We just spent five days testing next year’s skis at the 2016 SIGB ski test. Here’s a little glance behind the scenes…
Every year Fall-Line staff takes a crack team of testers to Kühtai for the SIGB ski test. It’s an annual event where UK ski retailers and media work their way through the latest skis from 20 different ski brands. This year there were 836 skis to try, plus boots, helmets, goggles, footbeds and more…
Putting piste skis through their paces | Callum Jelley
For us, it’s the most important week of the ski season. The data and feedback we collect at the test is what we use to pick our annual ski of the year winners, and getting it right is crucial.
Fall-Line editor Nicola Iseard in action | Callum Jelley
This year, our ten-man test team consisted of Fall-Line staffers, industry professionals and recreational skiers, with ability levels varying from shit-hot to just-had-a-hip-replacement. The range of skiers gives us an idea of how skis perform across different skill sets.
This year’s oldest tester: The unstoppable David, 72 years old and still ripping! | Martin Chester
Each of us gets a hit list of around 15 skis to work through over the first two days of the test. The process is simple: we grab a pair of skis from our list, get the bindings adjusted to our boots, take them for a few runs and then score them across a range of criteria, such as edge hold, responsiveness and versatility.
Matt testing the new Rossi Soul 7 HD | Callum Jelley
After a couple of days of testing, we start to get an idea of what’s scoring well, so we start cross-testing key models and snapping photos of them in action.
Women’s big mountain tester Chloe getting some air | Callum Jelley
The hard part comes after the test, when we have several excel sheets-worth of data to go through as we work out our ski of the year, along with the category winners.
Ian on the latest Salomon skis | Callum Jelley
And do we know this year’s yet? One week on from the test and we’re still crunching the numbers and debating our favourites.. Watch this space!
Big mountain skier Chrigl springs into action | Callum Jelley