Italian Cross Country Ski Team Warming Up for FIS Marathon

Posted By: The Ski Channel on January 5, 2012 10:13 am

The international challenge of the cross country skiing Long Distance Race starts next Sunday in Czech Republic, and the Italian Winter Sport Federation lines up a team of ten athletes. Among these stands out the Olympian Cristian Zorzi, also Fabio Santus and Marco Cattaneo, who aim to reclaim the podium in the general ranking of the past two stops.

With the new year, the world of the cross country ski long distance races is ready to welcome the FIS Marathon Cup,  a challenging and unique event that links elite athletes with thousands of fans of the discipline. FIS Marathon Cup is seen by federations and private clubs as an extraordinary opportunity to line up at the starting line the highest level of cross-country skiers, but also athletes specialized in this agonistic formula that lives under the aegis of the Worldloppet.

Antonella Confortola. Photo: Brena/COMetaPress

Italy should be considered among one of the top countries in the event. Their 2012 team for Long Distance Race “World Cup”, FISI (the Italian Winter Sports Fed) sets up a team of ten athletes. Leading the Italian expedition is the duo made up by Fabio Santus and Marco Cattaneo, who have much experience in this kind of competition: Santus was the winner in 2010, and he closed the last year with a second place in the final ranking, while Cattaneo conquered the Crystal Award in 2006 and 2009.

On their side there will be Bruno Carrara, Sergio Bonaldi, Florian Kostner and Simone Paredi (winner of Rollerski World Cup 2011) and for the first time on the “dream team” of the long distance is Olympian Cristian Zorzi. For the women, Antonella Confortola and Sabina Valbusa are confirmed, together with Stephanie Santer, the new entry.

Sergio Bonaldi. Photo: Brena/COMetaPress

“Our aim is to collect the most points as possible in the free technique races in which we are the favourites,” commented Fabio Santus, “and considering that the classic technique race is 7 out of 10, we have to pay attention to Scandinavians skiers.”

The FIS Marathon Cup normally starts with La Sgambeda in Livigno (ITA) as the opening race in December, but this year it had to be cancelled, so the 2012 calendar is going to officially start this Sunday with the Jezerzka Padesatka, a 50 km classic technique race in Czech Republic, followed by a 15 day break off the circuit, to be continued with an event every weekend until March 17th, 2012.


Bruno Carrara. Photo: Brena/COMetaPress Stephanie Santer. Photo: Brena/COMetaPress

Team manager Silvio Fauner has assigned Corrado Vanini and Michele Vairoli all the activities linked to technical assistance, while Simone Diamantini is taking care of the athlete training. Silvano Bettineschi deals with the companies that support the XCSki Long Distance Italian Team: their main sponsor Molinari, and Scame, Neuberg, Officine Meccaniche di Ponte Nossa, and special partner Gech Bingo.

Sabina Valbusa Befanalau. Photo: Brena/COMetaPress

FIS Marathon Cup 2012

Date Race Country Km Techn
08.01.2012   Jizerská Padesátka CZE 50 km CT
22.01.2012   Dolomitenlauf AUT 60 km FT
29.01.2012 Marcialonga ITA 70 km CT
05.02.2012 Koenig Ludwig Lauf GER 50 km CT
12.02.2012 La Transjurassienne FRA 76 km FT
19.02.2012 Tartu Maraton EST 63 km CT
25.02.2012 Finlandia Hiihto FIN 50 km CT
04.03.2012 Vasaloppet SWE 90 km CT
11.03.2012 Engadin Skimarathon SUI 42 km FT
17.03.2012 Birkebeinerrennet NOR 54 km CT


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