Looking for your next big thrill? You know you are! Well, if you’re a pretty hot skier and you reckon that when it comes to world champs, there but for the cruel hand of fate goes you, here’s your chance to make it happen! Because in April, the annual Verbier High Five ski challenge takes place just a short flight away in… you guessed it, the fabulous resort of Verbier.
Tip: Read this blog post if you want to find out more about the top ski action on offer in the resort for experts.
The Low Down
The Verbier High Five is a pretty unique kind of event – pitting high profile stars of alpine skiing against anyone who wants to have a go at taking them down a peg or two. Even if you don’t exactly smash them, it’s an amazing chance to meet these guys (and girls) and get some first-hand tips. And, if you actually do come out on top, the bragging rights will be priceless.
The four disciplines included in the programme are:
- Giant slalom
- Mini KL
The top eight males and females in each category qualify for the finals, then the best two from each secure the rights to take on the super pros!
Save the date: 8 April, 2017. There’s still time to get in shape!
Not quite ready to commit before a break down of the low down? Here it comes:
Giant Slalom: It’s a slalom. And it’s giant. Ok, ok – a few more details. This requires very technical skiing, with lots of precision turns – but at the same time you’ve got to be travelling pretty damn fast to beat the clock. You’ll need your wits about you, as if you don’t pass through each of the designated flagged gates in order (there’s about 30 of them) you’ll be disqualified. Skills required: stamina, strength, precision and a cool head.
The Mini KL: Aka the Flying Kilometre. As the name suggests, this is basically downhill speed skiing, and the first to the bottom of the 1km long run is victorious. Skills required: guts, power and a small helping of craziness.
Ski Cross: This is the glamour event of the programme and the ultimate test of your skills. It’s pretty cutthroat and in each heat four participants start but only one will finish… Based on the principles of motor cross, the event involves a 600-metre course punctuated by bumps, jumps and banked turns, all the while heading down a 33% incline. The top two go through to the semi-final and then the finals consist of the victors from each semi. Simple? Not so much. Skills required: Super strength, agility and good sportsmanship – or the ability to hide the bad!
Trampoline: This one is pretty much just for fun and you don’t even need your skis (ummm, I wonder if they’ve considered that skis on might actually make this event even better…). In a nutshell it’s just a bunch of people jumping up and down on a trampoline trying to reach a giant inflatable hand. Skills required: None – although a decent understanding of how your arms and legs work would probably be an advantage.
The After Party
Strictly speaking it’s a ‘during’ as well as an ‘after’ party, with plenty of action to get you in the mood throughout the competition. The event is sponsored by Carlsberg so, naturally, Chalet de Carlsberg is the hub of the action on the day, with a number of DJs keeping the music pumping non-stop and very, very loud.
While the action on the piste takes place on Saturday the 8th, the fun really starts on Friday the7th. That’s the time to grab your official bib (from 4pm) and front up for a welcome drink with the pros from 5-6pm. Heard the expression “keep your enemies close”?
Once the battles are won and lost on the piste, there’s a concert (talent still TBA) and then on Sunday, win, lose or draw, everyone heads to Pub Mont Fort for the prize giving ceremony at 5pm. Once the official duties are over it’s time to party with the pros at a BBQ with more DJ entertainment.
Are You Ready for the High Five?
While admittedly Verbier is one of the pricier resorts in the Alps, this is one time to put your money where your mouth is for the opportunity to do more than just rub shoulders with your celebrity sporting heroes – it’s the chance to take them on at their own game! And maybe, just maybe, even win. So, speaking of game… are you?
How to Get to Verbier
With a flight time of just 90 minutes from the UK to Geneva Airport, heading to Verbier for the High Five won’t even have you working up a sweat. With plenty of carriers offering regular flights, even during the busy ski season you’ll be able to pick up a bargain to get you there. If you’re already in Europe you may also be able to fly into Sion Airport if it’s more convenient.
The fastest and most hassle free way of getting from the airport to the resort is to prebook a transfer with Shuttle Direct. The journey to Verbier takes around two hours 15 minutes by road from Geneva and, if you advise us at the time of your online booking, any sporting equipment you bring with you will be included at no charge.
Where to Stay:
Studio A Verbier: Within easy access of multiple ski lifts, and with a free ski bus stop on the doorstep, Studio A Verbier punches way above its weight for well-priced accommodation in this ritzy resort! Everything you need is on hand, including a kitchenette, free Wi-Fi and super friendly management.
Apartment Thalia 189: Enjoy views over the slopes while you pick out your next ski challenge at Apartment Thalia 189. With a free ski bus stop outside and just 100 metres from the sports centre, everything you need for an energetic ski break is here. A kitchenette, free Wi-Fi, cable TV and spacious studio accommodation make this a comfortable home from home without losing an arm to pay for it.
Apartment Belecombs: Ski to your door and into the comfort of Apartment Belecombs, which is within easy access of several ski lifts. Along with a well-equipped kitchen, balcony, free Wi-Fi and spacious rooms, there’s an onsite sauna to get you piste-ready for the next day’s fun.
About Shuttle Direct:
With a wealth of experience in winter ski transfer services throughout Europe, Shuttle Direct is one of the most trusted names in airport transfers. With an easy-to-use online booking system and a team of friendly local drivers, we can offer competitive transfers to and from any train station or airport to suit any budget and group size.
Shuttle Direct’s experienced team will take the confusion and stress out of organising your travel arrangements, and if you advise at the time of booking we’ll even carry your ski equipment free of charge.