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TRENTINO_VENETO 5th - 12th JULY 2014

29 April 2014

Interview with Roberta Falda, Event Director WTOC 2014

The World Championships are getting closer and theire preparations are underway.
We were able to ask a few questions to Roberta Falda, Event Director of the WTOC 2014 (World Trail Orienteering Champioships).

. Hello Roberta, as usual we would like to present you, in a few lines, to those who do not know you yet.

As a child I began to practice orienteering race in 1983, in Berici Hills near Vicenza, my native country. I started this adventure with the orienteering club CSI Barbarano; just last year we celebrated my first thirty years of orienteering at the Pre-WTOC accompanied by all the teams.
I immediately fell in love with this sport that has given me a lot both in personal experience and results. I won my first Veneto championship at age of 13, in 1985. Due to an injury I was no longer able to run and I started by chance with the Trail Orienteering.
In 1995 I moved to Trento to work at the secretariat of the Italian Federation FISO. It has been my job for many years, with a break of four years in the FISI - Winter Sports.
I have been a member of various committees in FISO, such as the comm. Technical Educational, the comm. TrailO, the comm. International Relations. Since 2009 I am a member also of the International Commission of TrailO IOF.
I am in possession of almost all technical Federal roles, as well as Senior Advisor to the IOF Event.
I received by CONI, over the years, and for different reasons, the Bronze Star Sporting Merit and the Gold Medal at the Athletic Value.

. Can you explain to us what are the main tasks of the Event Director in an event like the WTOC 2014?

In addition to Event Director I am also a member of the CO, so some tasks overlap.
Regarding the WTOC, I would say that it substantially consists in supervising the whole organization of the event, from the technical part to the logistics, through IT and Media.
The work was carried out and takes place in several stages. The initial one, four years ago, has affected the choice of land, choice of technical staff, structuring and planning of the work foe the week WTOC.
Now it is mainly to coordinate the staff, the managers of the various sectors, to liaise with the offices for the hotel accommodations and with the national teams, as well as with the IOF Advisor; maintain relationships with local authorities and especially to troubleshoot problems that may occur.
Basically the Event Director is the tip of the pyramid formed by the many actors who are working with a lot of dedication for the success of the event and then watches them all from "high" but at the same time has o be a constant and reliable reference for everyone.

. Can you give us a quick overview of the types of areas chosen for the WTOC 2014?

The event takes place on different terrains and areas according both to territorial jurisdictions and type of land.
The areas involve two regions and we have tried to be balanced to ensure the same visibility and importance to both. we'll give the athletes different soils experiences and different tracks: Valsugana, Lavarone Plateau, Asiago Plateau. Athletes will enjoy a beautiful pine forest and a city park at the TempO scheduled in Alberè of Tenna for the qualification and for the final in Hapsburg Park of Levico. The two PreO races will take place at the spectacular flat Millegrobbe in the first day and will end on the complicated terrain of Campomuletto.
The medals of the two specialties will be awarded one in the Trentino region and one in the Veneto region.
I believe that in a good World Championships the best athlete wins on lands of different types but also with tracks made with different techniques at the same time with fair play for all participants. I think that it will be so in Italy.

. Do you think the WTOC 2014 will be useful to talk about the orienteering culture in a country like Italy where, unfortunately, it's not very well known yet?

It's so hard to get attention from the media. I believe we will not be able to have sufficient visibility throughout Italy but surely it increases the value of the orienteering sport in Italy will be increased and will gain more dignity.
The World Championships will be a great way to known the area, we have many foreign visitors and there are many viewers who will be attending. Through the World Championships guests a little more of Italy will be known, in particular the beautiful mountains of Trentino and Veneto.

. We know that you were a professional orienteer in the past - including a gold medal at the World Championships of 2007 - and a great experience as the coach of the national TrailO. Do you think these experiences are useful to play the role of Event Director of the WTOC?

I have always been convinced that a good athlete does not automatically become a "good coach."
Surely I participated in many World and European Championships, both as an athlete and as a coach and it's helpful to me. Last but not least, i've been IOF Advisor to the recent WTOC in Finland. I learned about sructure and problems of a similar event.
In thirty years of activity I was involved in the promotion, competition, training and organization; all experiences are now used for the first WTOC event ever organized in Italy and it requires the contribution of all energies.
I have also experience of other high-level events, in 2013 I was a volunteer in Nordic Ski World Championships in Fiemme and in the Winter Universiade.
I recognize in myself the ability to meet a lot of people and to understand how they can be coordinated as to find the best solution and create a good relations network for correct operation.

Organizing Committee WOC-WTOC 2014
c/o APT Valsugana Villa Sissi - Loc. Parco, 3 - 38056 Levico Terme - Trento - Italy
Phone +39 0461 727700 - -
P.iva 02244210221

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