The dry-land training and Roller Skiing season started in earnest around Europe with the arrival of the summer. While some national races have already taken place, the FIS Roller Skiing World Cup 2008 will kickkicked off yesterday in Piglio/Frosinone, near Rome (ITA), the host city of the FIS Roller Skiing World Championships 2009. Three competitions are on schedule in Italy from 26th to 28th June, a sprint in the free technique in Frosinone, as well as an uphill race in the classical technique and a mass start uphill competition in the free technique, both in Piglio.
Top Cross-Country World Cup athletes such as Giorgio Di Centa, Pietro Piller Cottrer, Valerio Checci and Arianna Follis will use the possibility to test their current shape against roller-ski specialists. For more information on the competitions in Piglio, please click here.
In total, this year’s FIS Roller Skiing World Cup will consist of seven World Cup weekends in five different countries. After Italy, the circus will continue in Markkleeberg (GER) with a sprint, a prologue and a pursuit competition on 4th-6th July. During the second competition period in August, Oroslavje (CRO) and Schmallenberg (GER) are on the schedule. The 2008 FIS World Cup will conclude with the third period consisting of races in the Cesena/Sestriere/Pragelato/Torino region (ITA), La Tremblade (FRA) and the finals in Thessaloniki (GRE). Please click here to see the detailed calendar.
The defending overall World Cup winners are Igor Glushkov (RUS) and Maria Magnusson (SWE). Their toughest challengers in this year’s World Cup will likely come from Italy and Russia.
The 40 year old Glushkov took the victory yesterday in the opening 200m sprint. No big names from the cross-country World Cup circuit participated on the men's side. In the women's race, Mateja Bogatec (ITA) took the victory. Italian World Cup skiers members Karin Moroder and Magda Genuin finished 4th and 7th respectively.
The sprint race was organized by the Sci Club Madonna del Monte of Piglio. The event was a fast appetizer for the three-day-long Rollerski World Cup kermesse that is being hosted in Piglio (Frosinone – Italy) this weekend, as first stage of the most important international tournament.
The sprint race animated the streets of Frosinone's city center, where the athletes specializing in fast races whizzed along the roads. In the end, the challenge for the victory was between Italy and Russia. In the end, both nations were able to take a victory. Among the men, Glushkov, winner of the 2007 Rollerski World Cup, carried the day, while Alessio Berlanda (World Champion title-holder in rollerski sprint races) took second place in front of his team-mate Emanuele Sbabo, winner of last year's race in Frosinone.
Because of the scorching hot weather, some athletes didn't take part in the sprint, saving up energy for the upcoming races. Among those on the sidelines were the members of the Italian cross-country national team, Di Centa, Checchi, Clara, Santus, among others chosen by team manager Marco Selle. The Italian national team is participating in a training camp in Fiuggi and they will certainly have a leading role in today’s race.
Among the women, it was an Italian triumph, thanks to the one-two finish by Mateja Bogatec and Anna Rosa after a thrilling final sprint. The victory of Bogatec is an encore of her last year's success. In third place there was still room for Russia, with the speed specialist Elena Vedeneeva preceding the Italian cross-country national team member Karin Moroder, who came in fourth.
Among the Junior men, Scandinavian victory for Ragnar Bragvin Andresen (NOR), who prevailed over Folco Pizzuto (ITA), while among the Junior ladies, success for Solange Chabloz (ITA) who overcame Luisa Wolf (GER).
The schedule for today includes a 5 km individual race in classic technique on the streets of Piglio.
Source: FIS, newspower.it
DiCenta and Piller Cottrer battling in a competition last year (Photo Credit: Mario Facchini)