2008 Meetings of the International Masters Ski Jumping Committee

The IMC Committee met twice in Taivalkoski, Finland during the 2008 IMC. The first meeting was held on Friday afternoon, Feb. 29, 2008 in the Pub Room of the Hotel Herkko.

Present were six members of the Board of Officers:

  • Klaus Günther (GER, Chairman)
  • Torbjorn Haugen (NOR, Vice Chmn.)
  • Anton Zapf (GER, Culture and Communication)
  • Åke Saloniemi (SWE, NC Chmn.)
  • Erkki Ahtiainen, (FIN, Asst. Chmn.for NC)
  • Don West (USA, secretary and webmaster)
(Board member Alexander Diess (AUT, Tech. Expert) was traveling with the Austrian Nordic Combined Ski Team at the World Cup event in Lahti, FIN and so was unable to attend.)

Also present were representatives of ten nations (AUT, EST, FIN, GBR, GER, NOR, RUS, SWE, UKR, USA) and several non-voting guests.
Latvia was new at IMC XIX and did not have a representative at the meeting.
Also missing were ten IMC nations which sent no teams to Taivalkoski: AUS, CAN, CZE, FRA, HUN, ITA, POL, SLO, SVK, SWI.

The meeting was called to order at 6:09 pm by Chairman Klaus Günther (GER) who welcomed the members and guests who were present, and distributed a folder of notes including an agenda. Klaus then delivered his brief Chairman's Summary of the year's activities.

1) The contact and exchange of ideas among ourselves in the IMC board was and is very good. We have a good image at least in the ski jumping world and that is getting better and better.

2) We even have the attention of the FIS. The FIS discussed the IMC last summer at the FIS meeting in Zurich before we went to Einsiedeln to the masters summer grand prix. Walter Hofer, FIS director for ski jumping, described us as a negative phenomenon with this kind of sport. We should stop these competitions respectively we should get in line with the FIS rules. That's information from Alexander Diess and Gary Furrer. Gary Furrer, president of the Swiss association for ski jumping, was absolutely not of the same opinion and he had a big dispute with Walter Hofer over the IMC in front of all FIS members in Zurich. I invited Walter Hofer to the masters summer grand prix in Einsiedeln may for a short meeting but he was 50 km away in Zurich. No answer yet. I don't know whether we should discuss the FIS topic today.

3) The summer grand prix was a great success in Einsiedeln Switzerland. We were 8 nations; we could jump on all hills from K-20 to HS 117. The IMC has made many friends. We have found good support for the IMC with our IMC Swiss chairman Ralf Schnyder and especially through Gary Furrer he is our partner for the IMC and he is a FIS member. Einsiedeln invited us through Gary Furrer for 2008. He hope that we want to come 2008.

4) We: Åke, Anton, Erkki and I met in Taivalkoski in November to clear up the IMC 2008. Our thanks go to Tapio and Erkki for this inviting and very constructive stay. We did find out some points that we have to discuss in the captains' meeting today. (More in the topics.)
Anton tried the organ in the church and was so enthusiastic that he organized a classical concert. Anton worked very hard to create a unique music program. But unfortunately the General Manager from the Conservatory stopped the concert four weeks before the IMC event although the mayor of Taivalkoski decided to pay for this concert. Anton Zapf organized under immense stress one more time a new concert team. I think we can say the program was so excellent. Congratulation Anton. We have to discuss whether this could be an important pillar in the IMC.

Owing to the shortness of time, Klaus suggested skipping through the agenda and considering only the most important items.

1. The Nordic Combined Team Sprint -- The Committee observed that this year's test event had been a great success and agreed to make such a team sprint a regular part of future IMC's. Discussions regarding possible jumping during the Nordic Combined sprint came to no conclusion.

2. IMC Host for 2009 -- Günther announced that we had formal bids from two possible hosts: Harrachov, CZE (site of the 2002 IMC) and Ruhpolding, GER. Both venues were described and after some discussion, secretary Don West conducted a roll-call vote of the representatives of the ten nations present. The winning bid was Ruhpolding (9 votes to 1).

