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Salomon Founder, Georges Salomon Passes Away

What sort of equipment would Nordic skiers be skiing on if it wasn't for the revolutionary Salomon Nordic System? (Photo Credit: Salomon)

Georges Salomon, the founder of Salomon passed away one week ago today, October 6, 2010. He passed peacefully in his home near Lake Annecy, France.

In 1946, when Georges was 25 years old, he and his father opened a workshop at Côte-Saint-Maurice in Annecy, France. The following year, they started supplying ski manufacturers with ski edges for the rapidly expanding European ski market. After taking some engineering night school classes, he designed a machine to produce ski edges (metal edges for Alpine skis). His father didn't see the need to expand and invest in such machinery, so Georges took over the company at that point.

Georges Salomon holding Salomon's first ski, the S9000. (Photo Credit: Salomon)

Since then, Georges and Salomon have been an industry leader with one innovation after another. Likely Georges' most famous creation, the releasing safety binding is said to have saved the ligaments of hundreds of thousands of skiers. These Alpine safety bindings were first released in the 1966 as the Allais and Skade models for the Olympic games in Portillo, Chile. In the late 1979, Salomon started making Alpine boots, which was an immediate success.

The Salomon Profil SNS boot binding combo completely revolutionized Nordic skiing. (Photo Credit: Salomon)

Finally for us Nordic skiers, during the 1979 - 1980 winter, Salomon introduced the Salomon Nordic System (SNS), including the boot and binding that many have since come to know as the "D Pin" system (due to the fact that the metal loop at the front of the boot is shaped like an upper case "D"). Next, came the SNS Profil Binding System, which was released in 1989. Next came the SNS Pilot System in 1998, released in time for the Nagano Olympic Games. Most recently, Salomon has gotten into the Nordic ski market, with the first skis hitting store racks during the fall of 2006.

Snow Sports lost a pioneer last week in Georges Salomon. Whether you enjoy skinny skis or big fatties, he has made a major impact on your enjoyment of the sport.

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