17th Pierra Menta: Boscacci & Murada, naturally
The hardest and most spectacular ski mountaineering competition in Europe, the 17th Pierra Menta, was won by Boscacci & Murada
|On 25 January the Italians Graziano Boscacci & Ivan Murada won the first-ever ski mountaineering World Championship at Serre Chavalier, France. Last week the duo crossed the border once again for Areches Beaufort, close to Albertville, to compete in, and dominate, the 17th Pierra Menta, the hardest and most spectacular ski mountaineering competition in Europe. |
Spread out over four days, the race starts off with 2557m height difference on days one and two, followed by 2750m on day three and a mere 1610 on day four.
On Thursday 7 March Boscacci & Murada finished the first stage two seconds ahead of the field. At this point they took the lead and, it should be said immediately, never let it slip away. Last years winners Brosse & Gignoux from France placed second on day one, ahead of another Italian pair Fontana & Negroni.
On Friday Boscacci & Murada extended their lead by 1 minute and 24 seconds over Brosse & Gignoux, while on Saturday they added a further 14 seconds. On Sunday all four, to the delight of the crowd, finished the race off in style by crossing the finishing line together.
Fontana & Negroni placed third overall, finishing 16 minutes and 15 seconds behind the leaders.
The womens Pierra Menta was dominated by the French hosts: first, second and third place all went to French teams, lead ably by the recently crowned World Champions Ducognon & Oggeri
Should someone ask me what makes the Pierra Menta such a mythical race, I wouldnt hesitate for a second in answering: the crowd. In the competitions history the crowd has always been the protagonist, at a par with the athletes themselves. On Saturday there were six thousand spectators on the Grand Mont at 2686m the highest peak on the course. The Pierra Menta is truly irrÃ©sistible!.
Boscacci and Murada told us on the phone: Â«Obviously were overjoyed, just like its obvious that it wont change our lives. We are, and remain, amateurs. Graziano works in the family carpentry, Ivan at the local Asl at Sondrio. Perhaps therell be a couple more sponsors and that would be fine, at least like this one talks about our sport. The real worry is the training though: this year, with so little snow, we had to train on pistes with artificial snow. We were literally kicked off the slopes at Chiesa in Valmalenco. Thankfully Caspoggio, the second skiing resort in Valmalenco, let us stay.
by Luca Ferrario
17th Pierra Menta
1 Ducognon ValÃ©rie - Oggeri Delphine (FRA)
2 Favre Corinne ToÃ¯go - Carole (FRA)
3 Bourillon Nathalie - Lathuraz VÃ©ronique (FRA)
4 Champange Severine - Vaudey Muriel (FRA)
5 Roca Rodriguez Emma Bes Ginesta Cristina (CAT)
6 Guet Sandrine Gachet Laetitia (FRA)
7 Pedone Elena - Morotti Maria Rosa (ITA)
8 Bonnet Laure - Darragon Laurence (FRA)
1 Murada Ivan - Boscacci Graziano (ITA)
2 Brosse StÃ©phane - Gignoux Pierre (FRA)
3 Fontana Luciano - Negroni Luca (ITA)
4 Meilleur Vincent - Tomio CÃ©dric (FRA)
5 Blanc Bertrand - Champange Cyril (FRA)
6 Sbalby Tony - Blanc Patrick (FRA)
7 Pellissier Jean - Nagele Olivier (ITA)
8 Leitner Mizoslav - Svatojansky Peter (SLK)
9 Fabre Laurent - Pasteur Olivier (FRA)
10 Innerkofler Eugen - Molin Ivano (ITA)
11 Blanc Emmanuel - Gachet GrÃ©gory (FRA)
12 Hornegger Martin - Stock Markus (AUT)
13 Gachet RenÃ© - Rassat Patrick (FRA)
14 Dorfmann Manfred - Santin Oswald (ITA)
15 Oudard Olivier - Gontharet Gilles (FRA)