There’s no doubt about it. The biggest star at this year’s World Championship doesn’t wear skates and is never on the ice. He’s a creature of few words, but has somehow captured the attention of hockey world with his amusing antics. IIHF.com sat down with the famous Swiss icon to learn more about the top cow at the World Championship, Cooly.
Q: Cooly, how did you get involved with the World Championship?
A: I’ve always been a big fan of hockey, and have always wished that I could skate. When I found out that the World Championship was going to be in Switzerland, I was so excited. A friend of mine asked if cows were allowed to buy tickets to the games, and when I was told no, I was crushed. But then the people were so interested to meet a cow that loved hockey, and the rest is history.
Q: You have impressive dance skills, where did you learn your moves?
A: In the barn where I grew up, we had a farmer that really rocked on the Alp Horn. We would organize dances on the weekends, which I always looked forward to. I also admit, that sometimes I looked through the windows when the village kids were watching MTV to learn some more modern moves.
Q: You get along very well with the fans from all 16 countries, do you have any favourites?
A: Of course, I like my Swiss friends because it’s nice to hear Swiss German around Berne and Kloten, but the people from all countries have been really great. In Kloten the Finns and Hungarians definitely are fun to hang out with. In Berne, I like the yellow jerseys of the Swedes.
Q: What will you do with the World Championship ends?
A: First, I will go to Appenzell to visit some relatives and take a short vacation. After that, I hope to continue to spread my good will and cheer around Switzerland in the upcoming seasons.
Q: Do you have a favourite Swiss team?
A: Right now, I’m pretty partial to Berne and Kloten, but that might be because I have grown to love the cities so much in the last weeks.
Q: Are you in touch with any mascots from past championships?
A: When I found out what my duties would be, I got phone calls from Finky in Finland, the polar bear in Canada and a group of beavers in Latvia. All of them gave me some very good tips and were very helpful and supportive.
Q: What’s the hardest part of being a mascot?
A: I love giving high five and hugs, but sometimes people sneak up on me and it scares me a little. After all, I am a cow, and you wouldn’t sneak up from a behind a cow in a pasture. But for the most part, people just like to say hi and are very friendly.
Q: How many hugs do you give on the average day?
A: More than I can count on all my hooves.
Q: What’s your advice to young kids who look up to you?
A: Have fun, follow your dreams and drink more milk.
Bessie McMoo is a freelance veterinarian who also speaks the language of cows. She is an avid hockey fan and has written several books on mascots around the world.