Saturday, March 13, 2010

2nd Annual Double Down Hoe Down MTB DH Race

The 2nd Annual Double Down Hoe Down presented by WheelSport East is scheduled for March 20th and 21st. Registration is now open for the annual 2 day DH on 2 separate courses at Spokane, Washington's Beacon Hill. This USA Cycling Sanctioned event will kick off the Pacific Northwest racing scene by offering a unique venue. I consider Beacon Hill to be the 'Spring Training' of DH racing because they provide no shuttles - You push your bike up just as hard as you pedal your bike down. This race is fantastic on so many levels, let me explain.
This race is a combined effort between 2 shops- Chris Andreasen, Race Organizer and Owner of the Bike Hub really impressed a lot of racers last year. Handling a race is not easy, your ear literally falls off from the never ending questions, usually repeating the same 'rule' twice. Chris loves to race his bike and it shows through this event. But without Josh and Chris over at Wheelsport East this event wouldn't run straight. It's purely a very simple race. No shuttles (or for my UK friends 'uplifts'). You hike 20-25 minutes up for a great 4 min ride down. I enjoy it because you get to hit the track in sections, and practice each one until your line feels right and then you walk up to the top and rip a full run. There are jumps, berms, drops, huge granite rocks, technical sections, wide open sections and for the expert/pro's - there's a grand finale rock garden that packs the crowds's seriously like being in Europe. Cowbells are blazing loud in this zone! For those of you just starting out to race - Beginners and Sports, you get a nice safe track to the bottom.
All I can say is the racing experience is awesome at the Double Down Hoe Down. The area to ride is massive with XC trails, DH/FR trails and tons of dirt jumps - you can bring a whole quiver and everything will get used - there are lots of fun things around Spokane to stop and session. Hanging out at the perfectly sculpted dirt jumps are Joe Perrizo and Skye Skillhammer who are throwing down a daily air show demonstration.
Practice starts Friday March 19th at 9am and ends at 5pm. Practice begins again 7:30am on both days and goes until 11am. The downhill race will start at noon on both days with awards promptly at 4pm or earlier. All racers must have a full faced helmet, no racer will be permitted to race with an open face, skate style helmet. So don't try. USA Cycling is strictly enforcing this rule this year.
It's a must see, must experience event if you love riding a bike. Entry is only $25 bucks per day. You can flash your USA Cycling License, but if your current permit isn't renewed - then your points get flushed. Make sure you have your current $60 permit if you're racing Expert or Pro classes. Day Permits are $5 bucks (per day/race) and will be sold on site at registration. Registration, Directions and Lodging information is on the All Gravity Series website here.
See ya in the hot seat!
-Mike 'northwestdhdad' Estes

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