3. Summer Grand Prix -- Günther told the Committee that he feels that a summer event is a very important part of IMC development, and that we had two bids for the 2008 Summer Grand Prix: Einsiedeln, SWI and Villach, AUT. After some discussion, another roll call vote was taken. Einsiedeln was chosen (6 votes for Einsiedeln, 2 for Villach, 2 'no opinion').

4. IMC Host for 2010 -- We have two bids for to host IMC 2010: Planica, SLO and Park City, USA.

The Planica bid came through Kristof Gaspirc and would combine our event with several others, forming a Masters Winter Games. A brochure mentioned jump sites at Kranj as well as Planica and the Committee agreed that more specific information will be needed.

The Park City bid came through Don West, who describe the situation. Greg Poirier, the director of the Park City Olympic jumping venue (SLC 2002) is enthusiastic about hosting IMC. A benefit of coming to USA in 2010 is that European jumpers might fly to North America for both IMC and the Vancouver Olympics on a single airplane ticket. Committee members sounded enthused about the idea of returning to USA for IMC. Don West will continue to work with Poirier to try to develop a plan to bring to the IMC Committee.

5. Expansion of "recruitment" to NC -- Klaus Günther At present, we welcome a limited group of pre-master jumpers, aged 25-29, to the IMC as a way to spark interest in the younger skiers. Klaus Günther suggested that we expand this to invite also a similar small group of Nordic Combined skier ages 25-29 for the same reason, and with the same restrictions. The Committee agreed that this should be done.

5. Entry fees for IMC -- Günther suggested that the Committee go on record as limiting individual entry fees to 25 €  per event (20 €  for NC) which should include the 5 €  per entry tax to come back to the IMC Committee. A vote was taken and the resolution passed.

6. Election of Officers -- Günther pointed out that the Committee was overdue to elect new officers and asked that this be done in this meeting. The representative of Norway objected because proper procedure had not been followed. The rules of the Committee call for announcement of elections no later than the first team leaders meeting of the IMC in which the election should take place. This was not done. Materials and information for the IMC Committee meeting were not distributed until the beginning of this meeting. As the time approached for the evening's awards ceremony, it was agreed to meet again tomorrow (Saturday) at 5 pm, or perhaps a bit later, so more Committee business could be handled.

The Unfortunate Confrontation between Team NOR and the Organizers -- Torbjørn Haugen briefly explained, from the Norwegian point of view, what brought about the problem. Along the way, the organizers threatened to disqualify all Norwegian athletes, and Team Norway countered by threatening to boycott the remaining events. The committee agreed that this situation was lamentable and hoped that it would be cleared up amicably. Apparently it was.

The Committee meeting was adjourned at 7:50 pm.

Session two of the Committee meeting Saturday, March 1, again held the Pub Room at the Hotel Herkko.

At 6:09 pm, after waiting for sufficient representatives to assemble, Chairman Klaus Günther called the meeting was called to order. The same officers were present and the same nations were represented as in the Friday meeting.

Because procedures had not been followed (no advance warning of an election) the representative of Norway proposed that the present slate of officers be presented and elected by acclamation for one more year of service, a real election to follow at IMC 2009.

Sweden suggested that we must at least consider and vote on the case of Technical Expert Alexander Diess. Diess travels with the Austrian Nordic Combined A-Team and cannot be present for winter IMC events. It was pointed out that much of the work that Diess does is advance work, done in the months between IMC, and his presence at IMC is not required for him to do this work. Indeed it was Diess who evaluated Ruhpolding as a possible host.

Following a brief discussion, it was agreed that we could use a designated person to act as our contact person with the host of the upcoming IMC. This delegate would be chosen to serve for just the single year until the IMC in question and, for the following year, a different host would make it natural to choose a different contact person. The Committee agreed to establish such a position at the same level in the Committee structure as the Chairman for NC (presently Åke Salomieni).

James Lambert was presented as a candidate for this new position. After his presentation and some discussion, James was elected unanimously to serve for one year and deal with the organizers in Ruhpolding.

One outcome of the previous discussion was the recognition that we need written job descriptions for our officers.

The meeting was adjourned at 6:15 pm.

Respectfully submitted, Don West (USA)            [ See Minutes of 2007 meeting. ]

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