Hugo Harrison and Kästle skis are making a comeback, together.
Harrison, the Whistler-based three-time winner of the Freeskiing World Tour, is the first North American named to the inaugural Kästle Pro Team. Also on the team are Martin “McFly” Winkler (AUT), Sascha Schmid (SWI), Giulia Monego (ITA), Baptiste Blanc (FRA) and Jennifer Farde (SWE).
“Hugo personifies the new Kästle,” says Kästle Ltd. president, Siegfried Rumpfhuber. “He uses his strong racing background to ski with a smooth and powerful style — characteristics that perfectly describe our high-performance skis.”
A former professional downhill racer, Harrison burst onto the big mountain scene by winning the Freeskiing World Tour in 2000. He won the tour again in 2001 and 2002 and has racked up impressive regional wins at the Courchevel Freeride Classique and the Red Bull Snow Thrill in Alaska, among many others. He has appeared in countless ski movies, including films by Teton Gravity Research, Matchstick Productions, Poor Boyz Productions and Warren Miller.
Harrison originally hails from the shrimp-fishing town of Matane on Quebec's Gaspé Peninsula. It was there, in the remote Chic-Choc mountain range, that Harrison honed his big-mountain skills. He now lives in Pemberton.
Harrison was injured for much of the 2006-07 ski season, but he has been training intensely over the summer and plans to return to his winning form on the new Kästle MX all-mountain skis.
“I am super stoked to join the Kästle team,” states Harrison. “Kästle is a new, progressive company using its race technology and heritage to build all-mountain skis. These skis are going to help me quickly get back to the top of the freeskiing world.”
“Hugo really rounds out our team,” notes Rumpfhuber. “We’ve carefully chosen a group of accomplished athletes that are pushing the boundaries of skiing through both competitions and expeditions. More importantly, our pro team collectively shares an unmatched passion for the sport that inspires us and others to push their limits in skiing.”
Kästle was once one of the most famous ski manufacturers in Austria, but Kästle skis haven’t been seen for nearly a decade. This year, a small group of Austrian skiers, designers and entrepreneurs re-launched the Kästle ski brand with support from Cross Industries Inc., owners of KTM motorcycles. Headquartered in Wels, Austria, Kästle will manufacture a limited line of four high-performance skis for 2008. They will be available at slected North American and European retailers in late 2007.