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Planica, the Snow Queen

After Planica hosted the biggest winter sport event in the history of Slovenia, the Nordic World Ski Championships, at the end of February, the 44th season of the Ski Jumping World Cup will wrap up in Planica this weekend. The organisers are counting on a packed valley under the Ponce Mountains for the finals.

Planica hosted its first World Cup competition in March 1980 | Author STO

The event in the valley under the Ponce Mountains started on Wednesday with the official test of the Gorišek Brothers Flying Hill. The qualifying round is scheduled for Thursday and the last three competitions of the season are scheduled for Friday to Sunday. Currently, 72 competitors from 16 teams are registered for the season finale. The organisers promise a rich accompanying programme with music bands.

This year, the event in Planica will take place without the pioneer of the ski flying hill. Janez Gorišek, a Slovenian civil engineer, former ski jumper and sportsman, and a legend of Planica, died a few days ago at the age of 90. Gorišek, together with his older brother Vlado Gorišek, designed the ski flying hill in Planica, which helped the brothers to establish a new skiing discipline – ski flying. In 1971, it was also recognised by the International Ski Federation and the ski flying hill brought Planica’s reputation to the world.