FILE UNDER -- Alpine

Greg Johnson selected as first American FIS technical delegate for Kitzbuehel

Greg Johnson selected as first American FIS technical delegate for KitzbuehelGreg Johnson will serve as the FIS technical delegate at the World Cup speed races in Kitzbuehel, Austria, this January.

The posting marks the first time an American has been chosen as the highest-ranking race official at the world’s biggest alpine ski race.

Johnson, for many years the chief of course at the Birds of Prey downhill in Beaver Creek, Colorado, will travel to Kitzbuehel in January to oversee safety and race operations at the legendary venue.

‘To be named the TD of Kitzbuehel is an honor for anyone and it’s a testament to Greg’s great abilities and reputation within the industry’ said Ceil Folz, president of the Vail Valley Foundation, which hosts the Birds of Prey races.

Tom Winters, an American FIS TD, has served in that role at Schladming, Austria, another high-profile race.

Harold Schonhaar, a former alpine director for the U.S. Ski Team, was a FIS TD at Kitzbuehel, but Schonaar was a German citizen.

Last year races at Kitzbuehel saw the downhill canceled on account of heavy snow.

One of the most dangerous on the World Cup circuit, Kitzbuehel’s downhill draws up to 50,000 spectators.

‘[Johnson] has experience building courses, and knows how to prepare a course to make it race-ready’ said FIS race director Guenter Hujara in a telephone interview.

‘He brings everything you need for top technical delegate, and to have him in Kitzbuehel is for me quite normal and very easy.’

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