- Title: AUSTRIA: Skiers play alpine golf round on the ski slopes
- Date: 23rd June 2007
- Summary: COWS IN FIELD
- Embargoed: 9th July 2007 18:59
- Location: Austria
- Country: Austria
- Topics: Sport
- Reuters ID: LVA5JXJ7Z638V39WR1CHZYDYNYMV
- Aspect Ratio: 4:3
- Story Text: Sports enthusiasts from several countries play golf on the infamous "Hahnenkamm" ski slope in Austria.
The "Streif Attack" tournament, named after the Streif descent, attracted ski aces to the course near Kitzbuehel on Friday (June 22). Among them was Bode Miller from the United States who usually races down the mountain on skis, not in sneakers and shorts.
The passionate golf player and four-time downhill ski world champion said: "It's on a very large scale, this whole hill, the drops, especially when you're trying to hit a golf ball, it's really hard to judge."
The Hahnenkamm golf course measures 3.1 kilometres and covers nine holes. It is built on the lower slopes of the Hahnenkamm mountain which is used every January for the Hahnenkammrennen downhill race, and which features in alpine World Cup races.
As none of the course is level, the players tee off from built platforms. Instead of bunkers and water traps they have steep slopes, a large lake and alpine meadows of long grass where a lost ball is probable rather than possible. The one good thing for the golfer is that putting is easy as the holes are huge.
Michael Huber was taking part in the tournament on Friday. During the winter he is Hahnenkamm race director. He said: "It's certainly being considered to turn this into a golf course because a conventional golf course is not exactly a world attraction. But to turn this into a permanent golf course would obviously be a world sensation."
A round of golf at the course can be tiring. Golf players have to overcome a difference in elevation of 1,000 metres.
Swedish skier Johann Redenius conceded it was "definitely a crazy thing and doesn't have a lot to do with playing golf."
"But it's something hip and fun to watch for people. It's a team competition and it's fun!"
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