventure in Canada. But in 2009 I tried it anyway – powder skiing in Canada for the first time. And it was a blast. Together with sharing the wonderful feeling of enjoying a pristine deep-snow slope with my companions, it reminded me of the big party after a racing victory, where you can share your win with thousands of fans at the finish line.
Audi has been my companion throughout my entire skiing career. Our journey began in 1998. Along with my first Olympic medal in Nagano came my first Audi, a blue S4: my Audi Quattro. I have driven almost every model over the past 20 years – from the A3 to the SQ7.
Thanks to Audi I have always arrived safely at my destination – and have never missed a race. :-) And Audi is still on the move. Today I am driving the fully electric e-tron. Quiet, safe, and always powerful – a really cool feeling.
Olympic medalist and two-time world champion Lasse Kjus had always been a great role model for me – both as a skier and a person. He was a picture of calm itself, with an ability to summon peak performance at just the right moment. And a Norwegian, no less.
My collaboration with Kjus was the logical result of my personal esteem for him, along with my conviction that the brand, the company, the quality, and the philosophy all fit with the values I embody. I appreciate it greatly that Kjus saw this as well, and still does. I have been a proud ambassador for the company since 2012.
UYN – pronounced WIN – stands for Unleash Your Nature. For years, functional underclothing has been a part of my daily outfit. And so I am kind of a specialist, especially as a ski racer. And that is still true today, when I spend all day in the snow with my partners and their guests.
In fact, my motto is: there is no bad weather, just bad clothing. Of course, I don't need to worry about this with UYN. This company has a solution for every situation and activity – even when I am traveling with my family.
If we want to be counted among the world champions of snow sports in the future, we must take care to get young people excited about it and support them in different ways. As a young skier I would have been glad to have this kind of support. And so I take it upon myself to support and promote youth involvement.
Giron Jurassien is dear to my heart. As a youth I was a member of our regional association, and today I serve on the board and as an ambassador for this organization. Giron Jurassien has been combining school and sport since 2009. This professionalization enables young people from my region to reach the national and even international levels.
DC Golf Charity.
My golf tournament. At Les Bois, a wonderful golf course in Jura where I learned to play, I organize a golf tournament and invite personalities from my circle of business associates, friends, and public figures. Half of the money the tournament generates goes to Giron Jurassien. The rest is donated to other selected projects that are important to me.
Backing and support.
For a very long time, there was nothing else for me besides skiing. More precisely, I have been skiing since age 3, as soon as I could keep myself seated on the ski lift across from my parents' house. As I became more and more serious about my hobby, I realized how important it was to have a family to provide backing and support if I needed it. And after the end of my career my family circle finally expanded. I met Manuela, who grew up in the beautiful canton of Graubünden, in Bergell. When we met, she was working as an emergency physician at REGA (medical assistance by helicopter). We first met at the World Cup in Lenzerheide in 2014. She was there as the director of medical services, and I was there as a guest of Head and hosted the winner of the "Silvano Beltrametti Race". She shared my love of nature – and fortunately of Jura also. We built our home there and are the happy parents of our children Noé und Amélie.