SkiPass 2015 – The Italian Ski Show

SkiPass 2015 – The Italian Ski Show

SkiPass 2015

Like the annual pilgrimage to the London Ski show, Subzero Coaching went to pay homage to the Italian Ski Show; the SkiPass.
Here is a report of what we saw, heard and experienced.

The Italian ski show takes place just outside the city of Modena, just over an hour’s drive from Milan.
Generally the ski show takes place over the closest weekend to the national holiday of the 1st November, which means that people have an extra day to visit the show outside the weekend.
The location is the Modena Trade Centre, just off the Autostrada A1, that links the North of Italy with the South-East of the country. While the Trade Centre itself is appropriate to the size and the space required by the show, it should be noted, that the highway exit has been a serious pain in the past. The queue can take up to two hours, from the highway exit to the parking space.
The same issue arises again once you are out of your car and there is another queue to get your ticket..
This time, however, we are happy to say none of the above happened; this year, the show was extended to include the preceding Thursday as well as the Friday, and was open from 9.30 until 19.30. This means it’s possible to arrive on Friday lunchtime, avoid all the queues. Well done to the organisers.

The Italian ski show was organised in three indoor pavilions and one big outdoor area.
Pavilion A was dedicated to the big ski brands and resort promotion.
This year the majority of resort stands were Italian, with a big promo area reserved to the Emilia Romagna region (host of the event) and all its resorts on the Appennine Mountains. The best-known of which are Monte Cimone and Corno alle Scale.
The Dolomites was the other big name in this pavilion, with their main stand divided in multiple parts with a local representative from each resort in the area.
Beside the most popular towns, like Madonna di Campiglio and Cortina D’Ampezzo, the Dolomiti SuperSki deserves a mention. It is a group of lift companies that have connected with each others and now are linking a number of resorts, from different valleys, with amazing skiing. In numbers; a whopping 460 lifts spanning 2 regions of Italy for a total 1,200 km of slopes. This makes it the biggest ski area in Europe.
The foreign countries were also well represented; Switzerland, with a stand promoting Andermatt, for its freeride attitude and the new village that is rising up next to the old town centre, Austria’s Stubai Glacier, probably one of the best glaciers to go to, if mileage and good deals are the main drivers, and a very friendly stand from Georgia, promoting their new ski resorts at jaw droppingly low prices (15 euros a day skipass).

The big ski brands also had their stands in Pavilion A, giving a nice change of scenery to the visitors travelling from one resort stand to the other.
Völkl and the Dalbello group were present with a big raised stand, looking cool and slightly intimidating with an “stage” effect.
Elan displayed its products along with the other names within its brand; Alpina for helmets and Toko for the ski servicing products.
Head had a big show of materials, well-displayed and with a continuously buzzing stand filled with people.
The most interesting stand for us was definitely the Rossignol group, of which Dynastar and Lange are also part.
Lange has “gone big’ this time and beside the classic open area display with Dynastar, also created a reserved area for boot tests and boot fitting demonstrations. All the boot collections were available and visitors were looked after by professional bootfitters.
We were introduced, through the always-friendly Luigi Giamberini, Rossignol Group Area Manager for Centre Italy, to Stefano Macori, one, if not the best known bootfitter in Italy.
Stefano is also part of the Lange Bootfitting Unversity, where the brand educates future bootfitters in the art of the job.

Pavilion B was composed of a mix of brands, shops and innovative products.
The range here was wide and more aimed at the younger market than the slightly more serious Pavilion A.
The Slacklines and Indoboard area took over a part of the centre of the building, along with 3 climbing walls, set up with professional instructors there to teach those interested in trying it out for free.
There was one large stand that provided a mix of technology products and good deals including drones on sale, and courses to become a pro drone-pilot. All of it recordable on the camera already installed in your goggles, available on the opposite stand.

Amongst other shops we had the chance to have a chat with Michele from “Like a River” shop, based in Reggio Emilia. They had the new clothing line from Columbia and had found an interesting way to display it; wearing the base layer reversed on the mannequin. This way we could clearly see the technology used by the brand, called OmniHeat. They have added dots of silver inside the material to reflect the body heat but there is also enough space between the dots for the material to be breathable.
According to Michele, Columbia believes strongly in this technology and is going to adopt it on different pieces of clothing and accessories. We found a pair of gloves with the OmniHeat system in the shops area, at Pavilion C so we’ll get the chance to test those as well. Keep on following us to know how the test on snow goes!

As mentioned earlier, Pavilion C was reserved for shops to display their brands and accessories, giving them the chance to sell old stock at competitive prices and for visitors to buy equipment at a good deal in comparison to the new collections. A good way for those who don’t have huge budgets to be able to afford a sport which can otherwise be very expensive.

The outdoor area had a lot to offer to those keen to spend a bit of time trying out activities, quite a pleasant break, under Modena’s blue sky and 16 degrees.
An area of artificial snow was created for those keen to learn how to ski, with free lessons provided from the Maestri di Sci of the Emilia Romagna region.
Additionally, a rail park was built for the ski and snowboard competitions that took place throughout the show.
Next to it, a great mountain bike track had been created, with the chance to test bikes and get tips from instructors as well.
On the opposite side there was an ice rink, for people to try skates and get their legs back for the winter! On the external ring of the ice rink, a ski-cross piste had been created for those interested in trying out the sport and for sledge dogs to show their strength, which was part of the exhibition organised by the region of Calabria.
The 2015 SkiPass lived up to the expectations that we had. It is not quite the grand show that we were used to around 3-4 years ago, but it still has plenty of surprises up its sleeve. It’s a show that is interesting and useful for many people; from those looking for a bargain (from clothes to ski pass deals) to those looking for the newest equipment models, fashion trends or innovative ski resorts. And to those, finally, that work within the industry, the Italian ski show provides a forum to maintain current connections and forge new ones.

November has begun and as the saying goes: SkiPass is closed, the winter can start.


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