Preparations for the European Ski Orienteering Championships and Ski Orienteering World Cup Final are coming to an end. Athletes from 18 countries – Austria, Belarus, Estonia, Russia, Italy, Japan, Norway, Romania, Turkey, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Sweden, Slovenia, Czech Republic, Egypt, Switzerland and Finland – are going to visit the capital of Ugra. Most of them are arriving on March 8, while Andrey Lamov and Alena Trapeznikova of Russia, who place first and fifth in the World Ranking list, have already started training process in Khanty-Manisysk.
Since athletes are not allowed to visit the competition venue, they practice on the tracks of “Dolina Ruchyov”. “I have been here for four days. I was in Sweden before that and since it is four hour time difference I decided to come to Khanty-Mansiysk a bit earlier to acclimatize, get enough sleep and train, – explained Andrey Lamov. – It is the end of the season so excessive training is not necessary. We are working on maintaining our shape. Only on March 9 during the official training we will be able to see the Winter Sports Center for the first time. Obviously we are not allowed into the competition zone as well as we cannot see the map. It is fair-play, no one breaks the rules. I have heard enough about the famous biathlon stadium and now I have a rough idea about its landscape after training in “Dolina Ruchyov”. The competition is going to be tough but it is going to be tough for everybody”.
Alena Trapeznikova arrived early as well. “We spend summer doing all the hard work, now it is a matter of keeping our shape as good as possible. It is my first time in Khanty-Mansiysk but in my experience Russia handles the organisation of sport orienteering events the best. Other countries try to attain to our level. That is why I expect everything to be great”, – said Alena. Like other participants she will see the track only a day before the start of the competition. “Fair-play is everything. We all have equal conditions before the start – the same weather, the same track”.
There are five races to wait for:
March 10, 14:00 – Sprint
March 11, 14:00 – Middle
March 12, 14:00 – Sprint relay (2 people)
March 14, 14:00 – Long distance
March 15, 14:00 – Relay (3 people)
Ski orienteering may not yet be as popular sport as biathlon, but just as unpredictable and outstanding. If you make a mistake by missing a control point, you can forget about top-three. Come and see the exiting world of ski orienteering with its passion and thrill. We kindly welcome you to the Filipenko Winter Sport Center on March 8 – 16.