The first round of the 2022 Paragliding World Cup tour begins on 20 October 2021 in la Rioja, Argentina, and is followed a week later by the 17th FAI Paragliding World Championships in Loma Bola.
The PWC team are running both events. Ruth Jessop reports:
Paragliding World Cup, La Rioja, 20-27 October 2021
The last World Cup, before the world went dark, was in November 2019, in Loma Bola. Our return to Argentina is therefore very poignant. With the sun shining and the lights firmly back on, we are delighted to announce an Argentinian paragliding double bill: the World Cup at La Rioja closely followed by the World Championships at Loma Bola.
La Rioja is in the foothills of the Andes. The combination of a semi-arid climate, flat lands to the east and mountains to the west creates beautiful conditions for cross country paragliding and racing. The take-off, Cerró De la Cruz, is at an altitude of almost 1200m, 600m above the flatlands in front of the launch site.
Flying along the ridge line and back into the mountains is a classic route, but there are also options to connect to the flats. With strong, fast climbs and lots of possibilities for imaginative task setting, it promises to be every competition pilot’s dream.
We then move north to the legendary Loma Bola.
17th FAI World Paragliding XC Championships, Loma Bola, 31 October – 13 November 2021
At the World Cup in 2019, Loma Bola provided some of the most varied flying conditions imaginable. At times, the venue produced fast racing conditions, providing the familiar full-speed tasks we see at all the most popular competition locations. But it also produced days which were more stable, or more overcast, or windier. The variations in both weather and terrain meant that both the depth and breadth of pilots’ skills were tested.
A sharp sense of when to fly fast, and when to slow down, could well be critical to success, and could possibly determine who will be crowned the next World Champion. Will it be a competition that favours the chess players over the adrenaline junkies? Only time will tell.
Just a reminder that the World Cup is an individual event and the World Championships is a national team event. Both promise to be far more appreciated than ever before. A new beginning, and perhaps new champions.
You can keep up with the first event, the World Cup in La Rioja, via the live Commentary, which will give a detailed explanation of the race every day. This will be brought to you on the World Cup live app and website.