Red Bull X-Alps 2013 and the Italian athletes: Peter Gebhard
Born in 1985, Peter Gebhard will take part in his first ever Red Bull X-Alps on July 7 2013. Together with the other two Italians, Aaron Durogati and expert Andy Frötscher, the man from Val Gardena will fly and run across the Alps from Salzburg in Austria to the Principality of Monaco.
Peter Gebhard is lucky to be alive. In 2008 he had a bad flying accident; forced to make rescue flight, he landed badly and broke two vertebrae. But Peter is extremely determined and he returned the following year, competing in the World Cup in Korea and finishing 7th. Since then he has continued to represent Italy. In July 2012 he set a record 277km flight of in just 9.5 hours through Austria and the Italian Alps. This will be his first Red Bull X-Alps.
When and why did you begin paragliding?
I started paragliding in 2002. Flying has always been in my mind since I was I child. When I grew up I started model flying and finally at the age of 17 I started to live my dream.
What is your mountaineering experience?
I live in the Dolomites and so mountaineering is a big part of my life. In summer I climb, do via ferratas and do some hike and flys to the peaks in South Tyrol (for example: Ortler 3,905m). In winter skitouring is a good training and makes big fun as well.
What is your paragliding experience?
Since I started flying in 2002 I fly about 200 hours per year. From 2005 till 2008 I flew mostly XC. From 2009 on I dedicated my time to national and international competitions. XC flights helped me to learn to take my own decisions before and during flying. On the other hand competitions improved my speed.
What is your adventure racing / endurance sport experience?
I took part at a few walk and fly competitions in Italy. In my free time I started some adventures like the three day trip from Brixen to Feltre and back to Trento, only by flying and walking. Other one day trips helped me to approach the Red Bull X-Alps.
What does your typical training week consist of?
In summer I do lots of walk and flys. With my friend I do some climbing and via ferratas. In winter ski touring is a good training and makes lots of fun as well! Going to the fitness center is also part of my training in winter.
What are your best and worst adventure/flying moments?
Best...there are so many best moments... one of those was toplanding on a peak, sleep there in my tend and fly down the day after just when the sun rises! Worst: My crash in 2008. After a collapse and cravat I had to throw my rescue but the impact to the ground was too hard and I broke two vertebrae.
What are the sporting moments you are most proud of?
Setting a new world record by flying over 9,5 hours and 277 km! (FAI triangle) -My comeback in 2009 (after an injury, see above) at the Corean Worldcup. I ended up 7th and was qualified for the Superfinal.
When and how did you first hear about the Red Bull X-Alps?
Since 2003 I am a fan of Red Bull X-Alps!
Have you competed in the Red Bull X-Alps before and if so, when?
What appeals to you about the Red Bull X-Alps?
Go to my limits! And the adventure to fly and walk to Europe and my home, South Tyrol!
What will be your strategy during the race?
My strategy is to be perfectly prepared, mentally and physically. During the race I want to be able to handle with every kind of inconvenience in order to make it to Monaco. I want to hold out!
On average, over a third of the Red Bull X-Alps participants fail to finish the event. Why do you think you will make it?
Because I am strong in mind and body and I really WANT it!!
What scares you the most about the event?
Failing due to a stupid error!
Have you ever done anything of this magnitude before?
The Paragliding World Cup means a lot to me but the Red Bull X-Alps is something special. I think it will be the adventure of my life!
Date of birth: 01. Jan. 1985
City: St. Ulrich - Val Gardena
Profession: mechanical designer for windpower plants
Personal Website: www.gebhardpeter.it
Member of the Italian National Team 2012
2th Italian Overall Ranking 2012
4th Italian Championship 2012 1th Lega Meduno 2012
11th Worldcup Macedonia 2012 2th Austrian Championship 2011
2th Italian Overall Ranking 2011
10th Worldcup Korea 2011
8th Overall Worldcup 2010
9th Worldcup Italy 2010
4th Worldcup Japan 2010
7th Worldcup Korea 2009
Cross Country: 277km FAI Triangle World Record (XContest) 2012
247 km Out and Return 2008
RED BULL X-ALPS 2013
12/06/2013 - Red Bull X-Alps 2013 and the Italian athletes: Aaron Durogati
05/06/2013 - Red Bull X-Alps 2013: July take off!