26.11.2023 Uncategorized

The FIS World Cup Ruka Nordic started the season with all Nordic disciplines – Real winter was brought to the world for tens of millions of TV spectators 

The event weekend included new formats, and the return to the exciting atmosphere of the World Cup opening in all Nordic disciplines was excellent. In addition, a fluoride testing system compliant with the International Ski Federation (FIS) was built for the first time. 


This year, the construction of the international event was completed faster than ever before, as the Suomen Cup (Finnish national cup in Cross Country Skiing) was held in Ruka one week before the World Cup opening. 

“We had almost everything ready one good week ahead. I am happy we were able to organize the national race at Ruka right before the World Cup”, says Matti Heikkilä, The General Secretary of Ruka Nordic and the Chairman of the local skiing club. 

At this time of the year, many European ski centers struggle with the same problem – lack of snow.  

“We stowed snow packed under the special thermal insulation cover over summer. This made it possible to have enough snow on the tracks already briskly before the Games”, Heikkilä says.  

The new competition formats, Cross-Country mass starts and Compact in Nordic Combined, worked well at Ruka. In addition, the control and testing system of the fluoride ban, which was in effect from the beginning of the season, worked flawlessly during the event. 

The event’s turnover and amount of visitors increased from the previous year. 

Ruka has served tens of millions of viewers for more than twenty years through an international TV signal. Those watching the games on-site have been offered facilities at the World Cup event and in the village of Ruka.  

The accommodation capacity and the restaurants have been packed over the weekend. The tourism income left in the area by the teams, organizations, and event guests is significant. Matti Heikkilä says he is happy to see that world-class sports fill the stadium and people enjoyed the services of the event during the three long days. 

“The event’s financial turnover grew this year. The Friday and Saturday sales revenue exceeded last year’s weekend sales. That is a big success in an unstable world situation”, he says.  

For the coming years, Heikkilä hopes to find more opportunities for collaboration with business life and Ruka Nordic to benefit the Finnish brand of the proper winter.  

“The international visibility of the event directly benefits Finland and, of course, the Ruka region. It should be harnessed for marketing use in many sectors. This year, our event also brought a large number of representatives of international companies to Ruka.  

Also, Minister of Youth, Sport and Physical Activity, and Member of Parliament Sandra Bergqvist was visiting the event.Regarding networking, discussions with decision-makers and the city and national sports umbrella organizations were necessary,” Heikkilä opens up the plans. 

Ruka Nordic will officially become an environmentally responsible event. 

When organizing events, more and more attention is paid to matters of responsibility: sustainable choices from an environmental point of view and nurturing the continuum of volunteerism. Ruka Nordic has built its long-term responsibility and ecological program and has been awarded the Eco Compass certificate. An audit examining ten different criteria of the industry-independent environmental system was carried out during the event in the competition area by an approved independent inspector. 

Ruka Nordic wants to be a sustainable and responsible event in the long-term calendars of the International Ski Federation. In 2024, Ruka Nordic will be held again in November for the 23rd time. 


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