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The heat is on for the beginning of the Ski Mountaineering World Championship to be held in Valcelli

This morning in Pordenone the event that will summon over twenty nations to Friuli Venezia Giulia
Transclautana Ski Alp Race

The heat is on for the beginning of the Ski Mountaineering World Championship to be held in Valcellina. This morning in Pordenone the event that will summon over twenty nations to Friuli Venezia Giulia was officially launched.
From 18 to 25 February the next important international event is to take please, this time hosted in Friuli Venezia Giulia a region with a remarkable sports tradition that encompasses all disciplines. The vast experience and relentless passion will guarantee for the success of the event. The headquarters will be in Claut, Valcellina, in the very heart of the Friuli Dolomites; the range has been recently declared a World Heritage Site du UNESCO, and some of the races, given the scarcity of snow at low altitude, will be held in the Piancavallo district.Carlo Martini, President of the Organizing Committee, did the honours and described the process that led on 2 December 2010 to found the Committee that shall ultimately manage the important event. “In my opinion the Committee is not an article of association, a formal document – stated Martini – as it is comprised with a variety of elements. It comprises the whole population of Friuli Venezia Giulia, which either indirectly or directly contributes to making this event turn into reality; the local bodies, a including the Regional Government that has always believed in and funded the World Championship; the sponsors that saw in this event a vehicle to promote and launched their products, thus believing in the message and the visibility of these incredible races; finally, the people of Valcellina, its five municipalities (Andreis, Barcis, Cimolais, Claut, Erto and Casso) of the Pedemontana Pordenonese (Aviano) and all the volunteers who will work with passion and dedication”. “The glue for all the different functions involved in the organization – continued Martini – is the trust we have in one another, this approach to work that allowed us, in three months only, to make huge steps forward”.“We are ready” conceded Gionata Sturam the Mayor of Claut. “We are ready to accommodate the athletes who will arrive from all over the world to race in our mountains, – continued the Mayor – but we are also prepared to leverage this opportunity to spread the word about this land. The World Championship is not the final aim, but rather the starting point to promote this area. In our village we have excellent sport facilities such as the Ice Park and the Sports Hall; moreover we are fully capable of accommodating both the athletes and their assistants in the newly refurbished hotels, not to mention the “alberghi diffusi”, a particular accommodation solution that will increase the receptive capacity. A Tourism Consortium was recently founded to promote the offering found in the Friuli Dolomites and the Pordenone area. It should also be reminded that the Championship is to take place at the heart of the Dolomiti Friulane Natural Park, our jewel on the crown, the true added value to the event”. During the event the idea of the Dolomites being part of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites was repeated several times; the Councillor for the Pordenone Province Michele Verdichizzi explained the importance of such a prestigious award; “It is as far as 2004 that we started working to achieve this important goal, – told Verdichizzi – and our efforts led, in 2009, to the Dolomites being declared World Heritage Site. It is important to note that ten percent of the Dolomite range is located in the Province of Pordenone. Moreover, in order to provide support to the mountain community and to remind that the Dolomites are also an asset of Friuli Venezia Giulia, we planned an important event from 18 to 26 June”.The Piancavallo district is to host the two time trials scheduled for the Ski Mountaineering World Championship, though the same could apply to the relay and print races in case there should be snow issues in Claut. “We gave our full support to our friends in Claut – started Stefano Mazzolini President of Promotur – and in addition to the two scheduled races we are ready to contribute in order to salvage the races that will not be held in Claut. Promotur truly believes in ski mountaineering, in fact we are looking for solutions where our athletes can practice safely on our downhill slopes. The athletes themselves do not bring any direct revenue to Promotur, though they do so indirectly by bringing wealth to the whole Friuli Venezia Giulia”. The World Championship originate from the organization of the Transclautana, a ski mountaineering race that was born in Claut seven years ago. “The Ski Mountaineering World Championship – said Elio De Anna, Councillor for Sports for the Regional Authority of Friuli Venezia Giulia – is not only among the Top Events at regional level, it is a super event, as the appeal of the races on athletes and mountain lovers alike is incredible. We also have to think about the future; one year from now, when the World Championship will be a memory, there will be the eighth edition of Transclautana, a well-established tradition in Valcellina that has much to do with eco-sustainable tourism. The tourism offering is truly excellent; we have to work hard and provide continuity to our sports focus as it closely relates to tourism”. “A winning formula should never be changed” said Luca Ciriani, vice-President of the Regional Government. “The idea – continued Ciriani – is to combine sports events, tourism and mountain promotion. This formula is very simple and maybe this is the reason why it’s winning. We applied it for the first time to the World University Games in Tarvisio; we had to come up with reasons that could tear down the wall of indifference and poor attention that was affecting our mountains in those days. This idea is accomplished only through teamwork. We are blessed with natural beauties that we must promote, and sports can provide the best of chances to spread the word about this valley. This is done to ensure a safe future for our mountains and to guarantee to get down to business”.
Sergio Buricelli, technical supervisor for the World Championship, concluded the round of speeches with his important contribution, before thanking all the institutions and people who work and will devote their time to these sports days, and explained the event programme, inviting the audience to participating in the opening ceremony to be held in Claut on Saturday, 19 February at 6.30 pm. Thanks to Telecom Italia an event will be held on Saturday afternoon with the alpinist Hans Kammerlander. “The truly outstanding and unique element in the organization of this historical event - said Sergio Buricelli – was the winning choice of involving the Regional Government and the competent Local Bodies also from the technical and operational standpoint. The Regional Authority is giving a factual contribution by providing services and staff that will allow to cut the overhead costs. The snow levels on the racetracks will be consistently monitored by the Snow and Avalanche Desk and the Regional Forestry Service that will issue a daily avalanche bulletin. The Regional Weather Observatory will provide support for the local weather forecast. The Civil Defence will contribute staff, means and facilities for the logistical management during the race week. Next to them, a large number of qualified collaborators from all volunteer associations will separate and clear all the tracks, which will require the technical support of National Alpine Rescue Corp; in bundle with the 118 helicopter rescue service provided by the Regional Government and the Regional Healthcare Authority they will guarantee for the safety of the athletes and the fans alike”.
 The launch ended with a local product tasting session that goes under the name of “tipicamente friulano”. Ersa, the Regional Agency for Rural Development, will participate in the Ski Mountaineering World Championship by guaranteeing collective catering to be “typically Friulano” throughout the event.

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