Nations Cup: 2821 (7th)
Men: 2680 (4th)
Women: 141 (17th)
Moving up from the #9 spot from the 2009-2010 Nation’s Cup standings, it can be all thanks to Dario Cologna. This man can do no wrong; he has no weakness. He can sprint and he can be there at the end of a 50km. He won the World Cup Overall and Distance Cup last year and finished 12th in the Sprint Cup. Joining Cologna is Curdin Perl, Toni Livers and Remo Fischer.
Cologna (12th in ranking) is the only Swiss man that can do any damage in the sprints. His track record last year was quite impressive with three podiums in five sprints entered. Martin Jaeger is will be looking to earned regular World Cup points this year after having a phenomenal World Championships where he qualified in 3rd, but slipped to 11th at the end of the day. Above that, he only scored points in one World Cup race and that was the Rybinsk sprints where he just missed the podium and finished 4th. It should be noted he entered the Dusseldorf, Davos and Lahti sprints but failed to qualify in any of them. Christoph Eigenmann (35th in ranking) is the seasoned sprint specialist for Switzerland and had a decent outing last year amassing 66 points including an 8th place in Dusseldorf.
There is also Joeri Kindschi (57th) and Eligius Tambornino (102nd) in the sprint squad, but I wouldn’t expect many top 30 qualifications from the two this year.
The women’s team is in a state of flux with Doris Trachsel (47th), Laurien van der Graaff (56th) and Silviana Bucher (61st) making up the team. The three are all top 25 skiers, but making it past the quarter-finals will be a very difficult feat for the three this year. Bucher had an impressive 6th in the 2009-2010 season, but that result seems like a flash in the pan at this point.
Tatjana Stiffler (potentially best last name) will be looking to be introduced to the World Cup circuit this year after earning a 19th at U23’s last year.
The Swiss men have one of the stronger distance teams in the World currently. Their foursome of Cologna (1st), Perl (16th) , Fischer (43rd) and Livers (61st) are a great relay team on paper and proved so by winning the relay in La Clusaz last December. We all know how good Cologna is and in his shadows, Perl has come into his own and become a very respectable distance skier. He had a very strong finish Tour de Ski last year where he came 12th, 6th, 8th and was the 3rd fastest up the Alpe Cermis which earned him his first ever World Cup podium (even though it’s not recognized on his FIS profile).
Fischer is a freestyle specialist which limits his World Cup action, but you can expect to see him in the 15th-20th position for most races. Last season Livers had a disappointing season and will be looking to rebound and earn points in more then three World Cup races this season.
With only 27 World Cup points collected between Bucher, Boner and Traschel, it’s dire straits for the Swiss women. It appears that the team will have similar results this year too which is worrying for Swiss ski fans.
The good news for the weak women’s team is that there is some talent coming up through the ranks right now. Christina Jaeger (assumingly Martin’s little sister?) and Natalia Mueller both had a couple top 30’s at the World Juniors as did Fabian Schaad on the men’s side.
The women’s side are on route for another weak season, but this should be masked by the fact that the men look very good on both the distance and sprint fronts. If Martin Jaeger finds his form he was in for the World Championships, a Cologna-Jaeger team sprint partnership will be dangerous and could challenge for medals. With Cologna and Perl leading the men, there should be numerous top 10’s again this year and potential for team medals in the relays.