Despite the confinements which fall even harsher than the snowfall still expected on our summits at the end of November, the Bigourdans organizers are working hard on the preparations for the Speed Skiing World Cup. An event that will normally be hosted next January by the Gavarnie-Gèdre resort.
Between plotting, taking measures for safety nets or even building the timing hut, the tasks are diverse and numerous. But, “at present 90% of the work is accomplished and for more than 6 months a tremendous momentum has been developed by all the volunteers of the sports club, the departmental and regional authorities, the municipality and the resort of Gavarnie-Gédre, the community of municipalities etc. “, affirms Bruno Montès, coordinator of this new adventure which, once again, is at the origin of this new project around speed skiing. Because, he is with his brother, Jean Lou and the resort at the origin of this discipline in the Pyrenees, born March 10, 1985 in Gavarnie-Gèdre.
Reaching the 200 km / h wall in Gavarnie
From January 17 to 24, 2021, the best skiers on the planet will therefore meet there for the opening of the international speed skiing season and the best will be keen to come to, also, prepare for the world championships, the following week.
Thus, the Tarbais Bastien Montès, 2017 World champion in speed-one with 251.397 km / h reached in Vars, ensures the smooth running of the preparations: “Everything is fine. The track was approved this summer by the FIS (international federation of ski) but in several stages, because if we are sure to be able to run two-thirds of the track up to 178 km / h, the challenge will be to open the last third which would allow us to exceed 200 km / h Suddenly, this would be the first track in the Pyrenees on which skiers could exceed this speed since the current record is held by Andorra with 199 km / h “.
With the family in Gavarnie
An impressive spectacle in perspective for a week where more than 200 people, runners, coaches, sherpas will allow our department to put high-Pyrenean speed skiing in the foreground with its specificities: “Our collaboration with the resort of Gavarnie-Gèdre is quite exceptional. Everyone is invested in an almost family way. It seems easier to organize a World Cup in a smaller resort than in the big ones. But, it is also because it is a discipline which is anchored in the genes of the locals “, concludes Bastien Montès.
From Christmas, the best French skiers should come to train and test the track in preview in order, if necessary, to make certain modifications so that everything is ready as of Monday, January 18.
While waiting to see the barrier of 200 km / h reached, it is indeed the lifting of containment and the first heavy snowfalls that are eagerly awaited …
Gavarnie: opening scheduled for December 19 … “in theory”
The Gavarnie-Gèdre ski area managed by STEM International is preparing for an opening on December 19 in compliance with health measures “in theory! Because, we are waiting for snowfall but, also, to know how the deconfinement will take place” , reacts Coralie Sanchez, communication manager of the Gavarnie-Gèdre station. “It is, for us, a big year because in addition to hosting the World Cup, the station will celebrate its 50 years in 2021. We hope that the season will proceed normally with the reception of the public to finalize all our beautiful projects “The Gavarnie-Gèdre resort, which put its season pass on sale with a 30% discount before November 30, 2020. Once again, the season pass offers unlimited access to the Hautacam and Gavarnie-Gèdre stations and now entitles you to a 10% reduction on purchases in equipment and accessories points of sale in the Hautacam and Gavarnie-Gèdre estates as well as on catering products. Website www.hautacam.com or www.skigavarnie.com for an online order.