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The Great Odyssey: an incredible race in the sumptuous landscapes of Savoie Mont Blanc


The Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc: a life-size adventure

COMPETITION – The Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc starts this Saturday from Samoëns. This unique race has been, since its first edition in January 2005, the annual dog sled event in Europe. The race, which returns to the public this year, is held until January 19, 2022.

Savoy is getting ready to experience the La Grande Odyssée adventure. This is the most demanding sled dog stage race in a unique alpine setting. Private in 2021, La Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc will be able to open again to amateurs. But beware, the health crisis is forcing the organizers to reorganize public access to the race.

For the 18th edition to take place in the best possible conditions, adults and children over 12 years old must present a valid health pass to access the start and finish site of each stage. On these sites, the wearing of a mask is also compulsory for adults and children from 6 years old throughout the duration of the event.

The race will offer daily to the faithful who cannot go to the scene many videos and summaries that you will find in particular on LCI.fr.

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The Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc: a life-size adventure

An escape in the heart of Savoie Mont Blanc

Until January 19, 66 mushers and their 600 top-level athlete dogs, coming from the great nations of European mushing, will set off for 11 days of racing. The canines will swallow nearly 400 km in 10 stages for 12,000 meters of elevation gain. The teams will cross around twenty resorts, villages and towns and will evolve on varied routes (Nordic, alpine and forest), sometimes specifically designed for racing outside ski areas and in the heart of nature, through the magnificent landscapes of Savoy.

– Saturday 8, based on the leisure activities of Lac aux Dames de Samoëns, conferences and activities will start the event before an opening ceremony scheduled for 6 p.m.

– The first stage of the 18th edition of La Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc, Montagnes du Giffre-Grand Massif, will start from Morillon the next day at 4.30 p.m. The race will then cross the Col de la Ramaz on January 10, cross Les Gets on the 11th and Megève on the 12th.

– The race will stage three days in Tarentaise with a stage in Valmorel on Thursday 13th, Peisey-Vallandry the next day and Pralognan-la-Vanoise on Saturday 15th January.

– It will end in Haute Maurienne Vanoise, historic home of the race, with three stages over 4 days: Bessans – Bonneval-sur-Arc on Sunday 16 with a mass-start start, Aussois the next day before the legendary stage of the bivouac in Val Cenis over two days on January 18 and 19.

The official program can be found on the Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc website.

The 4 races of the 18th edition

For this 18th edition, the organizing team of La Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc is offering 4 races:

– The main race La Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc: 29 teams, 10 stages, nearly 400 km

– The Flexadin Trophy, from January 9 to 11, 3 stages, 12 teams, <100 km

– The Eukanuba Trophy: from January 12 to 14, 3 stages, 12 teams, 89 km

– The Aesio Trophy: from January 17 to 19, 3 stages, 12 teams, 104 km

The cream of European mushing

This year, for the 18th edition, an exceptional sports platform is expected with 66 mushers and their 600 dog-athletes from 8 major European mushing nations (France, Switzerland, Spain, Germany, Italy or the Netherlands). All the great mushers who have marked the race over the past three years will be present and the competition promises to be the toughest.

In the Open category (pool of 12 dogs), we will find the French Rémy Coste, who will try to run for a 6th title. His most formidable rival will undoubtedly be the Spaniard Iker Ozkoïdi Garcia, twice second. Norwegian Sissel Wolf Molmen returns after her third place in 2019 to aim for the podium again or better. It will also be necessary to count on the German armada (seven mushers) led by Heinrich Winter, Sylvia Ulrich and Detlef Oyen. With such a high field, the teams will undoubtedly have to fight until the last stage to secure the victory and the places on the podium.

In the Limited category (pool of 8 to 9 dogs), the French, double champion Cindy Duport will again find on her road the French Christian Perlwitz, her runner-up of the last two editions, but it is another French musher who could prevent it. to make the pass of three. Indeed, Aurélie Delattre, who took third place in the 2020 edition in the Open category, is aligned this year in the Limited category. This announces a very high level race between the two mushers.

To be continued on LCI.fr

Until January 19, LCI.fr will make you experience the most beautiful moments of the La Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc race with original reports, the most beautiful images of each stage, articles on the preparation of mushers but especially dogs, real stars of this event, and interviews with the main protagonists and the management team.

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