NOV 10, 2016
World Cup racing is so much more than just a series of races happening during the winter months.
It’s a huge team effort that keeps quite a few people busy on the equipment side alone – all year around. Hardly anyone knows that better than Yann Vallet, former cross-country World Cup athlete and service man, now in charge of Atomic Nordic and the new Redster Carbon Classic skis.
STRAIGHT FROM THE WORLD CUP
“Been there, done that” – a phrase Yann Vallet could use all the time, because he truly knows cross-country skiing from any angle. A former athlete himself representing the French national team in the 1990s Yann became a service man in the World Cup circuit after his retirement as a racer, servicing top athletes for a number of years. He then switched to the management side and today Yann is responsible for Atomic’s cross-country business.
RIGHT AT THE RACETRACK
Especially when it comes to World Cup racing, Yann’s experience is invaluable. He’s backed by a great team of experts, too. “We are really close to our athletes. My racing team is right there at the racetrack at any cross-country World Cup event to support our athletes with the best equipment,” says Yann. That includes extensive testing before the race by Atomic staff, right at the venue. “Our guys thoroughly check the snow and weather conditions to select and prepare the right skis for the competition.”
But it’s not just about servicing the athletes to make them win. Quite the contrary, the athletes also have a major say in the developments of new skis. “We are constantly in touch and have our athletes test new developments. And we make sure we turn their feedback into innovation.”
“In the Nordic team we always try to find the next evolution, the next step to give to all skiers and athletes the best equipment possible.”
MADE IN AUSTRIA
Yann’s development team is based at Atomic’s headquarters in Altenmarkt, right in the middle of the Austrian Alps. That’s also where Atomic’s very own ski factory is located and all high-end cross-country skis get produced. “Our development team can test new racing constructions all year round, right on the factory’s doorstep, that’s a huge asset,” says Yann.
While quite a few people on team have a professional racing background, there’s one name that truly stands out: Tobias Angerer, two times overall World Cup winner and multiple medalist at Olympic Games and World Championships who acts as a brand ambassador for Atomic. “After I retired as an athlete, I wanted to use my knowledge and experience of the sport to help Atomic for the future,” says Tobi who’s become an indispensable part of the crew.
REDSTER CARBON CLASSIC
The latest innovation coming out of Altenmarkt is the new Redster Carbon Classic, a skis that’s gone through years of development before it was recently released. “The special thing about this ski is it’s not only super fast – it’s also super easy to ski,” Yann affirms. “As soon as our athletes tried this ski at the end of last year, they started using it in races. It’s lighter, faster and transfers power more directly than ever. This is the start of a whole new level of Classic race skis,” he says.