Masters World Championships 2020
Cogne is a great place for ski racing. It’s hosted senior World Cup events in the past and, at 1 544 metres, it’s probably about as snow-sure as anywhere can be these days. Not only that but, if you remember, you invest £5 a year to be a BMCCSA member with the sole purpose of competing in the Masters World Championships so, if you don’t do so, your investment could go down as well as up!
Cogne is also fairly easy to get to, right up in the north-west of Italy in the Aosta Valley, a very well-known destination for British skiers, by public transport or by car and, whenever we’ve had MWCs in Italy, they’ve been great events (well, let’s put Folgaria aside for a moment). In terms of competition, as I constantly point out, the Masters is the highest-level event we can aspire to; open to all, but without all that tedious queuing of loppets. And if all that hasn’t convinced you, and you’re a young(ish) British lady, there are medals just waiting for you! Last but not least, Snowsport England Nordic Key Committee Chair and BMCCSA member Glennis Dore has (well, rents) a place there every year. What better recommendation can there be than that?
The town of Cogne (pop. 1 439; pop. March 2020 2 939 (est.))
Several airports serve Cogne: Turin at 144 km, Geneva at 167 km, Milan (Badly-Thought-Out) Malpensa at 207 km, Milan Linate at 230 km and Bergamo at 255 km.
The event organisers will provide shuttle buses timed to coincide with major international flights but, failing that, trains or buses will get you to Aosta at 27 km from Cogne. Car hire from the airports is a further option.
I’ve booked twin rooms already in the 3-star De La Tor hotel and the next-door Les Trompeurs hotel. Prices for the rooms are as follows:
– twin rooms at Les Trompeurs B&B: € 85 per person (with meals served at De La Tor hotel),
– twin rooms at De La Tor hotel: € 80 per person.
The prices above are half board. There is a further € 7 per person for the entire period as local tax.
Hotel De La Tor Hotel Les Trompeurs
I can hold these rooms until the 15th December and, after that, I will have to let them go. I’ve looked on the internet and there’s very little else available in Cogne, and the few places available are self-catering apartments. So, if you want to go, please book early! Normal BMCCSA principles apply: if you want a room on your own, you have to pay for it, but if you end up in a room on your own because we have an odd number of skiers, the cost of the unused bed is shared between everyone.
The official dates for the event are from Thursday 5th March until Saturday 14th March. The schedule is:
Thursday 5th March: free training, registration
Friday 6th March: free training, registration
Saturday 7th March: middle distance classic races (30, 15, 10 km depending on age)
Sunday 8th March: middle distance free technique races
Monday 9th March: short distance classic races (10/5 km) morning, free races afternoon
Tuesday 10th March: rest day with cultural events
Wednesday 11th March: relays
Thursday 12th March: long distance classic races (45, 30, 15 km)
Friday 13th March: long distance free technique races
Saturday 14th March: Departure.
I’ve chosen the 10 km track because it’s fairly representative, in terms of profile, of the other tracks. For this event, unusually, there will be a 7.5 km track (part of the 10 km) so, for example, the 15 km races for 60+ racers will be 2 x 7.5. If using the 10 km track, you do need to be careful after about 2 km, when the track exits the map – you might need your passport at this point.
Likely weather conditions
Average temperatures in March, over the last 50 years, suggest something between -5 and +3 oC. Typical total accumulated snow depths from October to May is about 3 metres, while the snow depth early in March is shown below and averages 0.84 metres.
There should be plenty of natural snow but, just in case, they are able to prepare a 16 km track using man-made snow, so plenty enough for the longest Masters race of 45 km.
Entries and deadlines
The entry form is on the general website, http://www.mwc-2020.com/ but, this time, you have just option, which is to enter via the Datasport platform (your entry will be sent to me to verify). As always, the entry fee is €200, irrespective of how many races you take part in. The deadline for entries is the 31st January.
Please remember that you can now enter any three races; you do not have to enter one of each distance. So if you’re a nutcase, and fancy one 30 km, the relay and two 45 km races on consecutive days, knock yourself out!
If you want any further details, please don’t hesitate to contact me. I hope that we will get a good-sized team to Cogne, a venue very familiar to many British skiers and an event held at a very good time towards the end of the season, with plenty of opportunity to train and prepare earlier in the season. The World Masters Association encourages us to send as big a team as we can, because they want people from outside the traditional cross-country nations. So, get your entry in soon, to prevent disappointment.