Tension mounts on the racecourse
While the Ganslern slope will receive increased attention from Tuesday, the focus of our Piste Safety Team was on the Streif on Monday. Precision work, above all, is the name of the game.
Not only are the Kitzbühel Races a tense affair, but also the tarpaulins and nets. Work on their installation and anchoring continues unabated. A challenging undertaking, especially at sub-zero temperatures of minus 10 - as was the case Monday morning. This particular morning was dedicated to installing the Steilhang exit and Seidlalm sections. What is the most important factor for this adroit working team? Alexander Reicht explains: "It is imperative that the nets are tensioned correctly - not too tight and not too loose - which provides optimum cushioning for any impact.
While a 6.5-metre-high tower is being erected at Oberhausberg for one of the 40 ORF cameras, the steep Hausberg Traverse is undergoing intensive work. A snow groomer works the freshly made snow into the slope, before water work begins to compact the top snow layer. Only the most experienced piste machine drivers from the Bergbahn AG Kitzbühel Cable Car Co. are brought on board for this critical phase. The Organizing Committee’s seasoned Piste Manager, Walter Gandler reassures: "It may look tricky. But we all work together and ensure that it is done properly.
Toni Ehrensperger has already surveyed the Hahnenkamm many times over. This Monday he is working in the Finish Zone and surveying the area where a screen will be set up using a GPS handheld device. Nothing escapes his meticulous measurement data: "There are fewer video walls this year, but the fence-line, technical shafts, winch anchors, anchor points for snow groomers, the Red Bull arch and so on remain the same as at previous races.”