ZUG (Switzerland) – Infront Sports & Media, a Wanda Sports company, and the ISMF have extended their media and marketing agreement for the 2016-2021 ISMF Individual, Sprint and Vertical World Cup and the ISMF World and Continental Championships.

Coverage of all events

The leading international sports marketing company Infront will continue to produce and distribute the 5×15 minute magazine highlight programmes for all World Cup weekends as well as a 25 minute magazine for the ISMF World Championships. The programming will be produced in HD to the highest industry standards to continue increasing exposure for Ski Mountaineering.

The magazine programming offers race footage as well as results and standings, background on the event location, insight into training sessions, athlete profiles and background coverage – all with English commentary. The distribution strategy is global, starting with countries where the ISMF World Cup is widely spread and also reaching territories where Ski Mountaineering is a rising sport.

Sponsorship advertising alongside a growing sport

In addition, Infront is handling the majority of advertising rights within camera view and the implementation of partner advertising materials. The sponsorship packages include valuable exposure on the bibs and across inflatables, banners and flags in the start area, along the course and in the finish area. Furthermore, the logos are included in all official print materials, on the backdrops, in the video clips on the ISMF YouTube channel as well as on the ISMF website.

For the upcoming season, the sponsorship portfolio is led by Title Sponsor Intersport. Based in Bern, Switzerland, the world’s biggest sporting goods retailer with 5,900 stores in 65 countries and annual retail sales of EUR 11.3 billion, has renewed and increased its presence in both ISMF World Cup and World Championships.

Full recognition by the IOC

In August 2016, the ISMF officially obtained full recognition from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and is since then benefitting from even greater popularity and awareness for the sport. Broken down into three disciplines – Individual, Vertical and Sprint – the 2016-2017 ISMF World Cup is scheduled from 21 January to 9 April and will be held in Andorra (Font Blanca), France (Cambre d’Aze), Turkey (Erzincan), Italy (Prato Nevoso) and Spain (Val d’Aran). The ISMF World Championships will be held in Italy (Transcavallo) from 23 February to 1 March 2017.

Ski mountaineering – a rising star

Bruno Marty, Infront’s Executive Director Winter Sports: “The extended long-term agreement with the ISMF for the sport of Ski Mountaineering allows us to continue building on the momentum we have achieved through the TV production and broadcast take-up of magazine programming for the events. Handling both media and marketing aspects, we can offer valuable commercial opportunities for brands keen to get in on the action of this growing and popular segment of winter sport.”

Armando Mariotta, ISMF President: “The extended agreement with Infront is the result of a great collaboration and the clear path of success we have taken. With Infront by our side we have increased exposure and achieved greater recognition for our sport. Now with the official acknowledgment from the IOC we are keen to continue to benefit from Infront’s expertise and sustain the success.”

About ISMF

The International Ski Mountaineering Federation (ISMF) is the world governing body of Ski Mountaineering based in Lausanne (CH) and Villanova Mondovì (Italy). As a non-profit association it co-ordinates and promotes all matters in respect to the sport and its competitions, consisting of 30 National Federations from Europe, Asia and North America. The ISMF Series of events includes the World Cup held annually, the ISMF World Championships held biennially on odd years, the Continental Championships staged on a biennial basis held on even years and the ISMF Series. The ISMF also has an agreement with Les Grandes Courses Series for the management of the ISMF World Ranking where all types of ISMF events are included. For further information please visit www.ismfskievents.com

About Infront Sports & Media

Infront Sports & Media is the most respected sports marketing company in the world, managing a comprehensive portfolio of top properties. Led by President & CEO Philippe Blatter, Infront covers all aspects of successful sporting events – including distribution of media rights, sponsorship, media production and event operation – and has won a reputation for its high standards of delivery. As the number one player in winter sport and with a leading role in football, summer and endurance sports, Infront enjoys long-lasting partnerships with 170 rights-holders and hundreds of sponsors and media companies. Headquartered in Zug, Switzerland, Infront has a team of more than 900 experienced staff working from over 35 offices across more than 15 countries, delivering 4,100 event days of top class sport around the world every year. In November 2015, Infront was integrated into Wanda Sports Holding, part of the Chinese conglomerate the Dalian Wanda Group.

In the women race Laetitia Roux completed her comeback over Jennifer Fiechter. After several seasons the Valtellina Orobie is back among the great worldwide ski mountaineering events as second appointment of the 2016 ISMF World Cup. The 30th edition featured an unusual start and finish to be crossed on foot. The athletes of the individual event have had to prove their worth on a track with 1750 m of positive altitude difference, 5 uphill stretches, 5 slopes, 11 set-up changes, open ridges and spectacular downhill chase-downs. The little snow that fell so far this winter had made these parts all the more athletically challenging. On his home mountains Michele Boscacci has attempted since the very start to win the race; he lived the dream and gave hope to his fans for three quarters of the race, before Kilian Jornet caught up and got the better of him. After a spectacular head-to-head, the two came together at the finish line in Campelli, a few kilometres from Albosaggia. The winner was declared by photo finish and then using the chip. Jornet finished the race in 1h, 35’28”609, Boscacci in 1h 35’28”690. Anton Palzer, the first among the Espoir, came third in 1h 35’56”, followed by a steadily and progressively growing Robert Antonioli. The top ten also included Xavier Gachet (FRA), Valentin Favre (FRA), Mathéo Jacquemoud (FRA), Martin Anthamatten (SUI), Matteo Eydallin and Alexis Sevennec (FRA). The women – and junior men – race comprised 4 uphill and as many downhill stretches (1315 D+ 1315D-). As for the women the French Laetitia Roux got her first success. The queen of ski mountaineering was restored to her throne ending the race first in 1h 42’30” before her Swiss rival Jennifer Fiechter - 1h 44’59” – and the Swede Emelie Forsberg – 1h 46’51”. Worth reporting is that Forsberg lost the second place after a time penalty: incorrect position of her skis in the bag. The Spaniard Claudia Galicia finished fourth before the azzurra Katia Tomatis; then, Valentine (France), Martina Valmassoi (Italy), Mireia Mirò and Marta Garcia (Spain) and the young – and first among the Espoir – Alba De Silvestro (Italy). In the Junior race Italy conquered the first two spots with Davide Magnini e Giulia Compagnoni; after 3 uphill and 3 downhill stretches (990 D+ 990 D-), the podium was completed by Lena Bonnel (France) and the local favourite Giulia Murada. As regards the men podium, the French Samuel Equy finished second and Nicolò Canclini won the bronze medal. Tomorrow the World Cup circus will be back on track at the Centro Sportivo Caspoggio with the Sprint event. Photo Gallery HD https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0Bxbuxds-oXM6aENMQ0FIa3E3U2c&usp=sharing Online on ISMF website : http://ismf-ski.org/www/content/races-result?id=152 All the ISMF World Cup rankings are online on http://ismf-ski.org/ismf2011/rankings.php