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  • Writer's pictureRaúl Revuelta

Helly Hansen New Clothing Partner to Alpine Ski Team Norway

Updated: Nov 5, 2022

Norway Alpine Ski Team, Sölden 2022. Picture: Ski Paradise

The Norwegian Alpine Ski Team’s collaboration with Helly Hansen as a new clothing supplier was presented in Sölden last Thursday 20 October. The agreement between the Norwegian Ski Association and Helly Hansen has a duration of eight years, making Helly Hansen the alpine team's Official Partner and supplier of clothing and other equipment.

Founded in Norway in 1877, Helly Hansen is a leader in technical sailing and performance ski apparel, as well as premium workwear. Its uniforms are worn and trusted by more than 55,000 professionals and can be found on Olympians, National Teams, and at more than 200 ski resorts and mountain guiding operations globally.

The company has developed a long list of first-to-market innovations, including the first supple waterproof fabrics more than 140 years ago.

Professional skiers all over the world wear and trust Helly Hansen, and the partnership with the Norwegian Alpine Ski Team is a natural strategic choice. As a leader in technical ski apparel, Helly Hansen focuses on developing performance-driven gear to give athletes advantages in training and competition.

Presentation Helly Hansen. Picture: Ski Paradise

As a Norwegian brand, Helly Hansen has achieved impressive results through its competence, culture and history. The company's objectives are ambitious and in line with those we have in alpine skiing, and both parties have a broad, global field of impact. We look forward to working together as a team to achieve our common goals. Through innovation and competence, we believe the Norwegian athletes will gain an extra competitive advantage with their new clothing”, said sports manager of the Norwegian Ski Association Alpine, Claus Johan Ryste.

"Skiing is part of Helly Hansen's DNA, and this partnership is both an example of our enthusiasm for ski racing and our belief in investing long-term in the ski category. By entering into a partnership with one of the world's leading alpine national teams, we will work together to create innovative, performance-driven products and strengthen our global presence in skiing”, said Category Managing Director for Ski at Helly Hansen, Philip Tavell.

"For me, to be part of the Attacking Vikings is such an honor, to be able to represent the culture and set examples for the younger generations to come. It’s incredible", said the "leader" of the Men's A Team Aleksander Aamodt Kilde.

Traveling with the team year-round forms a deep connection between teammates and coaches. “They sort of become your second family. You share the same passions and goals, creating an equal understanding that is not found anywhere else. Being part of a group with the same mentality provides an opportunity to be the best in the world at what you’re doing. Training and racing on the mountain can be tough and tiring; it can be overwhelming. But together, we push through as a team”, Kilde says.

Clothing must be adapted, and design plays an important role in performing at the top level of alpine skiing. We place a lot of trust in Helly Hansen and their designers, and at the same time provide concrete input on design during the product development process. We believe that Helly Hansen can give us a competitive advantage, and we look forward to seeing the results of the collaboration this season”, said Ragnhild Mowinckel, one of five athletes on the Women's A team in the 2022-2023 season.

The skiers who attended the presentation were: Henrik Kristoffersen, Lucas Braathen, Atle Lie McGrath, Aleks Aamondt Kilde, Rasmus Windingstad, Fabian W Solheim, Sander, Leif Haugen, Timon Haugan, Ragnhild Mowinkel, Maria Tviberg, Mina Furst Holtman, Thea Stjernesund , Kristin Lysdal, and Marte Monsen.

Ski Paradise had the opportunity to interview four of the members of the Alpine Ski Team Norway at the event. Below you can find the full interviews.

Ragnhild Mowinckel. Picture: Ski Paradise

Ragnhil Mowinckel Interview

Ski Paradise: Ragnhild, Last year you ended the season very well. Super. What's your main goal for this season, the World Cup or the World Championships in Courchevel-Meribel?

Ragnhil Mowinckel: For me, it always starts with the World Cup because that's the first thing you meet. And for sure you want to have a good World Cup because that also kind of leads into the World championships. But as you said, I ended the last season pretty well. And for sure, one of my goals this year is to try to be consistent. I had a good, good increase and how I was doing during the last season. So for sure, it's going to be hard staying there because that's the challenge. But I feel like if I have a chance of coloring each race that I started and being a part of that group, then I'm happy.

