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Alpina at the Slovenia House
Olympic winners put Alpina among the best in the world
Alpina was among those presented at the Slovenia House. The games in South Korea are the 10th in a row at which it has equipped the world’s elite athletes.
By continuously investing in the development and industrial design of cross-country racing boots Alpina has managed to maintain its reputation as the best manufacturer of cross-country skiing footwear in the world. It currently outfits about one third of all World Cup competitors and about seventy Olympians competing in three disciplines.
The story began in 1984, when representatives of the Alpina factory from Žiri and skiers of the Yugoslav national team attended the Alpina's first Winter Olympic Games in Sarajevo. The company has invested heavily in its development. In 1992 at the Olympics in Albertville Alpina equipped competitors in three disciplines, i.e. Alpine skiing, biathlon and cross-country skiing. The first Olympic gold for the company was won by Norwegian Thomas Alsgaard.
After 2000 Alpina started investing in the industrial design of innovative and technically perfected sport footwear and soon the Alpina racing CL boot received its first design award. At the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, when Alpina was the only sponsor of the Slovenia Olympic team, the elite cross-country skiing and biathlon athletes won two medals wearing this boot. Subsequently, many of the top athletes joined the Alpina racing team and the company from Žiri reached a 32% share of the global market in cross-country footwear.
"Since 2002 Alpina has gradually consolidated its position in the strong competition of equippers of cross-country skiing and biathletes, mostly with the top-quality racing boot, which was already one step ahead of the competition," remembers Janez Novak, long-standing product manager.
Alpina at Olympic Games
At the Olympic Games in Vancouver the athletes wearing the recognisable red boots collected as many as twenty medals. The most successful was Norwegian Petter Northug with two golds, one silver and one bronze. Those Olympics were also a milestone for Slovenia, as Petra Majdič won the first cross-country skiing Olympic medal for Slovenia.
At the beginning of the Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang Alpina proudly remembers the great achievements of Sochi, when the Alpina racing team won a record 35 medals. The most successful winners were Marcus Hellner, Johan Olsson, Ingvild Flugstad Oestber and Emma Wikken, while Vesna Fabjan won a bronze medal in the sprint.
The 23rd Winter Olympic games in Pyeongchang in South Korea are the tenth in a row for Alpina. Approximately seventy athletes will wear Alpina boots while competing on the tracks in three disciplines. "In the women's cross country skiing the majority of Olympic hopefuls on the Alpina racing team are from the Swedish national team headed by Charlotte Kalla and Stina Nilsson. The most promising among the men are Marcus Hellner and Alexey Poltoranin. In biathlon Ondrej Moravec and Dominik Landertinger, along with Polish athletes Weronika Nowakovska and Monika Hojnish, have the greatest chances of reaching the Olympic podium," forecasts Vasja Rupnik, Head of the Alpina's Sport Division.
Text by Polona Prešeren
Photo: OKS/ Aleš Fevžer