The route for the Zero-3000 Extreme Race has already been tested by some exceptional athletes as well as spokespeople for sponsor companies of the event, like former cyclist and excellent sealskin skier Andrea Peron, the several-time European and Italian mountaineer skiing champion Franco Nicolini with his son Federico, who together with Alessandro Follador represents some promising, new, young talent for the Italian National Mountaineer Skiing team; and Luca Dalla Venezia, a tremendously talented athlete who’s crazy about MTB and ski mountaineering.
Luca Dalla Venezia
Date Of Birth: 17/07/1978
Highlights: 3rd in the Italian MTB Championships (Prato, 1996); 5th in the Km Verticale Latemar race (Predazzo, 2004); has taken part in all the most important ski mountaineering competitions; (Once in the Pierra Menta, the Adamello and the Patrouille Des Glacieres, twice in the Sky-ski du Mont Blanc, 5 times in the Mezzalama, 6 times in the Sellaronda); he skied Chimborazo ( 6310 m, the highest mountain in Ecuador), Mount Tocllaraju (6034 m, Peru), the Vallunaraju peak (5800 m, Peru) and the Alpamayo peak (5.946 m, Peru).
“The Zero-3000 will be a very challenging race but at the same time it will be fascinating. Combining biking with backcountry skiing is a great idea. The ski mountaineering route goes up to 3300 metres and the mountaineer skiing part will last about 1 hour and 30 minutes for the strongest athletes. The route is quite particular. It starts off from Malga Ciapela with some stretches on a false rise up to Capanna Bill but then it spikes upward, with 2 walls not to be underestimated until Fedaia pass. From here, after a “rolling” cross over, which goes to Fedaia lake, some steep climbs will alternate with some more gentle tracts (so to speak) until the last 2800 metres more or less on the last slope under the cable lift. From here there will be 450 metres that will be devastating for everyone! However, the pure cyclists will suffer the most, since the gradients get seriously steep and the altitude change becomes a major influence. There will also be a significant optical illusion effect that occurs in the vicinity of the last cable lift station; to those who aren’t familiar with the tract it will seem like it’s close enough to touch; however it will still take 20 to 30 minutes to make it to the Dolomite peak.”
Date Of Birth: 14/08/1971
Highlights: 2nd place in the time trial test at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics; 1st place in the general classification in the Vuelta a Castilla y Leon (1996); 5th place in the World Road Cycling Championships in Lugano (1996); 1st place in the Italian Road Cycling Championship time trial test (2001); Trofeo Città di Borgomanero (2005).
“It will be a true test, especially for cyclists. More than 3 hours by bike, during which you have to be careful not to waste energy, to preserve your strength so you don’t get to the last kilometres with no gas in your tank and your legs shot before the final phase of the race on the mountaineer ski tract. For those hoping to defend themselves I would suggest staying hidden in the belly of the group and saving your legs by using the proper gear. The objective for pure cyclists will be not to run out of breath, because the altitude can really wreak havoc if you’re not used to it. The route is exceptional, from the hills of Asolo we’ll ride up through breathtaking scenery and charming little villages until we enter the Bellunese Dolomites National Park. I agree with the decision of the organising committee to provide assistance during the race with a technical escort made up of two flagship vehicles. This way if the riders have mechanical problems they can receive quick assistance and get back in the group as soon as possible. The 30 km/h speed limit until Cencenighe is a good idea and will allow the pure ski mountaineers to save some energy. From Cencenighe to Malga Ciapela the cyclists will have a chance to gain important ground to manage in the ski mountaineering part. Race strategy and energy resource management will be key elements that will make this race all the more interesting.”
Date Of Birth: 18/04/1983
Highlights: Member of the Italian National Mountaineer Ski team; 48/2011 Senior World Cup; 18th at the Individual Font Blanc Arcalis (Andorre, Senior World Cup, 2011); 24th in the Individual Tambre (Italy, Senior World Cup, 2011); 21st in Vertical race Font Blanc Arcalis (Andorre, Senior World Cup, 2012); 2nd at Vertical race Nevegal (Italy, Senior National Cup, 2011); 5th at Team Lagorai Cima d’Asta Valmalene (Italy, Senior National Cup, 2011); 5th in the Sellaronda (Italy, Senior National Cup, 2011); 5th at Transcavallo (Italy, Senior National Cup, 2011).
“I’m sure the Zero-3000 is going to be a very interesting competitive event. Arriving to the peak of the Queen of the Dolomites says a lot about the beauty of the race. The cycling segment should not be underestimated; there are many kilometres and the athletes will have to take as much nourishment as possible. For those of us who only train on skis in winter it’s going to be hard to find time to get on a bike and prepare our legs for this different technical movement. It’s a winning idea. To start from sea level and surpass three thousand metres with your own strength – this “ecological” vision of sports is really appealing. As for managing the race, each one of us will have to set their own pace without worrying too much about what the other participants are doing, otherwise, it’s going to be quite an ordeal to make it all the way up to Punta Rocca!”