SP: Okay, and in the World Cup, your goal is one of the of the small globes or you're looking for a good rank in the overall standings?

RM: For sure it's always a goal to improve and last year I did well so that means for sure you want to raise the bar a bit more. I feel like for me, if I have a good process of becoming better, then the results will be affected by that. So, I care about the process the first and then I think about the results after it. But it's for sure something, as you said, you want to improve, and you want to be better. And last year I got as close as you can without the globe. So, we will try.

SP: Right now in which disciplines do you feel stronger?

RM: I think also last year I took a couple of extra steps in the speed disciplines and for sure how I ended in the Super-G was good. I also feel like I improved a lot in the Downhill and I still got a job to do in Giant Slalom. But I think I'm stronger in the speed disciplines at the moment.

SP: And what about Sölden? It was difficult for you here in previous seasons.

RM: Sölden has never been really a favorite of mine. It always comes really fast every year. And you say this every year also because it is coming fast, but this year at least we have it's a more continuation of the season beginning in Cervinia so the pressure of that changes a bit how you trained, meaning I did more speed training this season than I did before. So, we'll see about the GS for if it's somehow okay, I'm happy. But my main goal is the rest of the season.

Olympic Winter Games Podiums:

World Championships Podiums:

FIS World Cup Starts: 193

FIS World Cup Podiums: 9

FIS World Cup Victories: 2

World Cup Standings

First World Cup Start: Zagreb SL 03.01.2012

First WC Points: St. Moritz Super Combined 7.12.2012

First WC Podium: Val d'Isère Super-G 16.12.2017

First WC Victory: OfterSchwang Giant Slalom 09.03.2018

Mowinckel suffered a serious ACL injury in March 2019 and another the following autumn; these injuries forced her to sit out the entire 2019-20 season. She made her return to the World Cup in the 2020-21 season and has since made steady progress back towards the top. The 30-year-old Norwegian reached her first podium since 2019 when she placed second in the Super-G in Val d'Isère in December 2021.

Last season WC Top 10 including 3 podiums (1 - 2- 0)

Ragnhild Mowinckel won the last Super-G in Courchevel. The Norwegian edged Mikaela Shiffrin by a mere +0.05 seconds. Michelle Gisin finished in third place +0.13 seconds behind Mowinckel.

The 30-year-old put down a clean run on the new Eclipse course to earn her second victory and her 9th podium in the World Cup. Mowinckel already stood at the top of a World Cup podium once before, in the 2018 Giant Slalom in Ofterschwang.

She claimed one super-G podium finish this World Cup season, a second place in Val d'Isère on 19 December. She joins Merete Fjeldavlie (Vail, 1992) and Ingeborg Helen Marken (Kvitfjell, 1996) as the only Norwegians to win a Super-G in the women's World Cup.

Atle Lie McGrath, Sölden 2022. Picture: Ski Paradise

Atle Lie McGrath Interview

Ski Paradise: Hi Atle, what is your main goal for the season? Are you going to compete also on the speed disciplines, are you going to try to race in Super-G?

Atle Lie McGrath: I'm going to try. I hope they get my World Cup debut in the Super-G this year. That'll be fun. I don't have the biggest expectations necessarily because I think I'm a good enough speed skier, but the level of world of speed is super difficult. The hills are scary. It's icy. The people who ski it are so good. So, I can't expect to go in there and try to do well. But my focus this year is to kind of keep going a little bit what I did last year. After the Olympics last year, I had DNF too much and ski out a lot. And I told myself, just from now on, I'm just going to finish every World Cup race and take points in every race. And I did. And you know, I had six top tenths and two wins in the last four races. So, and the thing that did to me was, I just tore my shoulders lower, I had more fun with skiing. And that's my goal this year. Like don't take it too seriously, like ski as good as I can, but really be on. But, you know, come on, I'm skiing in front of many thousand, I get to ski in front of them. So why not try to have fun to put on the show?

