Hello, on August 15th 2012, you’ll be organizing the Ecomaratona della Val d’Arda. Can you tell us where it is located?
The Ecomaratona of Val d’Arda is an “In line race”, it means that departure and arrival are in two different places: departure will be in Morfasso, a beautiful village in the Apennine mountain, in the province of Piacenza. The arrival is in Casali, a very small village up in mountain, at 850 m above sea level.
How old is the race and why was it created in the first place?
This year will be the 5th edition.
What kind of route have you set up for the runners? How would you describe it?
This race is called Ecomaratona because the route is mainly "natural”, it means running on trails, in forest, small percentage of asphalt in full trail running spirit.
How many runners do you expect on Wednesday morning? What type of runners do you plan to attract?
We started around 100 athletes in the first edition and we grew to 170 last year, we hope to be 200 this one.
Do you organize other races during the Weekend? If so, on what distances?
Yes, in the same day we have a non-competitive event with 4 distances: 5, 10, 20 and 25 km.
This event has been organized in this place for more than 30 years; we have in average around 500 participants.
At that time of the year, what kind of weather can we expect?
At August 15th be expect a sunny day, but as the route reaches the height of 1350 m, we require the participants to equipped for bad weather as well.
Have you planned festivities around the marathon?
A so-called “Pasta Party” with music and entertainment will take place in Casali at the arrival of the Marathon.
The race finished, what advice would you give a runner who has never been to Casali before? A good restaurant, a fancy sightseeing?
After the race, the best activity in Casali is relaxing and enjoy our typical food. Maybe the following day, some nice places around are worth a visit, like Bardi with the famous Castle or the wonderful medieval bourg of Castell’Arquato.
In a single sentence, what would you tell the readers of ahotu Marathons to make them register for the Ecomaratona della Val d’Arda?
15th of August in Italy is the most classic Holiday; our marathon is a perfect opportunity to stay one day in the nature. Friends and family can enjoy the non-competitive races and then wait for the arrival of their athletes. Last but not least, at the arrival we have a big party area, excellent food (limited to 500 participants).
Interview with Armando Rigolli. Armando is 53 and has been running for 30 years. He used to be a road runner, but changed to trails. His longest race so far has been the Ridgeway Challenge in 2009 and this year he’ll enter the UTMB for the first time.