A few degrees less and snow would fall.
The World Cup jubilee celebrations in Val Gardena started under a knock-and-tearful rain and with the white flakes topped only on the summit of the Saslong.
To give that touch of originality the presence of two camels, almost a sign of gratitude to the animal from which they have named a series of jumps along the Saslong (“the camel’s goblins”).
The number one event of the 50th anniversary competition under the Fis brand in Val Gardena (there will be other events in the Cup of the Cup in December) has been a good involvement of the local population, many athletes of the past and new generations, somehow tied to the Saslong, the championship track that was initially snatched by a certain Karl Schranz, the most reputed Austrian who described it as a “highway”.
Scrolling through the anniversaries it turns out that the one between the Val Gardena and the great Alpine World Cup skiing was a love intended to last over the years.
In fact, the spark struck a significant day, that of Valentine’s Day in 1969.
On February 14, 48 years ago, Saslong won the Swiss Jean-Daniel Dätwyler. Why then 50 years if the first Cup is 1968? In 1967 the World Cup was started in Val Gardena and in the Ladin valley there were already some Fis A competitions organized in the Cup calendar.
Since 1972, then after the 1970s World Cup, the free fall of the Cup (since 2002 also the Supergigante) is always played in December, following Christmas.
Heart of the Saturday party was Santa Cristina where past champions and athletes gathered together with old-fashioned clothing and museum equipment. To frame, so many fans come to the event. A colorful party accompanied by the notes of various musical bands.
The parade brought the present along the Dursan Street from the Dosses-Maciaconi to the Iman Center, where a number of interesting panels had been set up that highlighted some of the most salient moments of the races in Val Gardena. At first, he could not miss the picture of pioneer Erich Demetz (he was then the longest president of the World Cup) to leave for the Fis 1967 conference in Beirut. Unpublished photos also on the 1970 World Cup panel, but above all the great interest in the parallel epic on Ronc di Ortisei between Gustav Thöni and Ingemar Stenmark, one of the most beautiful and exciting moments in the history of skiing.
To remember that event dated March 23, 1975 was the blue Helmuth Schmalzl that day was there. “The world cup was in three: Klammer, Stenmark and Gustavo. To take Klammer out of the dispute, I thought, who eliminated him after a few shifts, “recalled the former blue city who then had a past as responsible for Fis security.
Images also recalled the famous jump of Uli Spieß of December 15, 1980 that 100 kilometers from the second to the third camel’s hump jumped over 70 meters in length to a height of about 10 meters.
They could not miss the pictures of the companies “Crazy Canucks”, in particular that of Rob Boyd on 13 December 1986 and 12 of the following year. The first was remembered by Michael “Much” Mair, second only 14 cents from Canadian.
“When I was tired of winning with 39, Boyd fell and using a run that had accelerated in the meantime beat me,” reminded the ex-Pusteria. In some editions, there have been real surprises from those who came down with high numbers. On all the German Max Rauffer in 2004.
Then there was a picture of the reliefs brought to Giorgio Piantanida, a dramatic flyer on the descent of December 16, 1989.
A long parenthesis was devoted to Kristian Ghedina, present at the festivities with his red racing suit but above all with a embalmed roe deer in his hand, remembering that arrival of the 2004 descent when a roe deer went on the final schuss while passed “the Ghedo”. The Ampezzo jet on the Saslong won four times (1996, 1998, 1999 and 2001) as the Austrian Klammer.
Among them are Herbert Plank, the first and only South Tyrolean to win the free on Salsong. It was December 18, 1977 when the vipitenese left behind the Austrians Wirnsberg and Klammer. It was not present because of training in South America Werner Heel, who on December 19 won in Superg. On the stage for a greeting and a sign of recognition
A few degrees less and snow would fall.