FEB 22, 2021
The ISMF World Cup in Val Martello in South Tyrol can be regarded as a rehearsal for the ski mountaineering World Championships at the beginning of March. The Backland athletes showed once more that they are in excellent shape for the coming season highlight. Rémi Bonnet achieved a second place at the individual race, Davide Magnini and Iwan Arnold also ranked at the top with two 4th places respectively.
Masses of snow, blue skies and sunshine – that’s how the Val Martello presented itself for the 4th ISMF World Cup. The location in South Tyrol chosen for the highest league of the skimoutaineering race series was the ideal stage for the sport and the athletes. A sprint race took place on the Saturday and a high alpine individual race on Sunday.
At the beginning of the individual race the Italian Davide Magnini was in the lead, closely followed by a chasing group including the Swiss Rémi Bonnet. Halfway through the race however, Magnini had to concede the leading position. After a hard battle during the alpine and selective second part of the race Bonnet had the edge over Magnini, raced to second position in the last downhill and thus secured a podium position. Magnini had to be content with a 4th place.
Magnini commented his race as follows:
‘During the first and second uphill I was in the lead, but then just in front of a transition area I ran a longer loop than my chasers and I could leave the transition area only in 4th place. For the 3rd uphill I put on the wrong skins and then fell back even more seconds during the skating part. Up until the end I gave my very best during the up- and the downhills and could cross the finish line in 4th place. I had wanted more, but I am getting in shape to be on top of my game at the World Championships.’
At the sprint race Iwan Arnold, who had been one of the favorites, had bad luck during a qualification round; he lost a ski and therefore had to go to his limit already in his first run. He played it well tactically during the preliminary rounds and only in the final it wasn’t possible to beat the competition anymore. With a 4th place Arnold narrowly missed the podium but was happy with his result: ‘Everything was still going well during the preliminary rounds. I already had to go full throttle during the qualification though and the last heats cost me a lot of my strength. In the final I was missing a little bit gas, but I am super happy with a 4th place in this field. This is an improvement, first 15th, then 5th and today a 4th place. Now I am ready for the World Championships.’
Patrick Tritscher, who manages the Sports Marketing Backcountry Touring division at Atomic and therefore the Backland athletes, says with regards to the upcoming World Championships in Andorra: ‘All athletes are now fully focused on the World Championships in Andorra, which will take place soon – and can take place soon for our athletes. The ones who run on a high level have shown this already in Val Martello and others have taken a further step forward. The equipment is perfect – the Backland Ultimate is performing well in all disciplines and conditions, the trust is there. We can look forward to each single race at the altitude of Andorra.’
Next up therefore will be the World Championships in Andorra, which will be the season highlight from the 1st to the 7th March 2021.