Zakopane will host the World Alpine and Nordic Skiing Championships for the second time in two years ©INAS

The Suche ski resort near Zakopane is set to host the International Federation for Athletes with Intellectual Impairments (INAS) World Alpine and Nordic Skiing Championships from tomorrow.

Over the course of the next five days, athletes are set to compete in several events in the Polish town.

France's Melanie De Bonna will be one of the favourites in women's competition as she begins her quest to defend her three titles.

The 21-year-old claimed gold in the super-G, giant slalom and slalom races on home snow in Gourette last year.

Japan's Yoshihidi Kimura will also be looking to keep hold of his super-G and slalom titles, but compatriot Satoshi Tagawa, who won last year's giant slalom crown, will undoubtedly push him close.

Tagawa says he is ready for the challenge.

"I want my revenge [on Kimura]," he said.

"I will get myself mentally prepared for the event."

Melanie De Bonna currently has three titles to her name ©INAS
Melanie De Bonna currently has three titles to her name ©INAS

Home fans will be relying on Patryk Jakiela to give them something to cheer about as he looks to defend his 15 kilometres free technique title.

"For a few years I have been winning the 15km long course at the World Championships and I hope that I will win in Zakopane too," Jakiela said.

"I train a lot and feel strong, but I know that other players will want to stop me.

"There may be many situations on the race route, I can fall over, I can break a ski, I can lose a lot of strength, but I promise that I will fight.

"I like this race because I'm strong."

Estonia's Haans Teearu, the 10km champion, however, has the potential to spoil the party.

If that is the case, the home fans will still have their 3x2.5km relay team to support as Jakiela and Jerzy and Michal Krzanowski are the favourites for the event having won it in 2017.

In addition to II1 category athletes, the Championships in Zakopane will also see the debut of two trail impairment groups - II2 for athletes with more significant impairments and II3 for athletes with high functioning autism.

The INAS Alpine and Nordic Skiing Championships will run until March 2.