Red Bull Crashed Ice will return to Saint Paul on January 19 and 20 to kick-off the 2017/2018 Ice Cross Downhill Championship. Set against the dramatic backdrop of the Cathedral of Saint Paul for the seventh time, the event returns to the formidable location with its established reputation as the longest and most-challenging track on the schedule. Saint Paul will be the first leg of the four-event world series that brings 64 men and 16 women together from around the world to compete for the chance to be crowned 2018 Ice Cross Downhill Champion. New to this year, in addition to free general admission, spectators now have the option to purchase premium-viewing tickets.
Starting atop the city’s iconic Cathedral, spectators will witness the Junior World Championship, Freestyle Show and Qualifiers for the world ranked athletes competing in two timed runs during day one (Friday, Jan 19) with the fastest athletes based off of their Friday times advancing to the Finals on day two (Saturday, Jan 20).
Four skaters will compete head-to-head down a 1,600-foot track consisting of hair-pin turns, vertical and banked walls, whoops and gaps at speeds nearing 50 mph. The first two male and female competitors, respectively, to cross the finish line advance to the next round until a Champion is crowned.
Cameron Naasz, who currently resides in Burnsville, Minn., will be back on home turf defending his 2017 World Champion title and attempting an unprecedented ‘three-peat’. 2016 and 2017 World Champion Jacqueline Legere of Canada will also be chasing her third consecutive Ice Cross Downhill Championship, going head-to-head with another Minnesota native, Amanda Trunzo.
“I’m definitely just as motivated as in the past two years and certainly don’t think a three-peat is impossible,” said local hero Naasz, the first man in the history of the sport to win back-to-back world championships in 2016 and 2017.
The Ice Cross Downhill World Championship will feature nine stages in its 2017/18 season, including four major Red Bull Crashed Ice races and five Riders Cup races. The Juniors World Championship will be back for a second season after its successful debut last year, a feeder competition that helps younger racers gain invaluable experience racing down the tracks under the spotlight and pressure of performing in front of large crowds.