7 / 3 / 2013
Last September, Switzerland’s smallest canton experienced its largest ever sporting event in the form of the Tug of War World Championship. The world’s best rope pullers gathered in Appenzell to contest the World Championship title. 1,300 competitors from 25 countries thrilled audiences and press alike. HUBER+SUHNER sponsored the fiber optic cables used to transmit the event live on a series of large screens.
Traditional Appelzell music flowed from the loudspeakers, cowbells rang out from the viewing stands and the athletes gave it their all in the arena: “Pull! Pull!” The atmosphere was electric: on the field, traditional rituals accompanied the competitive sport, all against the picturesque background of the village of Appenzell.
In addition to its traditional flair, the event was also characterized by an international atmosphere: an American drawl from heavyset men with crew cuts, softly spoken Mandarin from small but powerful Chinese competitors, and tall, good-natured Dutchmen with tightly tied kidney belts. These rope pullers were certainly a varied lot. The world-leading Swiss national teams were also naturally represented in various weight classes. They won two gold medals and one bronze. The teams from Ireland, South Africa, China and Sweden also experienced great success.
Material sponsoring by HUBER+SUHNER
A broadband WLAN network was set up on the sports field for transmitting the competition to a large screen. Since the telecoms company did not provide any fiber optics connections, the canton’s own lines were used. HUBER+SUHNER sponsored the temporary cables used to cover the last few metres to the network distributors. This was handled using a MASTERLINE preassembled fiber optic cable system, designed for challenging indoor and outdoor environments – perfect for the Tug of War World Championship.
Tug of war: A modern sport with a traditional character
Tug of war is a team sport that requires strength, stamina, technique and mental prowess. This fringe sport has a longstanding history. Men in ancient Egypt and Greece would test their strength with a rope, and it was later popular in the Chinese Empire. It was also a favourite sport within a number of different armies. From 1900 to 1920, it was even an official Olympic sport.