Cross Country Skiing – Meet the CS Army HQ team 22/23. Paredi: “The conditions are there to work well” – Fondo Italia

The new cross-country skiing team meeting started in Borno, Brescia Province Army Sports Centerwho will be the guest of Paolo Carrara’s Next Pro and next Friday he will also play a roller skis kermesse in Boario.

For the Alpine troops it is the fourth meeting, which follows the initial ones in Pollein and Courmayeur in May and the others in Forni Avoltri and Brunico. Race Sergio Bonaldiwho switched to snowboarding, is still at the helm of CS Army Simon Parentihowever, in a managerial role, he is flanked by Elisa Brocard, who hung up their skis and immediately joined the team’s technical staff. To complete the group of technicians there are the skiman Daniel Antonioli and the sports coach Denis Bellotti, former national track and field, with two degrees.

The team consists of eight registered athletes and a total: is Maicol Rastelli, Giacomo Gabrielli, Giuseppe Montello, Michele Gasperi, Francesco Manzoni, Daniele Serra, Laura Colombo, Emilie Jeantet and the sum Nicholas Cousini. Manzoni and Gasperi are also seen in the Azzurri national team.

On the occasion of the third meeting, Simon Parenti took stock of the situation in preparation. “It’s going well – said a Fund of Italywhen in April I planned the summer work, I thought a lot about the training that will take place in places with roller ski tracks. We follow some of the indications that the competitive management in Dobbiaco gives us about the program and ideas of Markus Cramer. We can’t follow them to the letter for logistical reasons because I had already planned all the rallies before Cramer’s arrival, but I changed something to follow his instructions, which include a lot of running and more work, they make a lot of volume in the first week load and then go to decrease by increasing the volume”.

Corsa that was already present in his program Simon Parentigreat lover of athletics, so much so that he often takes part in various summer competitions. “Yes, it was already part of our program. In fact, in every meeting we do a work consisting of 1200 meters that must be repeated five or six times, changing the pace, going from L1 to L5, and then we test the lactate at the end of each test, so we have a lactate curve and see the conditions of the athlete. This will give us good indications in the autumn.”.

Next July 16, Simon Parenti will marry his Roberta, in an event that will see many protagonists of blue cross-country skiing. On the occasion of their honeymoon, it will be up to his assistant, Elisa Brocard, to take over the reins of the team. “Eliza was immediately available. Since it’s early days, I’m still in control, it’s watching me, following me, and learning. However, we have already started to divide the tasks, especially in the technical part, since she is a trainer. He does the video analysis with the athletes and I trust his abilities. We talk to each other a lot about the work that needs to be done and the cooperation is going well and because we have known each other for years now. Now she’ll have her testing ground at the fifth meeting, in Brunico, when I’m on my honeymoon and she’ll have to do it all by herself. It will be a good experience for her, but I can tell you that she has already changed her mind, before she used to think as an athlete, now she does it as a coach. I’m sure he has all the skills and abilities to do this job here, he just needs to learn. Then she has Eric (Benedetto, ed) who can help her with many things. I am convinced she will be an excellent coach and within the national movement we need women in these roles.”

That the group is too big is not a concern Paredi. “Actually, I am happy to have such a great team because I believe in these guys and I thank CS Army for having faith in the work of these athletes and their potential for growth. It is also possible for me and Elisa to work with nine athletes and it can also follow women. Finally, there are mature players like Rasta and Pepe, with whom I don’t have to worry too much about management.”

The squad includes Manzoni, Gasperi and Jeantet, who have not been confirmed in the Milan-Cortina 2026 group. However, the three were not affected by the ban, but are very motivated to get the national team back: “I found them calm – he emphasized ParediAlready when I called them after the publication of the national teams, they knew very well what they were going to do, calm and with a great desire to work. As for the two males in particular, we will continue with the work we did with Steo last year. Both being part of the observed team, they will have a bit more attention from FISI: two tests in Rovereto, one in June and the other in October, plus a snow meeting in November, in which they will join Fulvio’s team (Scola, ed.). Also with these three elements I had already worked two years ago in the national team, so we already know each other and that helps us”.

Paredi He then spoke about the other athletes in his group, in order of seniority, starting with Maicol Rastelli. “Rasta was closed early last season due to the fall of Sappada. At first it seemed like nothing serious, but it actually caused him enough problems that he still carries. For this reason he does a different job than the rest of the team, less running and more roller skiing. Now it seems to be on the mend. Sure, compared to the rest of the group, he’s the furthest behind in condition, but that doesn’t bother me that much. We know what he can do if he is motivated in the right world and has the goals: to return to the World Cup and qualify for the Planica sprint.”

