Corvara, 8 January 2019 – For just over two weeks the ice tower Eisturm Rabenstein has been open to the public. It has been a great success. Over the holiday period between Christmas and the New Year many ice climbers from the whole Alpine region made use of the opportunity of safe ice climbing in Val Passiria. And now Corvara is getting ready for two important competitions that have been taking place here with great success for many years.
Many farmers in Val Passiria have also firmly put the date of 20 January in their calendar weeks ago. Not surprising, because next Sunday is the date for the Psairer Bauernmeisterschaft championships. On that day, the “Haiziecher” hay pullers and the ice climbers battle it out against the clock and the opponent. The “Haiziecher”, the hay puller, pulls the “Haizuig”, the hay sledge, including binding with the “Hai Piirl”, the bale of hay. The over 200kg load is pulled across a distance of around 400 metres. The route includes two steep inclines and flat sections. At the foot of the ice tower the “Haiziecher” hands over to this partner, the ice climber, who now has to get to the top of the structure as fast as possible. When he has arrived at the top, the ice climber stops the time.
Two weeks later, on the first weekend in February, the Ice Climbing World Cup comes to Corvara for the seventh time. In addition to the faultless organization that is guaranteed by the club Eisturm Rabenstein, it is the ice climbing structure, which is probably the most beautiful and demanding artificial one in the world, that attracts the top athletes in this discipline.
The whole global elite comes to the World Cup in Corvara
In Corvara everyone is excited to find out how the recently crowned World Combined Champions will fare on Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd February. Maria Tolokonina won the women’s title as the most complete athlete – at the World Championships in Russia she won in both difficulty climbing (lead) and speed climbing (speed). Tolokonina’s strongest opponents are most likely to include her strong fellow Russians Valeriia Bogdan and Maryam Filippova. Marion Thomas from France, Shabnam Asadi from Iran or Enni Bertling from Finland are hoping to put the Russian “Armada” under pressure. The battle for the stage victory will also include the Korean top climbers Han Na Rai Song, who won last year, and Woonseon Shin, who has also been very high in the rankings in Corvara.
The current men’s World Combined Champion is Nikolai Kuzovlev. He is also a permanent visitor in Corvara, as is the rest of the ice climbing elite. Kuzovlev won gold in Moscow in mid-December ahead of his compatriot Nikita Glazyrin and Iranian Mohammadreza Safdarian – the defending champion in Corvara. The Persian athlete won surprisingly in January 2018 and made ice climbing history. There are also great expectations of the Tomilov brothers from Russia, who are likely to return to South Tyrol this year.
The many spectators in Corvara also enjoy an interesting supporting programme. Chair of the Organising Committee Reinhard Graf and his team from the club Eisturm Rabenstein are in the process of planning the final details. The ice tower remains open to the public on Tuesdays and Fridays from 7:00 pm to 10:30 pm, and over the weekend on Saturdays and Sundays from 1:30 pm to 7:00 pm.