Art. 1 – Organisation

The event “Only the Brave – 2023 STRONG” is organised by the Volunteer Fire Brigade of Mezzano, in collaboration with the other Corps of the Primiero District, the Trentino Fire Training Centre and the Federation of Trentino Volunteer Fire Brigades, under the patronage of the Town Hall of Mezzano and the Municipality of Primiero. The event is also supported by many private sponsors.

Art. 2 – Participants

Any firefighter actively on service between 18 and 60 years of age with a valid medical certificate (type “B” medical certificate with vascular system under stress) is eligible to participate in the competition. This certificate must be presented at the race office to collect your bib number.

Art. 3 – Purpose of the competition

The competition consists in covering a mountain track fully equipped and carrying a complete breathing apparatus with single or double cylinder(s) as specified in point V. The race is for individuals. Participants will line up by progressive order of registration, in the “Piazza Mons. Orler” near the church of Mezzano. Just before the start, they will have to wear the mask around their necks, while the apparata will be placed on the table provided by the organisation. At the start, competitors must wear the breathing apparatus, but not connected to the cylinders. No one will be able to help the firefighters with the dressing. The mask and supply valve must be fitted before crossing the bridge over the Cismon River (about 500 metres from the start – The whistle test is waived on the assumption that this, as well as the leak test, has already been have already been carried out before the equipment is handed over to the organisation.). On the bridge, staff will stop anyone who is not wearing the full equipment properly until the problem is rectified. Along the route, the organisation will check that each participant does not disconnect the erogator, on pain of immediate disqualification. Running out of air will also result in disqualification. If, for any reason, a firefighter has to disconnect the regulator and/or remove the mask, he/she may do so, but must not proceed down the course the cylinder/breathing valve/mask connection is re-established. Halfway through the race, competitors will find the mandatory cylinder exchange area. The cylinders, previously provided by the competitors, will be taken to this area by the staff and placed according to their bib numbers. Each competitor is responsible for replacing the bottle by his own. Only after passing the “CAMBIO BOMBOLA” (bottle change) sign will the competitor be allowed to start the change. Pack saddles and cylinders with quick release couplings are not allowed: only standard screw-on couplings are permitted. In the area, each competitor will receive a water bottle. Before leaving the “CAMBIO BOMBOLA” area, riders will be checked by a staff member who will stop riders who are not properly connected until everything is in order. Participants equipped with double bottles are not obliged to stop at the changeover area, anyway they will also find a drink.

Art. 4 – Registration

The “strong” competition allows a maximum of 150 participants. Registration must be made through the fire brigades/corps; the form is available on the website Each Division/Corps must also compile a PDF form with the list of all dependent candidates, signed by the Chief, also available on the site, section “Iscrizioni. Entries can be submitted from 1 July 2023. The organisation will review each application received, assessing its eligibility and accepting or rejecting each application. A registration fee must be paid (30€ per participant – including the post-race dinner and a rich race-package). Once this payment has been made, and once the confirmation mail has been received, the registration is complete and confirmed. The organisation will not be responsible for any errors in the forms that prevent communication. For organisational reasons, once the of 150 participants are reached, the registration process will be closed and late registrations will be refused. Participants who, for whatever reason, do not personally collect their start number and the race-package will not be reimbursed (for the same reason, only the firefighter present will receive the package).

Art. 5 – Clothes and equipment

Each participant must wear suitable personal protective equipment in accordance with EN 15614:2007, EN UNI 11612:2009 or forest fire suit, rescue boots in accordance with EN15090, helmet in accordance with EN443 for civilian firefighters, open circuit breathing apparatus, SCBA with air cylinder of max. 7.2 litres, 300 bar + second air cylinder (identical). Self-contained breathing apparatus with twin cylinders (max 7.2 litres, 300 bar) are permitted if previously registered. For identification purposes, breathing devices and cylinders will be marked when the start numbers are collected, and then handed over to the organisation at the SCBA-centre. At the end of the competition, the exhausted cylinders must be collected by the competitors in the collection area set up and signposted at the competition centre. The organisation will take care to verify that all cylinders do not exceed the 300 bar charge and will carry out spot checks on replacement cylinders when at the “cambio bombola”. As the start will be at dusk, participants are advised to carry a torch (not provided by the organisation). Gloves and belt are not compulsory.

Art. 6 – Race-package

Every participant who has registered and checked in at the race office on the day of the event will receive a race-package.

Art. 7 – Bib numbers

The race numbers and the race package must be collected on 7 October 2023 from 13.30 to 16.00 at the competition centre in Piazza Brolo in Mezzano (next to the start). Together with the race number, the organisation will supply the numbers to be placed on the cylinders, which must correspond to the race number in order to avoid any accidental substitution.

Art. 8 – Transport to the finish area

Between 15:00 and 16:00, each team will bring its own vehicles to the finish area, from where shuttles will take riders to the start area. In this way, everyone who reaches the finish line will be able to dispose of their spare clothing and return to the race centre as soon as the road is open again.

Art. 9 – Ranking

There will be only one classification for men and women. Prizes will be awarded to the first three finishers on the basis of total time. The classification by corps will be obtained by combining the results of the OTB Strong and the OTB Relay, adding the points obtained by each competitor according to the ranking of the two events, taking into account that the first classified will receive a point equal to the number of competitors, the second one point less, and so on. For this calculation, only the first 6 of each corps/command for the “strong” and for the “relay” will be considered. This year Only The Brave is twinned with Garda Lift On Fire. The corps/commanders who take part in both events by fielding at least 5 competitors at O.T.B. in Mezzano and 1 competitor at G.L.O.F. in Riva del Garda, will be able to take part in the draw for fantastic prizes such as an MSA breathing apparatus or a personal protective equipment in accordance with EN469 including amphibians.

Art. 10 – Jury

The race jury is made up of 3 judges: A representative of the Organising Committee (who will act as President) and two selected representatives among the accompanying persons. The members of the jury cannot take part in the race.

Art. 11 – Complaints

No complaints will be accepted against the decisions of the jury. 

Art. 12 – Insurance cover

The Trentino Volunteer Fire Brigade Association will take out an appropriate insurance policy for the event, which will cover the duration of the event.

Art.13 – Final rules

The Organising Committee sets the starting time of the race at 18.15. Participants must be at the starting gate at 17.45 for the registration procedure. Any changes to the schedule will be published on the website www.otb-vvf-eu before 4th October 2023. The Organising Committee also reserves the right to modify the rules if this is necessary to ensure the success of the event. Any changes to the rules will be published on the website within and no later than 4th  October 2023.