As for many others also for top italian orienteer and our PWT Italy runner Riccardo Scalet, 2020 has been a weird and not easy year. With a constant uncertainty of the racing season and what would have been the next goal.
But despite that thanks to a good attitude and mental strength he managed once again to win the gold medal in Sprint, Long and Middle distance at the Italian championships, reaching the incredible number of 19 total Italian Champions titles.
With the fresh news of the cancellation of Euromeeting, the last standing big international event for elite orienteering runners, we had a chat with Riccardo to know more in detail how this 2020 went and what his plan for the future will be.
PWT: So Riccardo it was great to see you on the top of the podium this year too. How was the planning of the season?
R: In 2020 my main focus was sprint WOC in Denmark together with EOC in Estonia and WC final in Cansiglio (Italy). COVID-19 did really mess with the calendar and postponed or cancelled all main international events, so the focus shifted to national champs. Anyway it was nice after the lock-down to be able to compete again and having sprint and long distance Italian Championships close to home in S.Martino di Castrozza and Passo Valles, together with the middle champs in Vigolo Vattaro, they all were a good chance to be back on “race mode”.
PWT: Your last big goal for this year was Euromeeting which unfortunately was cancelled, how did you prepare for it?
R: Indeed, Euromeeting was the last standing big international event but, unfortunately it was cancelled too…really a pity. I anyway had the chance in August to drive to Czech Republic with Tommaso for a 10 days training camp in WOC terrain, which was really intense and great to see how the maps and forests are and get a taste of what we will expect at WOC next summer.
PWT: What was the biggest challenge for you in this weird 2020 and how did you overcome it?
R: If I had to pick one thing in particular I would say for sure the uncertainty. I mean the fact of preparing for a specific event and then seeing this to be cancel was really frustrating. But of course thinking it as an organiser point of view, it was the best decision to take in order to ensure the safety of all participants. So yes for me it was a constant game of making newer and newer goals to motivate me to keep on training hard.
PWT: Have you already planned your end of the season-winter preparation for 2021?
R: Right now there are some plans for a training camp in Czech Republic at the end of October, but my season is officially over now. I will have some easy weeks and relax to then begin with the winter preparation with some camps with PWT Italy team. Probably in South Italy in the area of Chiatona. We were there some years ago and the forest maps around are really cool, so I am looking forward for that.