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Unique Version Of Still Rare Alpina Elite 3.0 ECL Spotted

Have you noticed how the race between competing high-end ski boots makers is heating up?

Not to disparage ski and pole designers, but there was no revolution in their field in this century. True, tracks changed, weather conditions changed and lots of fine-tuning went into making them skis glide better in 2019.

Still, it’s modest in comparison to how much ski boots changed even in the last decade with introduction of carbon cuffs and all-carbon soles.

The race is on, fresh entrants appear on the market and all manufacturers have to develop new boots faster – and to find niches hitherto unexplored.

Enter Alpina.

The Slovenian high-end ski boots manufacturer has presented its newest top model at Seefeld 2019, but until now only a few sport them.

” Elite 3.0 ski boots are available only for our chosen athletes” Alpina says on its website.

We are not quite sure as to what’s the drag – every single athlete who happened to be among those ” chosen ” gave the Daily Skier nothing short of a raving review.

We suspect it might be that the quality of materials and complicity of work requires extremely highly level of craftsmanship. In other words, they are hand-made.

While the fans of Alpina await their chance to become a happy user of the latest from Žiri, at the recent Olos/ Muonio race a different version of Elite 3.0 was spotted:

Looks like hybrid between skating and classic boots, doesn’t it? ….
…compare to a ” standard” Elite 3.0 ECL
Owner of the unusual pair, Olympic & world medalist Alexander Bessmertnykh, explains that Alpina made those on his special request as he prefers more ankle support. They combine classic boots’ carbon sole with, essentially, skating boots upper – sans cuff

Vasja Rupnik, Alpina’s racing manager has told the Daily Skier this:

” They are called ECL 3.0 AS where “AS” stands for ankle support. They were initially developed for sprint in ECL 2.0 model but Bess liked them so much that he went on using them in all classic distance races and requested similar boots once we switched to Elite 3.0″

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With races held on ever shorter tracks with ever tighter turns, Alpina has decided to start offering ECL 3.0 AS to all who is willing & able to afford them. They will be available for pre-order at the end of December 2019.

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