Second year in cross-country skiing for Baby Modelwho struggled last season to earn international call-ups. “Last year was also unlucky. Coming from a biathlon background, he had zero FIS points, so for the first races in Santa Caterina, after doing an excellent test in Livigno, he found himself starting from the front. Unfortunately it snowed that day and he found himself hitting the track for the others. He then finished second twice in the Coppa Italia, always in races in which the winner went on to the World Cup. At the end of December he was poor and the form dropped, even if he had another excellent race at Lama Mocogno. He could not be expected to qualify for the Olympics in the first year.
For the next season, the goal is to qualify for the World Cup and the 15 km of Planitsa, because the goal must be set high. The luck, in relation to last season, is that despite ’92 it will be able to qualify for the OPA Cup matches, which was impossible last year due to what was decided from above. So he will be able to take one step at a time.”

Model he is betting big on the next season and asked the coach to have a different, much tougher schedule. “When he’s at home he’ll perform much higher volumes than others and lower intensities. For me it is new, I have never tried this road and he knows it, but talking with him, I saw him very convinced and I decided to follow him in this goal because I saw that he really believes in it. He has already done this kind of work in biathlon and is very calm. Obviously it will be important to give me lots of feedback, because with loads this high you can’t go wrong. I have to admit it’s also an opportunity for me, I can see how far we can go.”

Two other athletes Paredi wants to promote are Giacomo Gabrielli and Daniele Serra. In both cases the coach knows what to work on. “With Jack (Gabrielli, ed) we will work on qualifying, where he needs to improve. At this moment we are focused on something else, we feel tension up to the threshold rhythm. To improve the qualification, the idea is to work well throughout the sprint preparation, starting from the day before until the warm-up. In the battery is always another athlete, but it needs qualification.
Daniele Serra, on the other hand, needs to work on his race management, because he always starts very strong and falls mid-race, builds up lactate, and then struggles to shed it. He is always a generous guy, but he has to be careful, he has to understand that it is important to manage energy both in the match and in training. If a workout calls for a certain pace, he has to do the right job, often tending to be too generous and go too fast. There are workouts where you can shoot, others where you have to recover. It is important that he can assimilate what I ask of him, he will gain a lot both in training and in the match, where whoever wins goes to development.”

In addition to Emilie Jeantet, there is also in the group Laura Colombowith whom Paredi already worked last season: “Yours is more of a technical problem than a physical one. During the winter it always loses a lot on descents and planes, where you have to ski and technique counts a lot. If you look at last season, the uphill had good moments. So we will work on the technical part to continue qualifying for the OPA Cup”.

In the group and the aggregate Nicholas Cousini: “He’s the newcomer, he’s been with us since the second meeting. I’ve been following him for a month now, he’s definitely someone who wants to work and likes to run. Obviously we’re still getting to know each other and I have to find out for sure, but he definitely has the physical means.”

After last season’s results, Mikael Abram and Federica Cassol they went from the home team to the national team. According to Paredi, this should be a stimulus for those who are now part of the Army Sports Center team: “It’s the first thing I told the athletes: getting to the national team is not impossible. Last year Abram and Cassol were with us and many of my current athletes were not far behind them, sometimes even ahead. The two must be the reference point to understand that you can reach the national team. You have to be confident, also because our domestic athletes are very well taken care of, we work for us, from May to November they have 140 load days and a hundred of them are in a meeting with us. We try to put them in the best possible working conditions to achieve the goals that have been set.”

Agreement with Asiva Commissionthree Under 23s from Valle d’Aosta join this year’s Centro Sportivo Esercito home team: “As the Army, Elisa and I are also working with an ASIVA Under 23 project, in which I follow the U23 athletes of the Aosta Valley team, in collaboration with Tovagliari. The athletes are Ollier, Bonino and Macori, who will try to join us in all the rallies. Asiva will also provide a technician to help us and not force us to follow too many athletes. In addition, this way it will not only be a training experience for the athletes but also for the coaches themselves. From September, therefore, the group will be even more crowded, as we will continue the collaboration with the Bergamo Under Up team.”


Coach in charge: Simone Paredi
Assistant coach: Elisa Brocard

Maicol Rastelli (1991)
Giuseppe Montello (1992)
Giacomo Gabrieli (1996)
Daniel Serra (1996)
Francesco Manzoni (2000)
Michele Gasperi (2000)
Nicolò Cusini (2001)

Laura Colombo (1999)
Emilie Jeantet (2000)

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