Planica 7 – More than just a final
The season 2017/2018 has been a long one, with lots of highlights. The Four Hills Tournament, Ski Flying World Championships, WillingenFive, the Olympic Games and the RawAir, which will start on Friday, were the route of the athletes, starting in Mid-November and ending at end of March. And now, for the traditional season final in Planica, there is a new thing, coming on top: Planica 7. Skijumpinghills.com explains, what this is about.“Planica Planica, snežena kraljica“ – is the beautiful first line of the anthem of Slavko Avsenik. But, this time, the snow queen is not only seducing with her beautiful landscape, frenetic fans, amazing atmosphere and one of the most beautiful and impressive ski jumping hills of this world. The athletes will be tempted by the last, exhausting, sportive challenge of the winter and, for the first time ever, with an own small event, Planica 7.
You have to admit, its regulations have a lot connections to the WillingenFive. But, it also has some attraction to add some sportive spirit on top of the celebration of the end of winter, including the traditional team party on Saturday, after the team competition. The Organisation Committee of Planica (OC Planica) installed the Planica 7 in accordance with the International Ski Federation (FIS). The winner of this event will receive a prize of 20,000 Swiss Francs. A nice sum on top of the regular prize money for the World Cup competitions.
As usual, the final weekend of the season, consists of the qualification on Thursday, an individual event on Friday, the team competition on Saturday and the final individual on Sunday. All these seven rounds of competition, if they all can take place, are the essential for the ranking of Planica 7. Which means, that, like in the RawAir, every athlete has to aim for most possible points, even also in the team competition, since the rounds of that competition also count for the ranking.
Which is one of the weaknesses of this event. If there is an athlete from a nation, which has a team, which does not reach the second round of that competition or does not even have four jumpers to build up a team for that competition, does not have a realistic chance to win this competition. The same goes for the ski flying specialists, who perform very well in Planica, but cannot participate in the final competition on Sunday, because only the best 30 will be allowed to start there, since their position in the overall World Cup standings is not good enough. The daily special prize will most likely be a cold comfort for these athletes.
At least, the initiators of Planica 7 included a “security rule” in the regulations of the event: It will only come to a special ranking, if at last four of the seven planned competition rounds will be held. This is a goal which, statistically, should be reached, since almost all planned rounds during the past years, took place. The more upcoming ideas, to bring some special flavor into the all-time same World Cup calendar, are surely a good sign for the sport. But, it is also about the way how you bring in some variety could be carried out a little smarter. Of course, the athletes will like the idea of the Planica 7. But, you should be allowed to ask, if such an event has to be held on the very final weekend, which is eventually hard as well, of a long, intense and tough season.
Ski Jumps:Planica (Letalnica)
|Invitation - FIS World Cup Final Planica 2018