Outstanding winter conditions throughout Scandinavia, Central Europe and North America, combined with a positive perception of the Madshus brand made for a year with incredible demand for Madshus products. Madshus products were so popular that for a period in the early season, many of the Madshus products were sold out, particularly in the high-end segment including racing skis, top end boots and racing poles. So far, 2011 seems to follow the trend of 2010, which was a great year for sales.
At the 2011 ISPO trade fair in January, Madshus presented several new and improved products. For starters, the completely redesigned Madshus pole line features increased shaft stiffness, new straps and redesigned handles, as well as new baskets for the entire lineup. The new Madshus Race Performance boot series was also launched at the 2011 ISPO. The changes in our ski boot composition and design makes Madshus the only Nordic ski boot manufacturer in the world to offer a ski boot line that is made entirely without the use of PVC.
The Team Madshus racing program is also wrapping up another successful season. Between the cross-country, Nordic combined and biathlon World Cups, Madshus skiers have racked up more than 200 podium finishes this season using Madshus equipment (skis, boots and poles). We particularly want to highlight Norwegian biathlete Emil Hegle Svendsen, who earned eight individual World Cup victories, , including the 2011 World Championships in Khanty-Mansyisk (RUS) where he won two gold medals (15km mass start, relay) and a silver medal (pursuit). Furthermore, the Madshus Marathon Team completely dominated the 2011 FIS Ski Classics series and marathon cup events, with Madshus owning the podium in both the 2011 Vasaloppet in Sweden on March 6, and at the 2011 Birkebeinerrennet in Norway two weeks later. On top of that, Madshus marathon racer Jerry Ahrlin (SWE) put the icing on the cake by winning the overall FIS Marathon Cup, as well as the Marcialonga race in Italy. Fellow Madshus marathon team racer Stanislav Rezac (CZE) was third overall in the 2011 FIS Marathon Cup after winning the 2011 Birkebeiner in Norway.
At Madshus, we are committed to our customers and emphasize being present where they are. In addition to signing a 3-year contract with the Norwegian Birkebeinerrennet as their exclusive equipment supplier, the success of the Madshus Marathon Team has contributed to increase the demand for Madshus products and raise awareness of the brand.
As we sum up the 2011 season, we would also like to mention the strong class of young racers. Many of them are just finishing their first World Cup season, have delivered impressive results and experienced their international breakthroughs. Young, talented skiers such as Pål Golberg (NOR), Heidi Weng (NOR), Ingvild Flugstad Østberg (NOR), Hanna Brodin (SWE) and Noah Hoffman (USA) are all racers we expect to see a lot more of on the World Cup circuit for years to come. We are excited to have them on Team Madshus!
Finally, the “Rookie of the Year” award decidedly goes to the young Finnish cross-country skier Krista Lähteenmäki. After a fantastic first World Cup season and representing Finland at the 2011 World Championships in Oslo, the 20-year-old has delivered one of the strongest rookie seasons ever in Nordic skiing – and we predict there is more to follow in the future!
Again, we would like to thank all of the Team Madshus athletes for yet another fantastic season. We wish them all a great summer and good luck in preparing for the next season.
Madshus Marketing Manager