Because access to the first ski flying world cup of the season was only possible by car, bus and on foot. Due to an unrestricted level crossing directly in front of the ski jump, according to the ÖBB infrastructure law, no trains were allowed to run in the vicinity due to a lack of safety. “The new access should come, thanks to the state of Styria and the ÖBB, we are working with full vigor to ensure that this is realized by the World Cup,” said Prüller to the APA. Then “fan trains” up to the ski jump are possible again.
The new level crossing will solve many problems in the traffic concept. This is also why Prüller was “very satisfied” with the number of spectators, and in general it was “a perfect dress rehearsal for the World Cup”. “The atmosphere on Saturday was sensational, and the athletes say so too. It doesn’t matter if there are a few thousand more fans or not. An event should have quality and not quantity. And a certain charisma.”
Kraft is looking forward to the “mega ski flying party”
Stefan Kraft is also looking forward to the home World Cup. “It will definitely be another mega ski flying party, so you have to congratulate the organizers,” said the world record holder. His world record of 253.5 m will most likely not be broken on the Kulm. The hill record of 244 m held by the Slovenian Peter Prevc also this year.
Theoretically it is possible, said Prüller, but “in practice we can assume that the hill is currently built, that it is not possible”. As long as there are no changes from the International Ski Federation (FIS), no new world record will be set on the Kulm.
Hoping for an Austrian moment of glory
Next January, the title fights will take place in the Salzkammergut for the sixth time after 1975, 1986, 1996, 2006 and 2016. Two years earlier than planned because the ski flying hill in Harrachov in the Czech Republic does not have a FIS certificate for hosting competitions.
The organizers and the ÖSV are hoping for another Austrian moment of glory on the Kulm. Like in 1986, when Andreas Felder became ski flying world champion with a world record of 191 m, and ten years later, when Andreas Goldberger delighted the Austrian fans with his first world championship title.
Regular World Cup events as a goal
After the World Cup next year, the Kulm should appear even more regularly on the World Cup calendar, most recently there was a three-year break due to a rotation between the flight organizers. With the major event, the ÖSV aims to improve the infrastructural conditions on site so that the event can be held “at least three times in an Olympic cycle” within four years, as Managing Director Christian Scherer recently emphasized. In this way, the “necessary continuity” that is intended to serve the development of the event can be guaranteed.
Prüller is also optimistic. “I’m very confident about that. There have already been a lot of talks with the FIS,” said the head of the organizing committee on the Kulm, who took over the role from Hupert Neuper in 2019. “Maybe it will be our turn again in 2026. We are very positive about bringing this together.”