SP: Okay. Because in the long run you are an all-arounder skier. You prove it on the Junior World Championships in 2018 and 2019. You raced all the events (DH, SG, AC, GS, and SL) both years. In 2018, you were the best U18 skier in three events and in 2019, you won a silver medal in the Combined. You also were fourth in the Downhill and miss the medal by a mere 0.01 second.

ALM: I think maybe in like 2030, I'll be a full time Downhill skier. We'll see… But for sure. I'm doing speed. But I think, Kjetil Jansrud said it well last year, so Atle you're just a little bit too good in Slalom to be doing speed. So, if you were a little worse at slalom, he meant I could be a speed skier. I'm going to keep skiing Slalom and GS for a long time, but I for sure want to ski Downhill and Super-G.

SP: You did well last season. You ended perfectly in the Finals at Courchevel-Meribel. A first place in the Slalom and an eight place in Giant Slalom. All your team, the Attacking Vikings, looks amazing for the next championships because you top all the races at the Finals in each discipline, so, it is looking good for you.

ALM: Absolutely it's not a coincidence because we push each other so hard every training. It's like one day someone who ski really well and others can't ski so well. And then, like, you always see where the level is, and you push each other. And the fact that, you know, we also train together all summer long. The whole Team, you have to be there. And that makes that we become really good friends.

SP: So everyone looks at you, everyone looks at your team and your perfomance as a team.

ALM: There always have been idols who have carried the culture further. So, you have Kjus, Aksel, and Kjetil and you see them, and you know, maybe, hopefully I can be one of those people who can bring the culture to the younger kids when I get a bit older. So, you know, it's not a coincidence. And this is this is something that has been working for a long time. And it's not perfect. We always have our issues, but we work through it together and we do like we do our best with what we have. And I think that's what's good, like doing the best with the resources of the people we have.

SP: And it looks like you always come in pairs. And right now, it’s you and Lucas.

ALM: Yeah, Yeah, I know. Maybe. Maybe Lucas and I can be two people who will bring the culture forward. But one thing that's for sure is that Lucas and I, we ski so much together, and we're good friends, and we have a really good balance in what we do. So, I think hopefully we're just going to keep on doing what we do and push each other and then it can be really fun.

SP: And how you feel about Sölden and the start of the season because it's not your cup of tea.

ALM: Yeah, I would say it's not necessarily Sölden, but it's just more like it’s the first race, if it was somewhere else, I think it would be the same. It's fun, but it's a lot of pressure. So, I would say that this year I feel my goal is to finish the race. I've never made it to the second run. So, my goal is to be on the second run and then take it from there. If I could make it to the finish, see where I'm at, and then I can adjust. I think in general, I'm hoping that I can show a good skiing and that I'll have fun.

FIS World Cup Starts: 35

FIS World Cup Podiums: 5

FIS World Cup Victories: 2

World Cup Standings

First World Cup Start: Adelboden GS 12.01.2019

First WC Points: Alta Badia Parallel Giant Slalom 23.12.2019

First WC Podium: Alta Badia GS 20.12.2020

First WC Victory: Flachau Slalom 09.03.2022

Last season WC Top 10 including 4 podiums (2 - 1 - 1)

After his second place in Alta Badia he suffered and ending season injury in the first run in Adelboden in January 2021.

In March 2022 Atle Lie McGrath claimed his first World Cup victory in Flachau. The Norwegian finished 0.29 seconds ahead of Clement Noel and 0.64 ahead of Swiss Daniel Yule.

Previous to Flachau the 21-year-old skier had achieved three World Cup podiums, a second place in the Slalom in Schladming in January, a third place in the Parallel in Lech-Zürs in November, and a second place in the Giant Slalom in Alta Badia in 2020.

A few days after Atle Lie McGrath Wins Last Race of the Season and claimed his second World Cup victory in Meribel. The Norwegian finished 0.37 seconds ahead of teammate Henrik Kristoffersen and 0.77 ahead of Austrian Manuel Feller.

Lucas Braathen, Sölden 2022. Picture: Ski Paradise

Lucas Braathen Interview

Ski Paradise: Last season ended really well for you in Courchevel Meribel. What are your expectations right now for the season, what are your main goals?

