Aaron Durogati and Sebastian Huber win Red Bull X-Alps 2017 prologue
Today Aaron Durogati (ITA) and Sebastian Huber (GER) won the Leatherman Prologue, which marks the start of the Red Bull X-Alps 2017, the race across the Alps from Salzburg to Montecarlo by paraglider or on foot that kicks off on 2 July.
Aaron Durogati (ITA1) and Sebastian Huber (GER1) got off to a great start today. The Leatherman Prologue was on the agenda for the 31 athletes who on 2 July will set off from Salzburg in Austria and make their way across the Alps by paraglider or on foot all the way to the Principality of Monaco. This was an interesting pre-start which not only gives some first clues about the level of fitness of the athletes, but also provides an important bonus for the top three.
In the race up and down Zwölferhorn the best, the fastest were the two-times winner of the Paragliding World Cup Aaron Durogati from Meran, Italy, and 31-year old Sebastian Huber from Germany. The pair crossed the finish line in one hour and 53 minutes, followed by Benoît Outters who stopped the clock a minute later.
All three receive an additional Ledlenser Night Pass, which allows them to hike through the night. In a new rule this year, the Leatherman Prologue also directly affects the kick-off on day 2 at Salzburg which will have a staggered start: first off will be Durogati and Huber, followed by the remaining athletes who will be delayed by the time they finished behind the Prologue winners.
Two points worth noting. The first is that the organizers “cancelled” all fying today due to dangerously strong south-westerly winds, meaning that the athletes had to run back down from Zwölferhorn. The second is that the 4-times Red Bull X-Alps winner Christian Maurer did not race today due to health problems. Because the Prologue is obligatory Maurer will start with an automatic penalty and last therefore on day 2, should the race doctor decide the Swissman is healthy enough to take part in the competition. This is obviously bombshell news. Time will tell.