Ski federation head Kasper to quit after 22 years

The Associated Press

OBERHOFEN AM THUNERSEE, Switzerland (AP) -- The president of the International Ski Federation, Gian Franco Kasper, will step down next year after 22 years in the job.

The 75-year-old Swiss former journalist will leave his post in May at the FIS congress, which will choose his replacement. He's spent 45 years in different roles at FIS.

Kasper has faced criticism from skiers over the last year for his stance on environmental issues and the packed competition calendar.

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He apologized in February after referring to ''so-called climate change'' in a newspaper interview and saying he would prefer to host events in dictatorships than to deal with environmental activists.

Last month, he said the Alpine ski World Cup had ''too many races'' after skiers complained of grueling travel schedules and not enough rest.

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