Ampezzano on Friday makes his debut in Austria in the Skeleton World Cup. “I’m finally fine, it will be a tour de force”
Mattia Gaspari’s Olympic appeal kicks off from Igls. The Skeleton World Cup will start on Friday from the town near Innsbruck and the Ampezzano delle Fiamme Azzurre is ready. With him, on the Austrian gut, there will be three other Azzurri, all three from Piedmont: Amedeo Bagnis, Valentina Margaglio (with whom Mattia won the bronze in the team competition at the Altenberg World Championships in 2020) and Alessia Crippa.
The second round of the Cup will also take place in Innsbruck, on November 26, while the other appointments are scheduled in Altenberg (Germany), Winterberg (Germany), again in Altenberg, then Sigulda (Latvia), again Winterberg before closing the circuit. in mid-January in Sankt Moritz (Switzerland). Then it will be Olympics.
There will be time until the third week of January to formalize the national selections for Beijing. “We start with two races in Igls, a track that is not too favorable to me, because the thrust is very important”, begins the athlete from Cortina. «These two Austrian stages will still serve me to regain confidence in the racing atmosphere and to improve the setup of the vehicle. After the two Austrian events there will be Altenberg, a more technical track, and there I should show something better ».
This is Olympic season.
“It’s starting much better than the last one, the one four years ago. In October 2017 I was struggling with an Achilles tendon injury, a problem that made me not only miss the Pyeongchang Games, but also the 2018-2019 season ».
And that has “held you back” even in subsequent ones. How are you now?
«The preparation went well, I didn’t have any setbacks. It was important to be able to train without hassle and I think I did it enough ».
Yeah, the training of the past few months. You have traveled half the world in the last few months.
“We’ve been away from home quite a while, actually. Starting from the second half of September we spent a week in Russia, in Sochi, then twenty days in Beijing, then three days in Innsbruck, then a week in Winterberg and one in Altenberg. We are now here in Igls and we will not be going home within a month. It’s a nice tour de force but we are in the Olympic season and it fits ».
How did you find the Olympic track?
“The three weeks in China were a good test; we tried and tested the track, making over forty descents. It is a very long track, one kilometer and 600 meters. I like. It is a track with a high average speed, if you make a mistake you pay a lot more than other tracks. To do well it will be necessary to do four constant heats ».
Did you also work a lot for the setup of the vehicle?
«Already last year I worked a lot on it. Let’s say that the past season helped me to prepare this also from the point of view of materials. I have put together a lot of evidence and data ».
Let’s take a look at the Italian skeleton. There seems to be a growing movement.
“No doubt it is. It is a movement that is being reborn and growing. Just think that this year the selections were made to go to the European Cup, something that hadn’t happened for some time ».