Demons of Downhill 2005

Demons of Downhill 2005

Demons of Downhill

Bainbridge, Ohio

Bainbridge is a one traffic light, one Dairy Queen town, on route 50 about an hour east of Cincinnati. Every year, towards the end of October a small street fair is held, called the Festival of Leaves. The festival has a lot of local crafts, a ton of food vendors, and some kiddie rides. Quite a lot of people check out the festival through out the weekend. Unfortunately none of them knew about the race. The festival is held to celebrate the turning of the leaves. I don't know if it was the warmer weather, but the leaves hadn't really started to change yet.

The course is just up the road from the only traffic light in town. The course starts with a big long left handed sweeper. The sweeper ends with a sharp right handed turn. This is the hardest corner on the course, and braking is absolutely required. From here to the chicane, is a long high speed straight section. Well not exactly straight, there are shallow curves and gentle rises and dips, that makes it a lot of fun to shoot down. Speeds approach 70 MPH as you enter the chicane. A few people made it through the chicane without braking, but most people at least tapped their brakes. Exiting the chicane leads to another chicane, but speeds have dropped enough to make it through without braking. From the last chicane to the finished is a long, draft worthy, flat section. There is one small rise that can steal a lot of speed.

The course in Google Maps.

Friday, October 14

We were supposed to get started around 9:30, but things were running a bit late, as we were waiting for Road Closed signs. Meanwhile I got registered

and teched.

We finally had our rider's meeting

around 10:30. The Road Closed signs never did arrive, so around 11:00 we started to practice.

We used the truck to block the road at the bottom, and the riders to block the road at the top.

We got two solid hours of practice in before breaking for lunch. Because there weren't very many riders in yet, we got lots of practice runs. At lunch I skated down to the festival.

I got back to find out I missed Bob's run on his JetLuge.

It was only the first day of practice, and yet several people were already making changes to their boards.

During the afternoon session, we got ride after ride in. Dean claims we got 22 runs in, most of them in the afternoon. There were only about 20 riders or so, the runs were over fairly quickly. We occasionally had to wait for the course to be rebuilt after some one wrecked into the hay bales.

After a long day of practice, and a short soak in the hotel hot tub, a bunch of us walked over to AppleBee's for dinner. Turns out it was also Rian James' brithday.

His Mom had several cakes made.

During dinner we coopted one of the bar's tvs and showed some videos shot during the day.

One of the past times of any skateboarder, is stickering everything. The tradition continued, mostly with Kryptonics stickers. Many of the stickers ended up on AppleBee's property, but a few found their way onto people's backs

or other body parts.

Saturday, October 15

I am not sure what time we were scheduled to start, I rarely pay attention to schedules anymore. I figured I would try to get to the course the same time as the day before. I managed to show up around 9:45, minutes before the riders meetings.

We had a special visitor today.

Adam Colton, is skateboarding across the United States to raise money for a skateboard park in DC. He skated through Chilicothe on route 50 two or three days ago. But they decided to back track in their bus,

to spend part of the day with us. Check out his website

We spent the morning session practicing. But a few more people had shown up.

We had a few spectators to watch us start.

One thing we discovered is to not leave a hat on the fence post.

Apparently the cows didn't like the taste of the hat.

We had a short break for lunch, to try and get back on schedule. I wandered across the street and had a sloppy joe from the Cheerleaders. Bob got out his Jet Luge again.

Bob has it set up to spew out a bunch of smoke.

I wasn't in the best position to get a good shot.

I swapped out my wheels as the inliners and skateboarders got their first qualifying run in. The buttboarders went up one the second truck. The skateboarders started their second qualifying run.

After the inliners, buttboarders ran their first qualifying run.

I got to the bottom, and ran into the Red Bull girls,

carrying ice cold Red Bull. The Gravity Bikes qualified with the buttboarders. People were allowed to free ride after each qualifiying run, unfortunately many of these people crashed, causing delays to rebuild the course.

The final discipline to qualify was Street Luge. We only had 19 lugers to qualify, and I was #16. It took a while before I had my chance. By the time it was my turn, we had 7 cars waiting for the road to reopen. Shortly before I left, one lady pulled around all of the stopped cars, and was glaring at the guys standing around. I got to the bottom, jumped on the truck. Someone said there is a car on the course, I looked up the hill and saw the lady flying down the course! Turns out she almost ran over Paul Busse, as he waited at the line, and follwed another luger down the course. The Sherrif stopped her half way down the course. The funny thing, she was asking him to get the police, and he informed her he was the Sherriff. He decided to let her go with a warning.

We finally finished qualifying and headed back to the hotel for the after party. Most of us trekked over to AppleBee's for dinner before the party. The party was held in the conference room of the hotel. We had two bands playing. The first band was a punk band.

Someone rolled a TV into the room and showed some videos, mostly of Bob's Jet Luge.

A trophy was awarded to the fastest qualifying time in all divisions. The honor went to Rian James.

The second band was a heavy metal band.

The hotel kicked us out of the room just after midnight, despite having the room reserved till 1. A lot of the party moved to Busse and Fryer's room.

But not through the front door.

Sunday, October 16

I don't know if holding the after party the day before the race is a good thing. On the other hand it is about the only way that everyone involved in the race will have a chance to attend the party. But it means either a late morning, or little sleep on race day. I thought we were only going to get one practice run in the morning, so I wanted to get to the course early, so I didn't miss it. While the sky was fairly clear, it was still very chilly. The sun started to rise over the mountain as our riders meeting started,

warming the place up. Marcus announced that he was wrapping up talks for the first World Cup race of 2006 to be held in Rio. There are also talks for a race in March of 2007 in Malaysia!

We practiced until lunch.

We got four runs in. After two and a half days of riding, there were some pretty happy campers.

We took a quick lunch break. I don't know why, but the cheerleaders didn't set up food today. I hope they made money the previous two days. Several of us skated into the festival to grab some food. When we got back Bob took his Jet Luge out for another spin.

After lunch Inliners

and standup

raced first. Standup had nine racers and raced in a dual format, with one heat having three riders. Street luge ran next. We had 19 racers. We ran a 16 man bracket, with three heats having 5 riders. The three fifth place riders then raced for 17-19 while the rest of the bracket raced to completion. That is the winners of each heat went on to race against winners of other heats, while the losers raced against other losers. In this way the top 16 riders each had 3 heats. McIntyre pulled off a win.


and gravity bikes

finished off the racing. There were five gravity bikes. They elected to run three heats grand prix style. There were nine buttboarders, so we ran a heat of 4 and a heat of 5. The top two of each heat would be in the finals, and the rest would be in the consolation. People were allowed to freeride when they weren't racing.

Fryer took top honors on the buttboard.

Racing was over, time to pack up and go home.

People started to pack up. Others got ready for the awards ceremony, apparently replacing their Abec 11 wheels with Kryptos.

For a change, the awards

were handed out in the sunlight. David Dean,

who promoted the race, started the ceremony.


Focke, Peer, Henley (yes that actually looks a lot like me, I was a standin for Peer, who had to catch his plane)

Gravity Bikes:

McIntyre, Kessler, Raimeriz


Fryer, James, Weber


Edstrand, Brunson, McKendry


McIntyre, Fryer, James

Quite a few people headed home after the awards ceremony. A few of us had flights out tomorrow, so we had one last dinner at AppleBee's. While we had fabulous weather, it was the smallest spectator turn out ever. The speeds were up, Rian clocked a 69.5 on his GPS. This road is a high speed road, and can be deceiving to beginners, fortunately there were no major injuries at the race. It was too bad we couldn't get any spectators from the festival.

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