FORMER World Superbike champion Carl Fogarty has opened an upmarket ski bar and restaurant with ex-England rugby captain Lawrence Dallaglio and pop star James Blunt.

The Blackburn-born biker and his famous friends opened the Swiss ski resort venture in Verbier with a star-studded reception.

The restaurant, called La Vache, has panoramic views of Val de Bagnes and Mont Blanc.

Paying tribute to it’s five-times champion owner, the restaurant features a namesake ‘Fogarty Pizza’.

And one of the toilets is even themed to feature Foggy on the starting grid.

The restaurant, at the top of the ‘James Blunt Ski Lift’, came about due to the trio’s love of skiing in Verbier, one of the world’s premiere ‘off-piste’ locations.

The trio joined mutual friend and businessman Rob Sawyer to open the new venture to special guests.

Carl said: “I have skied in Verbier lots of times so I had no hesitation when I was asked to get involved with this venture, especially with two guys who I really admire for what they have done in their chosen professions.

“It’s an amazing location with sensational views and the food is pretty awesome too.

“We had great fun over the opening weekend, but it was difficult for me and James to keep up in drinking with a man of the size of Lawrence Dallaglio!”

Legendary chef Heston Blumenthal was also present at the opening celebrations, as was Carl’s friend and co-star of their popular Foggy and Whit: Givin’ It Gas chat show tour, James Whitham.

The pair will be back on tour in the new year, appearing at the Thwaites Empire Theatre, Blackburn, on January 17 from 7.30pm Tickets are available now by calling the box office on 01254 685 500 .