By Teemu Virtanen
The anniversary season of the Visma Ski Classics Pro Tour, Season X, starts this Friday when Pro Team Tempo takes place. The 15 km race will be done on a 5 km lap, and the Pro Teams start in a threeute interval. The finishing time is taken from the third best male skier of the team, and each team’s female skier(s) start their pursuit based on the time difference achieved from the men’s race.
This particular race is a perfect platform for all 35 Pro Teams to present their athletes, racing suits and team tactics. The Pro Team Tempo is followed by the Livigno Prologue, a 35 km mass-start race, where Pro Skiers fight for normal championship bib points. The sprint and climb competitions in the Prologue race grant 50% of the normal points.
First, the Prologue course uses the same 5 km lap as on the Fridays´ Pro Team Tempo three times, with a Sprint on the second and third loop (10 km / 15 km). Then, the same lap but with an extra hill section added, is skied three times with a Climb on the fourth and fifth lap (21 km / 28 km). For Season X, the course is prolonged with one lap and the prize money is also introduced for both Prologue races. There is also a new 2 km start loop for the race to allow skiers to be spread out before embarking on the normal course.
The prologue events are not open for the public, but recreational skiers have their chance to race on Saturday when the skating event Sgambeda takes place. While participating in that race, skiers can drop by at the Visma Ski Classics trailer and meet their favorite Pro Skiers as they are being interviewed and photographed on their day off.
For Friday, the day of the Pro Team Tempo, the weather forecast promises cold conditions, - 4 C, partially cloudy, light breeze, 2 m/s, from west and 0.5 mm precipitation. For Sunday, the Livigno Prologue, the current forecast predicts heavy snow, temperature around -3 C, light breeze, 3 m/s from south-southeast and 5 mm precipitation.
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