For the third year in a row, Québec City will play host to Red Bull
TORONTO, Nov. 7 /CNW/ - Sharpen your blades, Red Bull Crashed Ice is
back. A combination of downhill skiing, hockey and boardercross, Red Bull
Crashed Ice will return to the historic district of Old Québec on
January 26, 2008, as the city begins to celebrate its 400th anniversary. Last
year, over 75,000 screaming fans lined the cobblestone streets as they watched
100 participants soar down the 500m ice-track.
The one-of-a-kind 535m (with 56m vertical) urban ice track will wind and
dive its way through the city's stunning landscape. However there will be no
time for the competitors to stop and taste the tire d'érable (snow taffy), as
they'll have to navigate the course's massive vertical drops, razor-sharp
turns, jumps and steps, all while doing speeds of up to 50 km/hr. If that's
not enough of a rush, they'll also have a live audience of 75,000 spectators
cheering them on.
Construction of this discipline-twisting course will take place over a
three-week period. Approximately 100 pairs of Quebéc's strongest hands will be
on deck as 40 boxes (4ft x 4ft x 4ft, 1700 pounds each) of, yes - you guessed
it, crashed ice - will be spread across the streets of Old Québec. Along with
physical might, a cooling system featuring seven chiller machines will be used
to ensure the sleek and smooth ice surface which will help produce the right
temperature throughout the build of the course. Polymer boards are used to
keep competitors on the track and fans from harm's way. But, who's kidding
whom, they'll also serve as the rhythm board for the thousands of fans
cheering the next heat of racers. Combined, crashed ice and boards alone are
not enough to hold the course up to the pounding from fans and skaters alike.
Providing foundational support are 900 adjustable steel legs and a couple
thousand large wood screws.
The race format is developed to separate the contenders from the
pretenders. To determine the champion, consecutive heats of four skaters
racing head-to-head in a double elimination bracket will narrow the field down
from the top 64 qualifiers to a final four. Among the 100 international and
national competitors is 2007 Red Bull Crashed Ice Québec City and Helsinki
champion, Kevin Olson of Lethbridge, AB. Joining Olson will be 2007 finalists
Ross Thompson of Kamloops, BC, and Ben Benicky of North Vancouver, BC, giving
the west top representation in this east-side showdown.
"Racing down the course, your body takes a beating. But when you're in
that starting gate and you hear the crowd, you don't feel a thing. You forget
the pain, you forget it all," says Kevin Olson. "I'm just a regular Joe. Most
of these guys are. We're not pros. Competing in Red Bull Crashed Ice is such a
rush - to win it is even better."
A grand prize of $5,000 will be awarded to the winner of Red Bull Crashed
Ice, with second, third, and fourth place finishers sharing an additional
Registration for Red Bull Crashed Ice Qualifiers opens online
November 19, 12:00 pm ET at www.redbullcrashedice.ca. Qualifiers consist of
individual speed trials on flat surface indoor and outdoor rinks in 11 cities
across Canada, with successful participants demonstrating skating skill,
agility, strategy and strength.
About Red Bull Crashed Ice
Since Quebec produces some of the world's best hockey players, its
capital city is a fitting return location for Red Bull Crashed Ice. Already,
hundreds of thousands of people from around the world have witnessed the
action-packed new sport of ice-cross downhill in cities with rich hockey
roots, including its debut in Stockholm, Sweden (2000), Klagenfurt, Austria
(2001), Duluth, Minnesota, USA (2003, 2004), Moscow, Russia (2004), Prague,
Czech Republic (2005), Helsinki, Finland (2007), along with its exciting
second annual Canadian showing last year in Québec City.
This amazing event is possible thanks to many partners who contributed
financially and in services, such as Québec City Tourism, the Bureau de la
Capitale Nationale, Société du 400e anniversaire de Québec and the City of
Québec. Red Bull Crashed Ice extends special thanks to the SODEQ, to the
Merchants Associations of Place-Royale, the Old Port and Petit-Champlain
districts, and to the residents.
For further information:
For further information: For media in Quebec City, please contact:
Marie-Claire D'Aoust, Gestev, (418) 802-6275, email@example.com; For media in
Montreal, please contact: Emilie Verret, Edelman, (514) 844-6665 x 228,
firstname.lastname@example.org; For media outside of Quebec, please contact: Sonia
Klinger, Red Bull, (416) 348-0389 x 232, email@example.com; Melissa
Graham/Denise Attallah, Edelman, (416) 979-1120 x 350/239,