The Alpina Cup

  19.02.2023 Local News, Events, Le Rosey, Local News, Sports & Leisure


For the tenth time, the students, teachers and guests of the Institut Le Rosey, the Gymnasium Gstaad, and the local ice hockey club Gstaad-Saanenland competed for “The Alpina Cup”. In ice hockey, the final score was 8:5 for the mixed team of HC Gstaad-Saanenland. The fastest skis also belonged to the Gstaad team.

“The Alpina Cup is a fixed event in the agenda of Le Rosey and the Gymnasium Gstaad,” said Christoph Däpp, headmaster of the local high school, and Kim Kovacevic, Head of Academics at Le Rosey. The Alpina Cup includes a ski race on the Wasserngrat between Le Rosey, the Gymnasium Gstaad and guests, and an ice hockey match between Le Rosey and a mixed team from the Hockey Club Gstaad-Saanenland.

“Tricky gate”
The girls and boys from both schools competed in a giant slalom on the Wasserngrat for the tenth time. The snow and piste provided great conditions for an exciting race. The run was quite manageable, but it still had one key point. A red gate behind a crest became a challenge. Described by some riders as a “tricky gate”, the aim was not to drop out after this gate. The youngsters loudly commented on the unexpected change of direction.

Nevertheless, there were only very few retirements; fortunately, they were minor and injury-free. Some high school girls from Gstaad showed off their racing experience and technique in the girls’ race. Among them were Sue Piller and Chiara Lanz, who already have competed in FIS races. They were only a few tenths slower than Janis Herrmann, the winner of the boys’ race. In the girls’ race, the Gstaad girls ensured local dominance up to the ninth place.

Battle on the ice
The unifying element of the sporting competition is always in the foreground at this event. Despite the will to win, friendship and exchange between the students at both schools are desired. “The Alpina Cup is the culmination of the friendship between Le Rosey and the Gymnasium Gstaad. We put aside possible differences to do something we all love together: skiing and ice hockey. The event is a source of new friendships and respect between both parties that will stay with us for years to come,” enthuses Virgile, a student at Le Rosey.



For the tenth time, you have been the speaker at the giant slalom races and at the hockey matches; what motivates you?
First, I wanted to help my husband, Andrew Spencer, organise this event. He is one of the organisers of “The Alpina Cup”. I am a big fan of this event, and very happy to take on the role of speaker. It’s better than having to stand at the starting gate myself.

Have you ever skied yourself?
Yes, and I’ve never been so scared before. It was a family ski race in Gsteig, and I don’t really remember how I did it. I remember very well how embarrassed I was at the time with my children and that I swore I would never try that again.

What do you think “The Alpina Cup” can achieve?
As a teacher myself at Le Rosey, I think this event is a great opportunity to bring young people from different backgrounds together through sport and thus initiate an exchange and friendships. It lays the foundation for a community between the students of Le Rosey and the Gymnasium Gstaad.


And this togetherness was just as evident in the start house when cheering each other on as it was on the Gstaad ice hockey field. As the sponsor and namesake of this sporting event, The Alpina Gstaad once again provided warm drinks and a small snack at the edge of the hockey field.

Senior players battled alongside the youngsters eager to play in the hockey match, which the Gstaad team won for the eighth time. After 60 minutes of play and eight goals, the mixed team of HC Gstaad-Saanenland could cheer once more.

The local team already stress-tested the Le Rosey defence several times in the first period. And even goalie Ondrej Vokoun could do nothing about the three goals as the puck seared past him.

In the second period, the Gstaad goalie Yannik Vorderegger also had his work cut out for him, and Le Rosey finally got on the scoreboard, as he conceded the first goals, as the Le Rosey team seemed to find each other better. But further goals from the home team kept the lead constant.

In the last third, the Le Rosey players pressed increasingly into the opponent’s zone. Despite hard efforts, they did not manage to equalise, but they had five goals to their credit in the end. The match was indeed a friendly showdown with almost no penalties, no checks or animated conversations between the players of both teams.

Dinner at The Alpina Gstaad
After several years of interruption due to Covid, the successful skiing and ice hockey day ended with the award ceremony and the joint gala dinner at The Alpina Gstaad. The students, teachers, ice hockey players and guests had a great time talking to each other in many languages. Locals and Le Rosey students have connected and created friendships that will last beyond this event. Tim Weiland, General Manager of The Alpina Gstaad, and Kim Kovacevic, Head of Academics at Le Rosey, welcomed the 100 guests to the gala dinner. Weiland and Kovacevic emphasised the valuable connections between Gstaad and Le Rosey. Traditions such as “The Alpina Cup” are important, it strengthens mutual ties and must be continued at all costs. Over an exquisite dinner from the Alpina kitchen, the young people chatted animatedly and finished the evening with their own musical performances.


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