Lucas Braathen: I think that our preparation has been good. I'm happy that we got to go to New Zealand again and not have like a full year pre-season, so I'm hoping that can reflect on the leaderboards coming up this season. And I just, you know, the big goal is to have consecutive good results in the technical disciplines back to back regular top fives. This is my goal and then maybe I'll put some longer skis on.

SP: That's the next question. Are you going to try Super-G this season?

LB: May happen. It may happen.

SP: Sölden is a very special place for you. In 2020 you claim here your first-ever World Cup win and podium. And you are still the youngest winner ever in the Rettenbach glacier. How do you feel now?

LB: It's been a successful venue for me, and I hope to maintain those positions that I've been able to accomplish before. But it doesn't really matter. You know, it's a new year, it's new factors, it's a new me, a new race. And I just hope to build on all the experiences I've had and set myself up for increased possibility of good results. But you can never stress it enough. It's blank sheets.

SP: You are the strongest team right now. It's looking really good for this season, especially with Courchevel Meribel in mind. If you look at the final standings and your performance in the finals, the male team did really well. So what's so special about Norway as a team?

LB: It's a culture that's integrated you know, where no one is bigger than the team themselves, but we're just as important for each other. You know, it's this one guy is achieving success. It's his world. And it's his task to teach everyone that is yet to achieve their success, to tell them how he was able to do it. And it's sort of like almost feels a bit like cheating, you know, because like, you're climbing the ladder together and you're instead of having to learn all your lessons from your own experiences, you can sort of learn from others experiences. So, it's just collectively we're just climbing up the ladder a bit faster than if you were to do it on your own.

SP: Last question. What made you when you were younger choose alpine skiing as your sport?

LB: I mean, I was introduced to sports because of brand campaigns and fantastic role models that had a unique story to tell and show their unique path to their success. That stands out. But I was introduced to football, you know, like football was my prized possession. Skiing ended up being what I really wanted to do because of all the traveling and all the friends that you were able to make and all the new cultures and landscapes that I was able to experience. You know, we traveled the most beautiful places on earth. So, when I was able to do that and I was like, Yeah, this is probably what I want to do with this experience as much as possible throughout my career as a skier. And that's what's so cool with skiing. It's unique in that way.

FIS World Cup Starts: 49

FIS World Cup Podiums: 5

FIS World Cup Victories: 2

World Cup Standings

First World Cup Start: Val d’Isere GS 08.12.2018

First WC Points: Val d’Isere GS 08.12.2018

First WC Podium: Sölden GS 18.10.2020

First WC Victory: Sölden GS 18.10.2020

Last season WC Top 10 including 4 podiums (1 - 3 - 0)

In 2020 sensation Lucas Braathen stole the show at the Audi FIS World Cup 2020-2021 opening race in Soelden as he edged Swiss Marco Odermatt (SUI) by 0.06 seconds to claim his first-ever World Cup win and podium. He is also the youngest winner in Sölden ever.

After his serious fall in the Giant Slalom in Adelboden the 2020-2020 World Cup season was over for Lucas Braathen.

Last season, in January 2022 Lucas Braathen surprised everyone on a sunny and warm beautiful day in Wengen. The 21-year-old Norwegian, who was 29th in the first run, made up 28 positions overcoming a 2.04 seconds deficit and thus clinched victory after a dream second run taking advantage of the degrading conditions of the Männlichen racecourse and a challenging setting by Norwegian Trainer Johnny Davidson.

It's his first win and podium in the discipline. One week later Lucas Braathen achieved his second Slalom Podium in Kitzbühel.

In the last Giant Slalom of the season at the Finals in Courchevel Meribel Lucas Braathen finished in second place just 0.49 seconds behind the absolute dominator of the discipline Marco Odermatt.

Marcel Hirscher and Henrik Kristoffersen. Van Deer. Picture: Michael Werlberger / Red Bull Content Pool

Henrik Kristoffersen

Henrik Kristoffersen Interview

Ski Paradise: Last season you won your third Crystal Globe in Slalom, you finished in second place in the Giant Slalom standings, and in the overall you were so close also finishing in third place. So, what’s your goal for this season?

