Only 121 days are left until the start of the fifth edition of the Viessmann FIS Tour de Ski performance by Craft Sportswear that will take place from 31st December 2010 to 9th January 2011. Last week, the main FIS organizing team involved with the FIS Tour de Ski visited the four Tour host venues Oberhof, Oberstdorf (both GER), Toblach and Val di Fiemme (both ITA).
Oberhof. The site inspections started in Oberhof which is a Tour host venue already for the third time. The inspection group spent intense hours on the plans for the Tour de Ski kick-off weekend which will again commence with a team presentation in downtown Oberhof on 30th December 2010.
Oberstdorf is back on the Tour calendar after being part of the inaugural Tour edition. The experienced staff presented their organizing structure; marketing plans and the well-known courses from the first Tour edition.
Toblach. Moving on to Toblach, the Tour schedule foresees a sprint race followed by a race with a start and finish in different locations. On 6th January 2011, the male athletes will race again from Cortina d'Ampezzo to Toblach as last year, while the ladies course will change and they will race on a 3 x 5 km course in Toblach. Ideal conditions are provided by the newly-finished stadium building also used for touristic needs during the season (see detail here).
In Val di Fiemme, the focus of discussions was on logistical aspects, fan entertainment and ensuring high quality TV coverage by building upon the coverage seen last season. As a novelty, Val di Fiemme will host a public uphill race on the final climb.
"I'm very satisfied with the progress for the 5th Tour and happy to have Oberstdorf back on the calendar. This year's Tour de Ski promises us a better logistical flow due to the compact placement of the Tour venues and the experienced organizers. With these skilled OCs, I believe we can again take a big step forward and increase the value for all stakeholders while attracting more fans on site and in front of TV," stated Jürg Capol, FIS Race Director Cross-Country."As a special benefit, Val di Fiemme will organize a public competition up Alpe Cermis on the same day as the top athletes will compete. I am sure that this will help the host venue of the 2013 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships deliver another amazing Cross-Country festival and contribute additional flavor to the event."