Skier Reto Schmidiger is fighting for his place in the ski circus and is currently gaining a variety of experiences.
In the summer he swaps the pole forest for horticulture; in both places the precision work is a matter of millimeters. This has been Reto Schmidiger’s new everyday life since he lost his membership in a Swiss Ski squad a good year and a half ago.
The 31-year-old has to organize his fitness training around the work in construction, which generates the necessary financial support. “During the day I do physically demanding work. I’m often happy when I’ve already completed my training in the morning,” says Schmidiger.
Once on par with Pinturault
10 years ago his name was still closely associated with the attributes of super talent, hope for the future and diamond in the rough. As a junior, Schmidiger became world champion three times, racing against Alexis Pinturault and Justin Murisier.
He also quickly found his footing in the World Cup and was ranked in the top 10 early on. But then the (resultant) crash followed. While his competitors from the past are now overall World Cup winners and podium finishers, Schmidiger, without squad status, is fighting not to disappear from the ski scene.
In his own cellar in Hergiswil, the man from Nidwalden prepares his almost 20 pairs of skis for the new season. But he hasn’t just become his own service man: “With the organization and preparations, many other things have been added.”
Already conquered the “super slalom”.
In addition to the European Cup, Schmidiger also made a detour to the American World Pro Ski Tour last winter. “Slalom movements in giant slalom gates, and then man against man, that has always fascinated me,” he enthuses.
Far away from the big World Cup stage, the slalom specialist (typically American) is crowned world champion in the parallel super slalom. Not only does it sound nice, but it also provided financial support with $25,000. “I’m very happy about this kind of prize money.”
Now he wants to attack again in the upcoming season and make a name for himself in training and in the European Cup. If Schmidiger succeeds in his comeback, he will have laid the foundation for successful snow days in gardening, among other things.