REDBULL CRASHED ICE GOING DOWN THIS WEEKEND

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For the past few weeks there has been a team of experts crawling all over the River Valley building what looks like a bobsled track set to “maximum danger.” Now dozens of athletes from around the world are descending on Edmonton, ready to put on what promises to be a hell of a free show for all in attendance.

The World Championship of the Red Bull Crashed Ice is drawing near.

After the final qualifying races in Helsinki and Belfast, the Crashed Ice world is descending on Edmonton and readying themselves for the World Finals. Let’s let the official Red Bull Crashed Ice website walk us through how this is shaking out:

Canada’s Scott Croxall is in the driver’s seat going into the 2015 Ice Cross Downhill World Championship showdown in Edmonton after he jumped into the overall lead ahead of his brother Kyle with emphatic victories in the last two major Red Bull Crashed Ice races in Helsinki and Belfast as well as winning the last Riders Cup event in Jyväskylâ. 

But the 2015 world championship battle is still far from settled with a total of five racers – including two former world champions – still in the title hunt of the world’s fastest sport on skates as it moves to its traditional finale in Canada. After nine straight years in Quebec City, this season’s showdown competition will be held in the western city of Edmonton on a high-speed track, with massive drops, gaps, steps and hairpin turns built in the city centre.

TIMES AND WHAT NOT

Map

The races begin at 3 PM and the team contests will run from 7 PM to 10 PM on Saturday. The doors open for the main event on Saturday at 4 PM and will wrap up at 10 PM ish. There are going to be numerous events around Edmonton at the same time including the Farewell to Winter patio party at over 30 venues around town which are listed at the Explore Edmonton website here.

JSBM will be live tweeting the event and then trundling down to the Pint Downtown to have a wee nip of the creature afterwards to recover from the excitement of screaming “FASTER BUT FASTER SAFELY PLEASE COMPETITORS” and waving their home made signs. It promises to be a grand occasion.

The Edmonton Journal has a great FAQ page up here.

THE BALL IS IN OUR COURT

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Event organizers estimated the crowd at the semi finals in Belfast to be 24,000 people. It will be interesting to see how our fellow citizens – famous for turning out in droves for big time events over the years – will take to the inaugural Crashed Ice event in Edmonton.

“Easy for you to say Wanye, you are half way to hell working on God knows what these days. It ain’t that easy to just pick up and go down to the Shaw Convention Centre and watch a free event.” Well actually it is. 

Let’s go through some basic point-counterpoints.

Point: “It costs too much.” 

Counterpoint: The event is completely free.

Point: “The weather will be so cold I will probably freeze to the track” 

Counterpoint: Actually according to Weather Canada it is going to be a balmy 12 degrees on Saturday. Ever watch Crashed Ice in a bikini? Now could be your chance.

Point: “Years of watching the Oilers have made me allergic to watching anything remotely entertaining on ice” Counterpoint: Hmm. You may have me on that one.

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There hasn’t been this much activity on the banks of the North Saskatchewan River since Edmonton’s coal mine industry shut in the early 1900s! Go take a look, enjoy the end of the Winter and smash back a Bud Light for your ol’ pal Wanye.