The 2018 European Ski Mountaineering Championships begin today on the slopes of Mount Etna in Sicily, Italy. The competitions take place on the north face of the volcano from February 22 to 24.
The ISMF competitions are back in the foothills of Mount Etna in Sicily with the European Championships, six years after a stop at the 2012 World Cup.
Everything is located in Nicolosi, a few kilometers from the city of Catania. The first competition is the Sprint race scheduled for today, followed by the Vertical race on Friday. The individual race on Saturday 24 closes the European Championships.
The 19 competing countries have arrived in Italy in recent days to familiarize themselves with the course. Exceptionally, there is even a delegation from Brazil.
Due to adverse weather conditions, the organizing committee led by Vasco Agen made the difficult decision to move the competitions to Piano Provenzana, on the northern ridge of the volcano. The races should have taken place on the south ridge near the Rifugio Sapienza.
The inaugural parade of the national teams was scheduled for yesterday afternoon in the center of Nicolosi, while this morning the âCirque Blancâ climbs higher up the mountain for the first race. Sprint competition is an exciting mix of speed and technical skills.
On Friday 23, the athletes will compete in the 650m + Vertical. This race, like the individual race, is open to all FISI members. The last competition of the 2018 ISMF European Championships will take place on Saturday 24th with the Individual race; 1850m of elevation gain spread over four climbs.
European titles will be awarded to the Cadet, Junior, Under 23 and Senior categories. The circuit laid out for the cadets is 910m long, a little shorter than the Juniors who tackle 1350m of elevation gain.