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Swatch pulls back from providing services to alpine World Cup

Swatch pulls back from providing services to alpine World Cup{mosimage}Despite a FIS council vote on November 12 that established Swatch as the official provider of timing and data processing for the alpine World Cup, the Swiss timing company has stepped back from the alpine World Cup.

“Swatch after 60 years all of a sudden insisted that they have worldwide exclusivity,” said Gian Franco Kasper, president of the FIS. “We told our nations about a year ago and they agreed that we would make a global contract for alpine races only. They agreed, and then in the spring of this year Austria had an offer, apparently with some money behind it, with Siemens.”

Kasper said that now that Austria has decided to use Siemens for two World Cup weekends — Soelden and Altenmarkt — Swatch has pulled out of all of the season’s races except for a small number where the company had pre-existing contracts. Among those is the alpine world championships, which will be held at Bormio, Italy, in February.

At Tuesday and Wednesday’s women’s races in St. Moritz, Switzerland, timing and data are being supplied by Delta Tre, an Italian outfit that has worked in alpine skiing before. “We have to pay for this, is the problem,” said Kasper.

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