As the coronavirus continues to wreak havoc on the world at large, uncertainties surrounding the virus has forced yet another major event to push back their date by a year. The 2021 Alpine skiing World Championships, set to take place in Cortina d’Ampezzo in Italy, was determined by the Italian winter sports federation unsafe for the athletes and general public attending the event. If approved, the event will be moved to China for March 2022.
Cortina d’Ampezzo, referred to as the Queen of the Dolomites located in northern Italy, was prepared to host the Championships February 8th-21st 2021. The mayor of the resort, Gianpietro Ghedina, commented “the risks would be a lot if the epidemic should restart in the autumn. Cortina deserves this international sports event and wants to host it in the best possible conditions.” Despite years of planning and excitement surrounding the upcoming event, with Italy being one of the hardest-hit countries in the world by the pandemic, the difficult decision made by the president of the Italian Winter Sports Federation (FISI) will ultimately be the smartest.
While postponing the championships is a major loss, it is a better option than canceling. According to FISI, if canceled, it would result in a $30 million loss. The president of the Italian Federation, Flavio Roda, stated “postponing the event would allow us to put forth the best in terms of tradition and organization no the path toward Milan-Cortina 2026.” The Italian Federation suggested the proposal during a FIS board meeting and a final decision is expected on July 1st.