Give me an O, Give me a T, Give me an I…

…Oti, Oti, Oti! The fans of Otmar Striedinger came in throws and chanted their battle cry in unison wearing wooden helmets and bright-colored jackets. They were unbeatable. The Oti Fans prevailed among 24 other fan clubs and can look forward to a summer hiking day in Val Gardena/Gröden.

As in year’s past, Saturday was the day for the fans. The fan festival featuring a fan parade was enjoyed by the rest of the audience as the 25 multi-colored clubs walked through the Finish to take their places on dedicated grand stands. Equipped with banners, drums, bells and other paraphernalia, the fan clubs were marched through downtown St.Christina before making their way to the Finish from which they could focus all their attention on their sport idols as they made their way down the Saslong.

A Jury selected the most “expressive” fan club. In years past, fans of Sigmar Klotz and Dominik Paris brought home the fan club prize and again this year, hopes were high for the fan clubs of “Domme” Paris, of Christof Innerhofer and Oti Striedinger. “We will put all our efforts behind winning for a third time” said Paris’ Fan Club “Heilousn” President Dagmar Gruber already ahead of the fan club performances.

It came down to the Oti vs the Domme clubs. The winning factors for Oti’s club were the number of members - 120 of them - along with the originality of their appearance. A Val Gardena/Gröden summer hike featuring mountainous huts, traditional delicacies and good Tyrolean music along with an overnight stay will be waiting for the fans this coming summer. The “Heilousn” will be able to overcome their defeat. After all, their idol took home two podium places in this last two days. And he already made a date to share a traditional South Tyrolean breakfast with his fans on his home skiing mountain tomorrow.