The ISMF World Cup is to get underway tomorrow ©Getty Images

The first leg of the International Ski Mountaineering Federation (ISMF) World Cup season is to be held in Pontedilegno-Tonale in Italy, also making it the first to be held since the sport made it onto the Milan Cortina 2026 Olympics programme.

The season is scheduled to begin tomorrow, with competition coming to a close on Sunday (December 19).

The World Cup leg was organised by the ISMF and the Pontedilegno-Tonale Organising Committee

"After the successful race season of last year, we are excited to present the first event of the upcoming season," said ISMF vice-president of sports and events Pierre Dupont.

"The general atmosphere is very thrilling and I strongly believe that the races in Pontedilegno will magnificently open the new skimo season. 

"A sincere good luck to all competing athletes."

Milan Cortina 2026 was confirmed as the host of the Winter Olympics in 2019 ©Getty Images
Milan Cortina 2026 was confirmed as the host of the Winter Olympics in 2019 ©Getty Images

Competition is to be broadcast on Eurovision Sport, with live-streaming of the quarter-finals, semi-finals and finals of the sprint and vertical races.

There will also be individual races later this weekend as part of the World Cup leg.

There are 131 entries for sprint, 148 for vertical and 158 for individual, with 19 nations on the start list.

France's Thibaut Anselmet and Marianne Fatton of Switzerland won the sprint races last year.

Italian Federico Nicolini and France's Axelle Gachet Mollaret won the vertical races.

Following this weekend, there will be another six legs of the World Cup, starting in Andorra and Morgins in Switzerland in January.

Caspoggio in Italy holds the next leg in February prior to the European Championships in Spain, with Erciyes in Turkey the next World Cup leg later that month.

Madonna di Campiglio, also in Italy, is to host the penultimate stage in March, followed by Flaine in France on April 6.

Ski mountaineering was included in the Milan Cortina 2026 programme in July.