Major General Jez Bennett CBE, Director ISSSC
2021 was to see a celebration of 15 years of holding the Inter Service Snow Sports Championships (ISSSC) in the world class resort of Méribel. Alas the global COVID 19 pandemic means that we will have to wait another year before we can celebrate this.
Over the years we have been hugely supported by the Méribel Office Du Tourisme, the école de ski Français (ESF) and Méribel Alpina. Athletes, the committee and sponsors alike enjoyed the charms of Méribel. It is with much regret that we are unable to benefit from their hospitality again this year.
Last year we had a great competition. As always we faced some challenges, we moved some events to fit suitable weather windows, notably the Alpine speed races; however, through the perseverance of the local piste maintenance team and the flexibility of the athletes I am pleased to report that we achieved a full race programme. The race pistes and snow parks were as ever, superbly prepared by the local team.
As you will read in the articles from the Discipline Chairmen there were many notable team and individual performances. I will pick out a couple of themes to mention in dispatches. Firstly, Ladies Telemark; it was particularly pleasing to see an increase in Ladies representation. We’ll keep building on this and we hope to host our first Inter-Service Ladies Championships next year. Secondly, this truly is a Tri Service Championships; of the ten available Inter Service Team and Individual Combination Champion Trophies the Royal Navy led the pack with four with the Army and Royal Air Force picking up three apiece. The Inter Services Snow Sports Championships remains a fierce competition with all to play for.
With our enforced pause halting overseas activities this year the team are working up a plan to hold a small event in the UK to help bridge the “on snow” seasons. The feasibility of this will depend upon developments over the coming months; however, we remain hopeful and will push out further details in due course. So finally, in my third year as the director of the Inter Services Snow Sports Championships let me first pass on a vote of thanks to the organising committee who continue to prepare to ensure that we are back with a bang next year. Second to the athletes who sadly will not be joining us this season, keep your bodies and minds sharp, you will race again soon. Finally, to our sponsors; these are difficult times for all of us, your continued support means a lot and we remain very grateful.