“That was a pretty devastating way to start the session… We’re a club of young children right up to adults who train. I think it’s for them that we felt the most disappointment.”- Sara Jones, Pontypool Ski Racing.
This story is a bit mental innit. BBC News reports that an artificial slope in Wales saw significant damage from a fire on Friday evening. An arsonist lit up the artificial ski slope at the Pontypool Ski Centre. This led to the ramp and the matting on the top portion of the hill being burnt. The Pontypool ski racing group still has the lower portion of the mountain to train on, but it’s a major blow to their fall plans. Some of the features of the ski hill include a 230-meter (around 755 feet) main slope that’s serviced by a surface lift, a mogul field, a beginner’s area, and a sprinkler system.
Sara Jones, who is the Chairwoman of Pontypool Ski Racing, had this to say about the criminal act:
Before every session, our coaches inspect the slope because we have had incidents of antisocial behaviour in the past where there’s been bottles and debris left which obviously we need to remove before training. They got to the top of the slope and they noticed that everything had been burnt down.”
They also gave a message to the arsonist, which is very classy of them:
“We wish the people who did this would actually come and join us, we’ll get you on skis and you can be part of a brilliant club, a fantastic sport, and enjoy this facility that we’re lucky to have in our community!
If you live in Wales and know anything about the matter, please contact Gwent Police.
Devastated by this mindless vandalism. The start ramp and matting has been burnt down last night. We spend so much time and money investing in our slope to be a community asset for all to enjoy. Please could you record and patrol @gwentpolice @TorfaenLeisureT @torfaencouncil 😢😢 pic.twitter.com/K2sgj6ziSX
— Pontypool Ski Racing (@PontypoolSki) August 27, 2022
Image Credits: Sara Jones of Pontypool Ski Racing, Torfaen Leusire Trust