"Short and painful but for a good purpose":  At the "HOCHKÖNIG in MOTION Charity SPRINT", everyone will be able to show us just what their legs are made of!

In the Prologue, the 16 fastest finishers will qualify for the main race, which will be held immediately after the elimination heats are over.

On the night ski slope, which is located right by the Event Arena, the starters – who will be outfitted with different light identification markers – are constantly within eyeshot of the spectators.
During the short, sharp heats, the crowd will be on the verge of boiling over with excitement, pushing the starters to perform to their max.

Andi Ringhofer about these new sprint races:
"Because of my advanced age – at least for a top-flight athlete – you won’t normally find me at short, sharp sprint events such as these.
But the Night Sprint in Maria Alm attracts me because of just how close you are to the crowds, plus I really like the new format and the KO system. Especially when you already have 4-5 heats in your legs, it’ll quickly become clear who got into early shape for the new race season."

Our equipment expert, Hans, from INTERSPORT Maria Alm recommends:

Skis:
well-, but not freshly waxed skis are ideal. On unwaxed skis, it’s sometimes difficult to remove the skins, while on freshly waxed skis, on the other hand, the skins often come loose on their own.

Poles:
Regular telescopic ski-touring poles aren’t necessarily the best for this event.  When you put too much strain on the pole, the bushing can begin to slip and you end up with a pole that’s too short. And that’s bothersome. The ideal is a short cross-country pole with a good, sharp point that “bites” into the slop well.

Boots:
Ski-touring boots are definitely the most sensitive piece of your equipment, since they come in direct contact with the athlete. Boots that have been well worn-in are worth their weight in gold. Normally you buy ski-touring boots that are a little bigger than regular boots, but you don’t want to be “floating” around in them either.

Climbing Skins:
As far as adhesive skins, I’d advise making sure that the adhesive holds well, but it still needs to release easily from the ski too. Well warn-in skins that you trust are what it’s all about. And it never hurts to have a second spare pair of skins just in case.
Depending on snow conditions, you should also wax the skins. There are special waxes for the job, but a normal, soft ski wax will also do the trick.

Clothing:
Good lightweight ski-touring clothes that “breathe” and wick sweat away from you. Even with temperatures below zero, you generally don’t have to worry about hypothermia, since the intense effort of the climb will  quickly get you working up a sweat. And the ride back to the valley takes no time at all. But it’s important that you slip on warm clothing right after crossing the finish line and then jump in a hot shower as soon as possible.

Accessories:

Glasses:
especially if there’s precipitation, it’s important to bring along some glasses that work well. In extreme cases, ski goggles/glasses might serve you well. Important: the glasses should have clear lenses.

Headlight:
the race slopes are very well lit and you will need very little light on the ascent. There will also be emergency back-up lighting.  If you want to be absolutely sure, bring along your own headlight – it will minimize any risk of a fall.

Helmet:
There isn’t much to discuss about this topic since safety helmets are compulsory for this event!  In warmer temperatures, a bicycle helmet might actually be the best choice.

Drinks:
Since there’s a refreshment station at the turn-around point, dehydration shouldn’t even be an issue. But if you know your body well and it needs lots of liquids during sporting activities, then make sure you bring along a bottle with a high-quality mineral drink.