World champions love perfect slopes

The exclusive supplier to the Alpine World Ski Championships in Schladming

As exclusive supplier to Planai & Hochwurzen Bahnen for the 2013 Alpine World Ski Championships, the snow groomer manufacturer Prinoth enjoys the trust of the international skiing elite. At the World Championship press conference with Karl Höflehner, technical manager of the Planai & Hochwurzen Bahnen, Herbert Mandl, head trainer of the ÖSV Austrian ladies ski team, and FIS Race Director Hans Pieren the subject of trail grooming was discussed in depth.

As exclusive snow groomer supplier to the 2013 Alpine Ski World Championships in Schladming, Prinoth was responsible for optimum conditions on the competition trails and had seventeen snow groomers finished in classic green and white, the colors of Styria, deployed for that purpose, delivering the top technology and quality that are crucial to such an event. With their mature tilling systems, the Prinoth groomers produce perfect slopes, whatever the snow conditions.

"Competitors count on optimum conditions. Only if the trail is in perfect shape can the ski stars do their best. That is simply the most important thing. The results have to be impeccable," explains Karl Höflehner, technical manager of Planai & Hochwurzen Bahnen. "Especially during a major event such as the World Championships, the snow groomers have to be absolutely reliable. We cannot afford any glitches here," he adds to emphasize the high quality requirements and expectations with regard to reliability. During the fifteen years of partnership between the groomer manufacturer and Planai, firm trust in Prinoth’s products has been established.

Unrivaled trail quality

A significant contribution to the final result is made by the Power tiller. Continual developments over the decades have made it the best tiller on the market.

"A racing slope has to be extremely hard and compact," explains FIS Race Director Hans Pieren. "The quality of the slope is very important. At the FIS we attach great importance to the final product. The surface just has to be perfectly tilled," he says to emphasize the relevance of the quality of the tilling. Such deep and fine-grained tilling ensures that the slope is significantly more durable. This is an important point for competitions especially. "In order to ensure fair conditions for a race, all the competitors – from the first to the last – must have the same snow conditions," Herbert Mandl, ÖSV ladies head trainer, explains with regard to the requirements for racing slopes. "The influence of the slope on the skier's run is enormous. Of course each skier has different strengths, but the snow conditions should be the same for everyone. Different degrees of slope hardness often decide between victory and defeat," he adds.

In addition to precision, efficiency is another decisive advantage of the Power tiller. The special tiller design increases service life and ensures balanced weight distribution. Particularly resilient cutting teeth prevent wear and provide long-lasting product quality. The configuration of the cutting teeth permits operation at lower speeds and thus reduces fuel consumption.

Sustainable snow grooming in Schladming

The Green World Championships at the heart of Styria were focussed not only on performance but also on sustainability in the international skiing arena. Prinoth has a clear policy on environmental protection, and in Schladming the company deployed not only its new Leitwolf, the first Euromot III B-compliant snow groomer, but also the Husky E-motion. This vehicle was launched in 2009 as the world's first snow groomer with a diesel-electric drive and was something of an ambassador for the green cause in Schladming. Together with the new Leitwolf, it is the front-runner in clean mountain technology. The Beast was also in service in Schladming. With an extra-wide working width of 7.1 m, the Beast offers a 40% higher grooming capacity than other vehicles and, in combination with its high working speed, delivers significant savings, especially in terms of fuel consumption.

Know-how from professionals for professionals

"We see ourselves as our clients' partner and pay great attention to cost efficiency and the economics from their point of view. We want our clients to gain an advantage from our vehicles. Building on our many years of experience, we are continuously working on further developments and enhancements to our products", says Prinoth’s President Werner Amort. Moreover, it is not just the snow groomer technology that counts but also the ability to take advantage of it. With its training programs for groomer drivers, Prinoth offers in-depth training on racing slope preparation and explains to participants the crucial issues for competitions and the key elements of a perfect racing slope. First-hand instruction and advice help drivers and operations managers plan and implement competition-standard grooming and guarantee fast reopening of the trails to the general public after the last competitor has passed the finishing line.


World Champion conditions in Schladming courtesy of Prinoth. Photo: Prinoth

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