For the first time in Italy the European Orienteering Sprint Championships

5 Dec 2022

For the first time in Italy the European Orienteering Sprint Championships

From the 1st to the 8th October 2023 orienteers from all over the world will compete, for European titles, together with promotional challenges and special initiatives to encourage diffusion of orienteering and the enhancement of the local tourism offer on the international scene

The provinces of Trento, Verona and Vicenza together to celebrate an absolute first time for Italy, which will turn into a great moment of celebration for the continental orienteering movement and beyond. From 1st to 8th October 2023, over 2,000 athletes from 35 nations, the majority of whom from central and northern Europe, will be expected at the EOC-European Orienteering Championships, the Sprint Championships of the discipline with map and compass, which will coincide with the World Cup finals.

The innovative program of races will challenge the best athletes at an international level, but also those who want to test themselves driven solely by their passion or to simply discover the sport of the woods, which for this occasion, will land in the villages of the Italian peninsula. The kermesse will be hosted there thanks to the commitment of the FISO-Italian Federation of Orienteering and of PWT Italia on assignment by the IOF-International Orienteering Federation. Due to its resonance, the event has already received the patronage of the Veneto Regional Council, the Province of Vicenza and the Autonomous Province of Trento.

The European Championships will begin on Sunday 1 October in Verona: the streets and districts of the city will outline a real map where everyone will be able to explore its unique historical and architectural identity through fun activities. The fulcrum of the event is the itinerant Orienteering Arena which, between games, and treasure hunts finalized for the enhancement of local excellence; For those who want to experience the excitement of a competition, promotional challenges of the EOC Tour will also be scheduled: in the Municipalities of Verona (October 1st), Peschiera del Garda (October 2nd), Malcesine near Monte Baldo (October 3rd), Soave (October 4), Sega di Ala-Trento (October 5), Arco and Riva del Garda (October 6). For information

Breathtaking beginning for the challenges of the pros in the enchanting medieval village of Soave, in the province of Verona, on the 4th October with the Sprint Relay, which will decide the strongest teams of the Old Continent. The king and queen of the European orienteering over the Sprint distance will instead be crowned on the 6th October in Trentino, in Arco and Riva del Garda historic centers, where the qualifications and finals will take place respectively. Finally, on the 8th October the individual Sprint knock-out titles will be awarded in the heart of Vicenza, which will welcome the discipline again nine years after the 2014 World Championships on the plateaus of Asiago and Lavarone. All distances will also be valid as the 2023 World Cup third and final stage. The orienteering community will also be able to count, as a point of reference, in the event center located in the magnificent scenery of Lake Garda in Peschiera del Garda.

The Championships will not only leave a legacy of absolutely sustainable sports facilities, but will also be the driving force of a considerable touristic return related to the presence of the athletes and their respective companions. In fact, a total of 14,000 tourist presences are expected, for the 7 nights considered, these will generate approximately 2 million euros of returns. As many as 8 nations will broadcast the EOC live on television, namely Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, France, Switzerland, Estonia, the Czech Republic, contributing to the promotion of the Italian territory.

“As an athlete who tried his hand at hockey in his youth – comments Roberto Ciambetti, President of the Veneto Regional Council – I have always appreciated the disciplines of the so-called minor sports, which are such only because they have less space in the mass media, from newspapers to television, but not for the commitment and skills that are put on the field. Even orienteering is one of those disciplines that fascinate and begins to have more and more practitioners and enthusiasts thanks to the diffusion in schools and school championships that gather more and more members every year. Veneto lends itself very well to this discipline: its cities, countryside, hills and mountain forests are perfect settings for running and orienteering competitions. In 2023 the European Championships, between Verona, Vicenza, Soave, will have the event center in Peschiera del Garda thus touching another pearl of our territory for a sport that knows how to combine physical effort, study, intelligence and intuition with the landscape, thus allowing athletes and practitioners not only to put themselves to the test, but also to enjoy the beauty of places and landscapes that are unique in the world”.

“The Vicenza area has a beautiful orienteering tradition – says Francesco Rucco, President of the Province of Vicenza – thanks to a territory suited to sport, which alternates between plains, hills and mountains. The Championships will arrive in October in the historic center of Vicenza and it will be a real pleasure to show the world, through the athletes, what Vicenza has to offer in terms of culture, architecture and art. The candidacy for Capital of Culture has allowed us to prepare a program of events that enrich an already extensive cultural heritage made up of palaces and villas, but also of alleys, arcades, bridges, small and large ‘details’ that make Vicenza a jewel to know and to discover. Also through sport, above all the one which, like orienteering, often leads to lesser-known and therefore even more suggestive corners”.

“Events like this have an undoubted sporting value – underlines Matteo Celebron, Councilor for Sport of the Municipality of Vicenza – but they are also an excellent vehicle from a tourist point of view, especially with the regions of Northern Europe where orienteering is widely practiced. The goal is to make sport a vehicle of culture, also offering athletes a cultural and tourist experience and making them ambassadors of the beauties of Vicenza in the world”.

“Trentino – declares Roberto Failoni, Councilor for Crafts, Commerce, Promotion, Sport and Tourism of the Autonomous Province of Trento – is proud to host this sporting event of international importance, confirming the bond that exists between our territory and sport, especially outdoors. For the athletes involved, for their companions and for the enthusiasts who will follow the event, it will be an opportunity to appreciate the beauty of an area, that of Garda, particularly suited for hospitality and competitive practice. The period chosen for the event also helps to strengthen the commitment of the Trentino tourist system to invest in periods traditionally less characterized by large flows of visitors but which offer those who choose them a high quality holiday experience”.

This format will surprise – comments Gabriele Viale, PWT Italia General ManagerIt will combine the discovery of local excellence, tourism, entertainment, sport for all with the Orienteering Arena and solidarity with top-level competition”.