Seeing racers whizz through the Tofana schuss at top speed might be the signature image of the snowboarding world championships.

Wedged in between 2 huge walls of rock near the top of the womens downhill course, the schuss, or chute, hurtles skiers down the mountain at more than 130 kph (80 miles per hour).

Its where one decreased or incorrect relocation can indicate the difference in between a gold medal and a horrific crash.

The schuss is likewise a huge part of an endless variety of incredible scenery in Cortina d’Ampezzo, the resort called the Queen of the Italian Dolomites.

The natural appeal of Cortina will be of unique value at these championships, with organizers hoping that the images from the slopes beamed around the globe to TELEVISION audiences will make up for the lack of fans in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.

After last years World Cup finals in Cortina were wiped out because of the spread of COVID-19, organizers asked the International Ski Federation to postpone the worlds to 2022. But the request was denied since that would have put the competition too near to next years Beijing Olympics.

We didnt have an option, arranging committee president Alessandro Benetton stated. Up in the mountains we state, Youve got to construct the fire with the wood that you have. Were looking at the glass as half-full. Were hoping its a big media occasion.

As part of an across the country ban on fans at sports occasions in Italy, no spectators will be permitted in Cortina when the champions open Monday with the womens integrated race.

Sure, we will be lacking some atmosphere, Benetton stated. But were hoping that will be compensated by the TV protection comparable to the way Cortina was put on the map by the 1956 Olympics.


As part of a strict anti-virus protocol, medals will awarded to athletes on the slopes in the surface location directly after races end as opposed to at a medal plaza in town throughout the evening based on custom.

Besides continuous screening for the coronavirus for everyone in participation, color-coded bubbles have been established to keep different groups apart: a red bubble for groups (professional athletes, coaches, group doctors, physical therapists, ski men) and other race workers; a blue bubble for organizational personnel, volunteers and police personnel; a yellow bubble for the media; and a green bubble for visitors and dignitaries.

Two-time Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin will be a top competitor in the opening occasion, the womens combined. Former total World Cup champ Lara Gut-Behrami has actually won 4 straight World Cup super-G races and will be an overwhelming favorite for that race on Day 2. The mens super-G will also be contested Tuesday with Olympic champ Matthias Mayer among the competitors.

The signature downhills will be held on the middle weekend, with American racer Breezy Johnson amongst the contenders for the womens title on Feb. 13 and Mayer taking on Swiss competing Beat Feuz for the desirable mens gold medal a day later.

Italian teammates Marta Bassino and Federica Brignone are aiming for glory on home snow in the womens huge slalom, with total World Cup leader Petra Vlhov wanting to safeguard her GS title from 2019. Shiffrin will then choose a fifth straight slalom world title.


Numerous big names will be missing because of injury.

Olympic champ Sofia Goggia broke her best knee in a fall last weekend a destructive way to end her run of 4 straight triumphes in World Cup downhills.Also last month, protecting overall World Cup champion Aleksander Aamodt Kilde tore ligaments in his best knee in a crash.


The champions will be a huge trial run for the 2026 Milan-Cortina Olympics.

A brand-new guys speed course will be used for the very first time. It’s called Vertigine, which equates as vertigo.

The slalom races will be objected to on the high Drusci A piste, which was where Austrian great Toni Sailer won one of his three gold medals at the 1956 Olympics.


More AP sports: and


Andrew Dampf is at