A Michel Reybier Hospitality edition

By keywords

By issue number

- Interview -

Lara Gut

Star of the snow

She is an athlete like no other. With fresh and sparkling fashion model looks, Lara Gut is not only an exceptional ski champion but also a remarkably brilliant woman. Winner of the overall ranking at the 2015-2016 World Cup and the Super G Globe in both 2014 and 2016, she has also won a bronze medal for downhill skiing at the Sotchi Olympic Games and five medals at the World Championships. This Swiss virtuoso is just as focused in her everyday life as she is on the ski runs which she flies down daily at more than 130 km/h.


Where did this passion for skiing come from?
My father raced at national level and my mother was also an accomplished skier, but it was my aunt who gave me a pair of skis very early on and I never abandoned them. Throughout my childhood, I skied with my parents, although they never pushed me to compete. In the beginning I wasn’t even part of a club. I progressed on my own. It was only at the age of 14 that I started to train more seriously. I loved the sport and I wanted to improve. It all happened totally naturally, nothing was forced.

Were you good from a very young age?
I find it ridiculous to say that a ten-year-old kid is going to have an exceptional career. That’s the kind of story that is told when an athlete has won a bunch of medals. There are loads of gifted children who will not become champions. The level they will achieve is determined at a later stage by a blend of motivation, drive and commitment. My parents raised me with the idea that my life was in my own hands and it was up to me to decide what I wanted to do. And for me, it was all perfectly logical and simple.

How much time do you have to invest in your sport?
I work virtually 50 weeks out of every 52. Generally speaking, I take part in races until the end of April, May is fairly free and after that I am involved in physical training until the end of July. I then go to South America to ski and finish preparing on glaciers in Switzerland or Austria. At the end of October, competitions start again. In my profession, no two days are alike. Even if one uses the same ski run several days in a row, the tracks are different. It’s always a new challenge.

What do you like about this sport?
The feeling of freedom. When I’m in the start gates, it’s a challenge between me and the mountain. I like improving and working on fine details to achieve perfection.

What reward are you most proud of?
One can win everything but if one isn’t happy it’s worthless. The greatest reward for me is to do what I love doing every day and my victory is to be happy both in sport and in my private life. To be at ease with myself – that is all I ask for.

Excellence is the theme of this edition. What does it mean to you?
Excellence is not just about results. I find that far too restrictive a definition. Often in sport, if you win, people think you’re great and if you lose, you’re regarded as useless. Excellence lies in the quality of the way you move and of the race.

Is fear always a factor in your races?
No, absolutely not! If you start to be afraid, you lose control and develop a mental block that can make things dangerous. It’s the same thing in life. You have to be able to understand the reasons behind your fear and get rid of the stress. On the other hand, there is plenty of adrenaline as well as incredible sensations.

You are always much loved by the public. How do you explain this popularity?
I always try to remain true to myself. At the beginning of my career, I was sometimes clumsy in the way I communicated, because I was young and I didn’t know how to manage situations. It was tough. I just wanted to ski, but there were many parallel elements that I was not in control of. These days I’m better at it. When I hear kids tell me that seeing my races makes them want to ski, I realize I absolutely have to do things right.

What would you like to do when you stop skiing?
I don’t know yet, but I want to continue skiing for a long time. I’m very interested in communication – in fact I find it fascinating. My failures in this area have indeed been so beneficial that it may be an option when the time comes for a career transition.

Based on an interview by par Anouk Julien-Blanco



© N. Castelli – Paranoiko

© A. Trovati - Phentaphoto

© A. Trovati - Phentaphoto

© A. Trovati - Phentaphoto

© Y. Bachmann

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedIn

Related articles

Peak energy

Facing a stunning 180° view of Alpine peaks, one naturally feels a surge of fresh energy.

Local menu

The Victoria-Jungfrau Grand Hotel & Spa owed it to itself to offer guests a local menu.

Life is beautiful

The Bellevue Palace has dreamed up an exclusively feminine offer.

Your vineyard

For as long as your stay in this family home lasts, you’ll be master of the house…