Last lunch of the race at the Refuge du Montenvers, then off again towards Courmayeur

The crews set off for the last leg of the Coppa Delle Alpi 2024 at 8:00 this morning, in cloudy weather and a dusting of fresh snow on the highest mountains around Gstaad.

Just one kilometre from the start was the first block of Time Trials, with which the crews bid farewell to Switzerland. At the foot of the Glacier 3000, the penultimate Average Trial of the competition took place, followed immediately by the one at Col Des Montets, just after going through customs.

Once in France, the competitors crossed the Chamonix-Mont Blanc Valley and headed straight for Mègeve, a small town boasting one of the largest ski resorts in Europe, where a Passage Control took place. After that, they headed back to Chamonix, where the race morning ended.

Once they had parked their cars, the participants boarded the legendary Montenvers train, which climbs to an altitude of 1900 metres thanks to its cog railway system, which has been maintained since its inception in 1910, even though the original locomotives were steam-powered. The charming retro transfer took the participants to the Refuge, site of the last lunch in the race, in front of which the Mont Blanc peaks rise majestically: the Dru, the Grandes Jorasses and the Grandes Charmoz. Unfortunately, clouds prevented a view of Europe’s highest peaks, although with the help of a few gusts of wind, glimpses of the Grande Dru were possible. This is where, in 1955, a great Italian, Walter Bonatti, made a solo ascent along the south-west pillar in just six hours.

The Time Control at 15:30 opened the last sector of the race: the Time Trials in Courmayeur will decide the winners.