Henrik Kristoffersen: I think the possibilities are bigger this year than what it's ever been. That's for sure. Everything is working great with the material. And yeah, of course, you never have any guarantee that everything is going to work out. You don't have that in any sports, but the possibilities are way bigger than what it's been previously. That's for sure.

SP: Sölden was never your place.

HK: It was never my favorite. Not so far.

SP: But you feel stronger this season. I read in Blick, your Swiss coach Jörg Roten said you are skiing better than a year ago. And Austria's ski expert Hans Knausshat said you will be a second faster with the Hirschers at your side.

HK: We'll see. I think the possibilities are for sure there on Sunday. Of course, we have to do two good runs and ski good if we want to be on the podium and win the race. But I'm 100% certain that during the season we will win races. We will be there to fight for the podiums and for the wins. And because everyone says that, yes, new skis, new material, everything. But think about all the people that work there. Think about Marcel and his father, with Edi his old service man, with Rafi, my new service man. It's like they have so much experience and they know so much that it's going to work out.

SP: And what's so special about Sölden? Because I think it's the pressure, is the first race of the season and everything. But you are a skier, used to deal with pressure since you won the bronze medal in slalom at Rosa Khutor at age 19 to become the youngest male medalist in Olympic alpine skiing history.

HK: And I think I deal pretty good with the pressure for sure. So there's always something special because it's a glacier, a special hill with the long pitch, special snow, because is glacier snow, and comes very early. The next race is 10th of December. So if you do good in Sölden, great, If you do bad, you have a lot of time for the next race. But I think, like I said, I think the possibilities this year are bigger than what it's been in the past. And but also you never have any guarantee. It's just all of this.

SP: And I think competition makes you better. When you were competing with Marcel, it made you stronger. Right now, he is at your side and in some way that is going to push you further.

HK: Yeah possibly. Think maybe he will push me some GS training in November. December maybe. But I think anyways, if Marcel is there or not on the Hill or whatever, I still have to do my job. I still have to focus on what I can change and what I can do my best at. That's how we got to do it. We have to try to do something about the things we can do something with and the things we can change. We can change.

SP: And one last question about Courchevel-Meribel.

HK: It’s too early to ask questions. The only thing is if you want to be in shape, you have to do good in the World Cup races leading up to the world champs. That's the best way to get in shape.

SP: Yeah, it's like in football. You need to go…

HK: Match by Match

Olympic Winter Games Podiums:

World Championships Podiums:

FIS World Cup Starts: 190

FIS World Cup Podiums: 72

FIS World Cup Victories: 28

World Cup Standings

First World Cup Start: Kranjska Gora SL 11.03.2012

First WC Points: Levi SL 11.11.2012

First WC Podium: Levi SL 17.11.2013

First WC Victory: Schladming SL 28.01.2014

Last season WC Top 10 including 4 podiums (1 - 3 - 0)

Henrik Kristoffersen finished in the top three of the overall standings six times (second in 2016, third in 2017, second in 2018, third in 2019, third in 2020, and third again in 2022).

The Norwegian has won the Slalom Crystal Globe three times (2016, 2020, and 2022). In 2020 he was six points ahead of Alexis Pinturault of France when the final two Giant Slaloms of the season, including the finale scheduled for Cortina d'Ampezzo, were cancelled by the COVID-19 pandemic. The cancellations gave the season title in Giant Slalom (as well as the title in Slalom over Clément Noël by two points) to Kristoffersen.

Last season, Henrik Kristoffersen (3) was the only other man apart from Marco Odermatt (4) to win a World Cup Giant Slalom event last winter. The Norwegian won in Alta Badia on 19 December and both races in Kranjska Gora. It was Kristoffersen's 7th World Cup victory in Giant slalom and his 24th podium in the discipline.

In the last race of the 2021-2022 season Atle Lie McGrath claimed his second World Cup victory in Meribel. The Norwegian finished 0.37 seconds ahead of teammate Henrik Kristoffersen but the second place was enough for him to grab his third Slalom Crystal Globe. He is the seventh man to win the Slalom Crystal Globe more than twice.


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