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Telemarkers and Those Who Would like to Give It A Go - Brilliant Event Jan 2020

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hello All,

I hope, as we approach midsummer day and the days will be getting shorter in less than a month, many are thinking about next winter. So I thought I'd let all telemarkers, and anyone thinking of giving it a go, know about the GB Telemark Training and National Championships.

The event is formally known as Exercise Telemark Titan 2020 and is run by the Army Telemark Ski Association (ATSA) but is also open to civilians. Takes place in Pralognan la Vanoise, next to 3 Valleys, 11-23 Jan 2020. This will be the fourth year in PLV and up to 150 telemarkers are easily catered for. Last year the numbers dropped to around 100 Royal Navy, Royal Marines, Army and civilians (30 ish), mainly due to military commitments etc, so there is ample scope for us civilians to get involved and keep up numbers. For some reason the RAF Telemarkers do their own thing somewhere else.

Briefly, the event consists of a weeks instruction for all levels from alpine skiers wishing to learn telemark, to training the GB World Cup Squad and those endeavouring to get into the squad. The instruction is first class and depending on numbers may be just french instructors or include well know english instructors, eg Telemark Tracks from Val d'Isere. Daily instruction is 0900 - 1630 with around 1 - 11/2 hours for lunch. Group size is approx 6, last year my group of all mountain skiers was 4 and with a brilliant French telemark WC skier, although novice classes may be a little larger. For the non serious GB squad telemarkers, the emphasis is on being or becoming an all mountain telemarker. So conditions permitting, everything from on piste to deep powder to moguls is covered. Race instruction is not the main activity, but some will include round the gates, jumping and skating. It is actually quite fun. Adjustable poles that extend to around 1m 50cm are a good idea for skating!

A day off in the middle gives the chance to recover, recuperate and relax - but a group of us went touring up into the mountains. A really lovely but tiring day.

Then there are a few days of racing. For novices, a few development races and the better ones do get into the GB Telemark Championships. The GB Championships are for all and from that the GB World Cup team is selected. Finally, a Mountain Race. This involves skinning up a hill and skiing down, repeated for 3 laps. Either in 1 lap relay teams, or as a solo.
Some instruction continues during the racing days for novices.
The gate racing is surprisingly fun and you don't need a catsuit! Last year Ed Silva and I won Gold in the GB Championship Team Classic event - so anyone at any age has a chance of a gong. We did also have two much younger hotshots in our team - Ed's son Ben and Harry Fletcher. It also helped that one of our rival team crashed out. But as they say, to finish first - first you have to finish.

The event is hosted in the delightful small friendly scenic resort of Pralognan la Vanoise, south east of Moutiers and next valley to the east of Courcheval.
Full board accomodation is in the Hotel Vacanciel, large buffets for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and short walk to the lifts. Large free open car parking area - shovel and snow chains are a good idea. Travel out is an own arrangement and the military do it by numbers! For us civilians, I have set up a Whatsapp group so that we can perhaps coordinate travel better or arrange sharing etc.

Last year the cost for civilians was £900 - full board, instruction, lift pass and race fees. And the Championship Secretary is trying to keep to the same for this year.

Kit can be hired for the event.

The initial details will be published in June, with confirmed details in the autumn.

It is tremendous fun and a terrific opportunity to meet telemarkers at all levels and ages.

So if you have ever thought how elegant those telemarkers look and have wanted to have a try, this is the event to go to. Even if you return to Alpine (still with training heel!), a week or so of telemarking will improve your balance and coordination enormously. See this article - www.thetimes.co.uk/article/why-telemark-skiing-is-making-a-comeback-in-austria-338wf2pcs

Even more important are children. If you have fearless, good confident alpine skiing kids, then this is the place for them to try telemark, be trained and assessed for the GB World Cup Development Squad, perhaps ending up in Telemark World Cup races. Last event there were a few young being chaperoned by their parents.

And it is a great way of supporting our Armed Forces and ensuring the event has enough numbers to keep the discounted rates etc.

Any questions and I can email last year's documents, please pm me.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Hi Colin great piece, I hope you are on some kind of commission. Joking aside you describe something that sounds like alot of fun!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Rogerdodger, yes it is serious fun. No commission unfortunately, but a vested interest in getting numbers up so that it continues.
You won't get better skiing value than this.
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You need to Login to know who's really who.
Just an update - cost kept to same as last year - £900. Transfers to from GVA will be available but not included.

Let's have a good turnout or Snowheads??????
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
As Colin says it is brilliant. The quality of the tuition is outstanding and covers all levels from first time telemarkers through to World Cup standard. The event also ties in with one of the World Cup races, so in 2019 a couple of the Telemark Titan participants stayed for the World Cup races and competed.

The coaches are mostly French and local to the area, travelling from Champagny, Courchevel, Meribel, Bourg etc. For them it is a treat as they are ESF instructors- who love to telemark, but who almost never get to teach telemark or even better get paid to telemark. Instructors have included at least one of the Lau brothers (World Cup / French champion) as well as others who have competed and won a variety of races including the Derby de la Meije.

The coaches themselves have training in how to teach Brits to telemark by Seb Mansart the GB telemark team coach. They do it very well indeed- and make it fun.

The resort is small but perfectly formed with a couple of great mountain restaurants. The pistes were immaculately prepared in 2019 and we had some beautiful snow.

As Colin says the hotel provides unlimited food (and wine at dinner) which is hearty, lots of salad, a decent choice, raclette night etc, also a selection of cheeses- it is France after all. The rooms are clean, basic and get a tidy / clean once mid week.

The company is a highlight, a mixture of keen telemarkers, aspiring telemarkers, ski fanatics, service men and women mostly from the Navy / Marines with a mix from the Army. They provide all the logistics and do an excellent job. I'm impressed by the meetings. Apres ski is relaxed. Bowling was fun, the hotel bar is very good value (a coffee is a couple of euros, a beer not much more), a happy hour is likely, the hotel provides 'French entertainments'.

The only tricky bit is transport to and from GVA. Driving is no problem as it is just past Champagny. There are buses via Bourg or a private transfer.

If you are telecurious- go.

If you are telesexual- go.

If your kids might be in the process of transitioning from Alpine to tele- or think they might- send / take them. Under 18's need a chaperone, ideally a parent.
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Great Ed. And oh, yes - University OTCs pitch up. Exeter is particularly strong with everyone from the CO and his wife to first year students. So, Uni OTCs have a think and send a team. I understand that the students even get paid!!
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Bump, not much time to sign up.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Well done Ed.

Snow is falling in Pralo. Can't wait.
Off to Hintertux for Freeheeler Opening Event end November, then onto Tignes for a couple of weeks.

But, all those who wish to ski with fabulous style and as an art form, telemark is the way to go.
Just take the plunge - you know you can do it!!!
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
see you there !!
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@limegreen1, great to hear. Is that both Hintertux and Pralo??
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Booking for TT20 closes end of next week - 15 Nov.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@colinstone, living the dream!
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