Riders Cup Returns

Image & Style Magazine

Riders Cup returns with record six stops in 2015/16

Image & Style Magazine
Luca Dallago of Austria, Fabian Mels of Germany, Scott Croxall of Canada and Toni Heikkkila of Finland perform at the finals of at Red Bull Crashed Ice, the Ice Cross Downhill World Championship, in Helsinki / Espoo, Finland on February 1, 2014. Photo Credit Sebastian Marko/Red Bull

The Riders Cup competition of the Ice Cross Downhill World Championship will be back bigger and better in its second season, expanding to six races in total with three high-speed downhill racing stops in North America and three in Europe. The world’s best ice cross downhill athletes will be taking on all-comers at the races open to the general public in search of valuable points that could help determine the 2015/16 Ice Cross Downhill World Champion.

The Riders Cup got off to a flying start last year with four races in four different countries, introducing the sport of Ice Cross Downhill to thousands of athletes while giving the sport’s best racers a chance to earn valuable world championship points. With the sport’s popularity growing even further, the Riders Cup will be back in the 2015/16 season with six races in five countries — Austria, France, Finland, Canada and the United States. In the sport of Ice Cross Downhill, four racers hit speeds of up to 50 km/h while hurtling down massive ice tracks filled with drops, hairpin turns, and gaps with the two fastest from each heat advancing to the next round in a knock-out format.

The winner of each Riders Cup race wins 250 points. The Riders Cup runs parallel to the Red Bull Crashed Ice competitions — where the winner of each race in the sport’s elite competition is awarded 1,000 points. The total number of points from both series are tabulated to determine the overall Ice Cross Downhill World Champion. This year, for the first time, the points will also be used to determine an European champion and a North American champion.

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(L-R) Mikael Andersson of Sweden, Andrej Lavrov of Russia, Khariton Vlasov of Russia and Adam Horst of Canada crossing the finish line at the finals of at Red Bull Crashed Ice, the Ice Cross Downhill World Championship, in Helsinki / Espoo, Finland on February 1, 2014.
Photo Credit: Sebastian Marko

“The Riders Cup is designed to give as many athletes as possible a taste of Ice Cross Downhill,” said Reed Whiting, member of the newly created All Terrain Skate Cross (ATSX) International Federation’s executive board. “It’s an increasingly popular competition that grew from the desire by athletes around the world for more opportunities to race. It’s something that was close to the hearts of both the best downhill racers as well as many others who wanted to give the sport a try. The Riders Cup is their chance.”

The European leg of the Riders Cup kicks off on December 18/19 in Wagrain-Kleinarl, Austria, where thousands of spectators cheered the athletes at the inaugural race there last season. The second Riders Cup stop is in Avoriaz, France on January 15/16 and the third stop is in Rautalampi, Finland a week later on January 22/23. The tour then moves to North America with a stop in Bathurst, NB, Canada on February 5/6, then Sherbrooke, QC, Canada on February 12/13 before the season finale in Mont du Lac, Wisconsin, USA on February 19/20.

Image & Style Magazine
Marco Dallago of Austria leads ahead of Pacome Schmitt of France, Cameron Naasz of the United States and Khariton Vlasov of Russia during the finals of the Red Bull Crashed Ice, the Ice Cross Downhill World Championship, in Helsinki / Espoo, Finland on February 1, 2014.
Photo Credit: Joerg Mitter

There will be four Red Bull Crashed Ice stops this season: in Québec City, Canada, Germany, a first-ever stop in Jyväskylä-Laajis, Finland, and a return to Saint Paul, Minnesota – USA for the fifth straight season. New this season is a Women’s World Championship with athletes competing at all four Red Bull Crashed Ice races.

Athletes will able to register for each and every Riders Cup event to earn points and get experience in the high-speed downhill sport before racing at a Red Bull Crashed Ice event. The only way athletes can qualify to participate in a Red Bull Crashed Ice event is to win points in the Ice Cross Downhill World rankings.

Riders Cup 2015/16 Race Calendar:

DEC. 18/19 Wagrain-Kleinarl, Austria

JAN. 15/16 Avoriaz, France

JAN. 22/23 Rautalampi, Finland

FEB. 5/6 Bathurst, NB, Canada

FEB. 12/13 Sherbrooke, QC, Canada

FEB. 19/20 Mont du Lac, WI, United States