Celebrating 125 years of lunacy

Earlier this week, Esquire enjoyed the hospitality of the Swiss Embassy. We mingled, we accepted a refreshing beverage or two and wondered (silently) where the pyramid of Ferrero Rocher chocolates had got to. The primary reason for our visit, however, was to meet the engaging eccentrics who operate the fabled Cresta Run.

The Cresta Run, as you will know, is a bob sleigh track built by a British team headed by Major Bulpetts in 1885. It is open for three months each year, from December to early March, and plays host to a number of adventure tourists, professional sporting events and oddball runs, including fancy dress and themed trips. 

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The 3,978 ft long run, overlooking the glacial foothills of the St Moritz resort in Switzerland, is next year celebrating its 125th year of record-breaking adrenaline rides. 

Since its inception, the run has become a target for British visitors wanting to enjoy the Swiss skyline and submerge themselves in the thriving ex-pat community that the resort is renowned for. People of all sporting abilities can turn up and take part. 

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Count Luca Marenzi, a Cresta regular and ex-president of the run’s Shuttlecock Club, describes the trip, which descends from the same height as Beachy Head, as "incredibly fast. It exceeds all of your expectations in the best possible way.  People leave it feeling they are convinced they have broken the sound barrier."  

The chaps are currently preparing for the season, so get your woolly overalls, Davy Crockett raccoon-skin caps, gather the troops book a flight for a weekend you're unlikely to forget in a hurry. Jack Mills

 For more information on the Cresta Run, click here

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