It’ll be pure adrenaline with a drop of more than 1000 meters!
The Stelvio slope is now all white and men are at work to place 90 cubic meters of snow produced by the snow cannons of Società Impianti Bormio to increase the thickness of the snow that tourists and downhill racers love so much.
Yesterday (Thursday) the grooming of the upper part – where “real” snow was already present – was completed, and Massimo Rinaldi, the race director, is is satisfied. “The race will start at an altitude of 2255, as always. This is one of the characteristics of the race in Bormio. When the skis of the racers are beyond the starting gate, they can see Bormio 1010 meters below them.” says Rinaldi.
“The snowy conditions are OK, we feel the same and there is no anxiety in carrying on the works as has happened during the last few years. A bit of “real” snow and the cold are doing the rest.” rejoices Rinaldi.
The SIB team is satisfied too. Pasquale Canclini, the technical director of Società Impianti Bormio says that “47 snow cannons are working at maximum speed and we’ve already produced 90% of the 100,000 cubic meters of snow that is needed to prepare the Stelvio slope. We don’t stop, because the cold allows the production of snow in a more efficient way and at a lower cost.We produce as much snow as we can – continues the “Man of the Snow” of the Stelvio – because we think of the race, but also of the tourists and the rest of the ski season.”
Six people are working day and night on the slope on behalf of SIB. “They are 4 snowmakers – continues Pasquale Canclini – that verify that the snow cannons are working properly and two snowcat drivers who move the snow along the slope. We are working well and without haste. The slope will be perfect and we are thinking of opening it next Saturday.” For information and updates, please visit the Società Impianti website www.bormioski.eu.
The engineer, Pasquale Canclini, is really excited this year. “The collaboration with Technoalpin is getting more and more important, and so important that Bormio has helped develop some of the snow cannons that are now working at maximum speed. The new FT10 scored a record this morning! A production of 70 cubic meters of snow per hour. It’s a dream, considering that in the past we considered ourself happy and satisfied with 50-55 cubic meters!”
The FIS inspection is going to take place next Sunday. Helmuth Schmalzl will give the final information about the position of the safety nets and the preparation of the ground. Then, the racers will face what everyone considers one of the most beautiful and difficult tracks in the world. Only Wengen has a greater drop difference, but the length is higher. 3270 meters for the Stelvio, 4415 for the Lauberhorn. The Streif slope in Kitzbuehel is 3312 meters long, but has a drop of ‘only’ 860 meters. Such difference can be compared to a 50 floor skyscraper!
The first edition of the World Cup race (as we know it nowadays) dates back to December 29, 1993. The winner was the Austrian racer Hannes Trinkl with a time of 1’55.76. The track record belongs to the Norwegian racer Lasse Kjus who scored 1’55 .35 on December 29, 1995.
Such a technical track is however difficult to compare from one season to another, because the work of the FIS members in creating it the track must adapt to the conditions of the snow, and the racing time can radically change in the presence (or absence) of a bend.
The winner’s time in the most recent years has always been around and under two minutes. Two minutes to cover 3 km and 200 meters … That’s not bad at all!