My main mission was diplomatic, to touch base with the heads of the other countries delegations where we either have many members working or, of countries where we operate courses.
The former was to clarify positions of equivalency so that should our members want to pursue another countries quals then it’s clear at what level they can cross over and then challenge the next level, and this reciprocated for their members when in NZ. The latter was to ensure that they are fully aware of what we are doing, and that we’re fulfilling our legal obligations. Also great to reiterate the importance of the MOU’s that we have in place with PSIA and CSIA, so that we do have the opportunity to offer courses to our members (conditions applying) in these countries. Our Certification overview document (in downloads section of our website) is really useful to overseas snow sport school employers. To put it in a kiwi way I was there to grease the path. There is no better way of ensuring good international relations, than forging personal connections.
Evening meetings in the huge Conference centre was another focus. ISIA, IVSS and IVSI presented their AGMs over three nights ( the 3 organisations that sit beneath the Interski umbrella).
Eric Mellner as President was returned for a 4th term, however there are 2 new VP’s; Dave Renouf from BASI and Eric Shecklelton from PSIA. We have good communication channel’s open with both these guys and we look forward to being involved with the evolution of Interski.
Interski candidate vote for 2019
The 3 biding countries had 30 minutes to present their pitch for the event. A common focus for all three was the centralization of all facilities and having the slopes close to the town centre. Thus minimizing travel time morning and night, therefore making more time available for the important stuff. Rosa Khator (Soichi) was eliminated in first round of voting and then it was between Finland (Levi) and Bulgaria (Pamporovo). The voting was close but it’s off to Bulgaria in 2019.
A personal mini-highlight was helping teach some of the local kids from Ushuaia. The Interski Ski School has been part of the last 3 congresses. Local kids get 4 sessions during the week, and instructors from different nations provide the lessons. For reasons unknown I put up my hand for the beginners group! They didn’t speak a word of English and my Spanish consisted of two words; “bravo and perfecto”. The huge smiles and laughs said it all and reminded me what it’s all about!
I also had the chance to attend the keynote lecture from a representative of “Challenge Aspen – Adaptive Snowsports – The New Emerging Market.” The focus was on the partnerships that this programme has developed and the flow on benefits to everyone involved. For me this was a standout presentation as it offered an example on what is working well and is helping grow the market. This was then followed up with the mini lecture from PSIA-AASI. They used Interski to launch their new teaching resource “Fundamental Mechanics of Alpine Skiing across Adaptive Disciplines”. For any information on adaptive programmes in New Zealand get in touch with Jane Stevens at Snowsports NZ. Great to see Adam Hall on the cover of their new teaching resource!
Argentinians were gracious hosts and despite some technical and scheduling issues they did all they could to ensure the congress was a success. All through the week I received fantastic unsolicited feedback about our teams presentations on and off snow.
I would like to congratulate the boys. Job well done! Also an especially heartfelt thank you goes to the Manager, Mark Cruden, for bringing together so successfully, the dynamic and professional team that was Interski 2015