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Ski Classics: “Sustainability and minimizing travel is the key in the calendar”

The Ski Classics Season XV calendar was presented at the end of May. Here, Ski Classics CEO David Nilsson talks about the ideas behind the program: “Sustainability, creating flexible logistical solutions for the teams, and minimizing travel are keys to our work,” says Nilsson.

Photo: Manzoni/NordicFocus

Pro Team athletes during Summit 2 Senja, the final event of Ski Classics Season XIV.

December 9, 2023, marks the start of the winter’s Ski Classics season at Bad Gastein, Austria, Austria. Four competitions await in the following nine days as a kick-off to Ski Classics Season XV. Just over four months later, the Pro Tour circuit ends with Janteloppet in central Norway.

Why does the calendar look like this?

“We have a very clear idea when working with our calendar. The plan is to start in southern Europe in December and then work our way north,” says David Nilsson, CEO Ski Classics.

What is the reason for this positioning?

“There are several reasons for this. Firstly, it is about harming the environment as little as possible with travel. Sustainability is key in everything we do. It is also about saving costs for the teams. By taking us north step by step, for example, the vehicles that the teams use can remain in southern Europe in December and January before the Tour rolls towards Scandinavia from the second half of February until our Grand Finale in Hafjell on April 13,” says Nilsson and adds:

“We have also made an active choice to start our season a bit into December and then continue into April. Why struggle to get races on short loops and artificial snow in November/December when we can have sun and perfect conditions on natural snow in April? This is an important part of our sustainability work,” says Nilsson.

The calendar for the coming season offers some changes compared to last season:

“We want some dynamism in the calendar. And just like with the Tour de France, they don’t have the Alpe d’Huez stage every year, so we think the same way. We want some variety while at the same time having our four Grand Classics races (Marcialonga, Jizerská50, Vasaloppet, and Birkebeinerrennet) which have been on the program all seasons. For the coming season, we will increase from 14 to 15 events, but what we are working on the most is looking at the number of event weekends. There we expand from ten to eleven. And it is most advantageous both financially and logistically with the double weekends (competition Saturday and Sunday). But it must also not be too tough for the skiers, so it is important that we make careful balances,” concludes David Nilsson.

Ski Classics Pro Tour Season XV (2023/2024)

  • Event 1: December 9, 2023 – Bad Gastein PTT, Austria, 15km
  • Event 2: December 10, 2023 – Bad Gastein Criterium, Austria, 35km
  • Event 3: December 16, 2023 – La Venosta Criterium, Italy, 35km 
  • Event 4: December 17, 2023 – La Venosta ITT, Italy, 10km
  • Event 5: January 13, 2024 – Pustertaler Ski Marathon, Italy, 62km
  • Event 6: January 20, 2024 – Engadin La Diagonela, Switzerland, 55km
  • Event 7: January 28, 2024 – Marcialonga, Italy, 70km
  • Event 8: February 11, 2024 – Jizerská50, Czech Republic, 50km
  • Event 9: February 17, 2024 – Grönklitt Classic, Sweden, 50km
  • Event 10: February 18, 2024 – Grönklitt ITT, Sweden, 12km
  • Event 11: March 3, 2024 – Vasaloppet, Sweden, 90km
  • Event 12: March 16, 2024 – Birkebeinerrennet, Norway, 54km
  • Event 13: April 6, 2024 – Reistadløpet, Norway, 50km
  • Event 14: April 7, 2024 – Summit 2 Senja, Norway, 60km
  • Event 15: April 13, 2024 – Ski Classics Grand Finale – Janteloppet, Norway, 100km

For more updates and information about the Ski Classics Pro Tour, make sure to visit skiclassics.com.

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Photo: Reichert/NordicFocus
Photo: Reichert/NordicFocus

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