One Night Pass today

At the back of the field, Nicola Donini (ITA3) has pulled his Night Pass for tonight.

ITA3 performs during the Red Bull X-Alps pre-shooting in Kleinarl, Austria on June 14, 2021.

A Night Pass allows an athlete to keep moving between 10:30pm and 05:00am, when the other athletes have to stay where they are. 

It's a useful tool for the athletes to make up a distance on the ones in front of them. Another tactic includes avoiding the mandatory elimination. If you're at the very back, you can overtake the athlete in front of you during the night and they will be eliminated, not you. 

Pulling a Night Pass is no easy decision though. It also means that you have no rest and may be more tired the next days, moving slower or making mistakes.

For Nicola Donini (ITA3), who will walk through the night tonight, it's still more complicated. He has violated airspace yesterday, which means he flew into a flight zone that is forbidden for paragliders. He received a penalty of 48 hours according to the rules. This means he has to stop moving for 48h after his next rest period. 

The official statement from race organizers said: "Nicola Donini (ITA3) made a rule violation 5.4. by flying into flight zone TMZ LOWI W on Thursday 24th of June at (UTC)102739-10350. He receives penalty of 48hours, which he has to add after his next night rest period."

His supporter Fiorenzo Graziano explained that Nicola was in very strong lift and wind when he was flying close to the airspace and wasn't able to escape on time. 

When they heard they will receive the penalty, they immediately decided to pull the Night Pass. That means Nicola's next rest period is not ending on Saturday morning but on Sunday morning. From Sunday morning 05:00am he has to stop moving until Tuesday morning 05:00am. 

Fiorenzo said they will now push as hard as possible until Tuesday morning. "We know it is going to be difficult but not impossible." 

"Conditions are difficult today for flying but we will push as hard as we can," Fiorenzo continued. "Then we will calculate where we have to walk to tonight to be in a good place for flying tomorrow morning. Tomorrow is expected to be a good flying day. Then we try to gain as many positions as we can."

Follow him through the night on Live Tracking!

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