Preparation for take-off

«There is not much time to think»



Both know it well, the moment when they take off and fly: Niels Hintermann on his skis during the legendary jump at Hundschopf and Alex Borer in the cockpit of his aircraft on the runway. The Swiss ski racer and the SWISS pilot tell us how they prepare for take-off.


«The preparation actually starts the day before: the suitcases are packed and a first look at the weather is taken. The planning for the departure then starts on the day itself. We receive an electronic 'package' with the most important data on the airports, the weather, the weight of the aircraft and the number of passengers on board. Based on this information, we make the flight preparations and decide, for example, how many tonnes of fuel we want to order. The most important thing for me is talking to my First Officer. It may be that you have flown with this person several times before, but it may also be someone completely new. If the latter is the case, then it is important for me to get to know the person first and only then talk about the theoretical part.»

«For the take-off in your sense, i.e. the jump at the Hundschopf, there is no special preparation needed. It's a simple jump. A very nice one, but an easy one. Before that, there are two big curves that slow down the speed when you're skiing. Actually, you just have to make sure that you get around these curves. After that, you're already heading for the jump. It's a lot of stress, there's not much time to think. For the race itself, we need quite a bit of preparation time with warming up, going through the run, visualising, visiting the track and much more. Every race is a bit different, so I adjust the preparations depending on how I feel and what I need at that moment.»