A stage of 3 competitions requires 100 people and a budget of 100.000 euro
MILAN – A bunch of races to go, still a lot of work to do. The ISMF World Cup is approaching the end of the season next week in Mondolé, Italy, while the LDT Grande Course are staging big emotions over the Alps. But behind the athletes and above their records and performances, there are other hard working people, preparing the champions’ terrain.
They are the peaceful “army” of the organizing committees, involved in hosting races and events. Volunteers as for mission, professional by action. They care about the security of the people and the safety of the athletes. They have to deal with any sort of meteo, and they have to cope with any surprise.
«The work behind the scene of a race is silent and essential for the development of any event», says Armando Mariotta , ISMF president. This year has been peculiar with lack of snow at the beginning, and high temperature all over the season. After Font Blanca, Valtellina – Orobie, Alpinski with the European Champs and Transcavallo, now it is the time of Mondolé Ski Alp, North – Western Italy.
«Thanks to the special climate of this valley, we are usually lucky with stable snow also late in the season», says Giorgio Colombo president of the organizing committee. On the average, there are almost 100 people working for a Skimo World Cup weekend of three races. Considering also the cost of helicopters and snowmobiles, if those people were not volunteers, the budget of such races would easily get higher than 100.000 euro.
«Figures and numbers are different compared to Alpine skiing. Priorities and requirements are very similar, though», adds ISMF vice president Marco Mosso, who was in charge, earlier in February 2016, also of the organization of two Alpine skiing World Cup races in La Thuile, Northern Italy. Among the priorities is the safety of both audience and racers
That is why the proximity of ski lifts is a main advantage. Fan and spectators can use them to reach good views alongside the race path.
«On the one hand, the Individual race is the more demanding competition to set up, because it involves high altitude track that must be secured and constantly monitored», adds Colombo, «The Vertical race is, on the other hand, among the most spectacular, especially when athletes “climb” faster than lifts!».
This is, usually, the audience’s most favourite competition that can gather up to 2.000 people, which means a great economical revenue for the location, not only during the World Cup, but also all over the year. The second priority is flexibility in order to adapt promptly to meteo, wind, fog and snow conditions. «We must be ready with a “Plan B”, and sometimes a “Plan C”, too – explains president Colombo -: if the situation requires, we have to switch our mind and adapt. Fast and precise».
ISMF International Ski mountaineering Federation
Federal press office