Event Calendar



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Inline Downhill ... News and information about Inline Downhill Skating
(News is listed in reverse chronological .)

Nov. 23, 2006
Engineer Wins Downhill
David Lambert proved quickest in the turns and so won the 2006 North American Downhill Championships last weekend in San Dimas, CA.
Go to more info.

Israelis Hold Downhill Championships
Israeli skaters held their first official Downhill Championships in the Pisgat Ze'ev section of Jerusalem last Friday. Aside from downhill racing, the event featured a speed slalom competition and an uphill race. The top climber, Boaz Arad, sent us a report complete with photos. (Go to Arad's report.) (April 19, 2006)

Big Guy Dominates Calif. Downhill No. 1 - Size isn't everything in downhill racing. The sports also demands skill, strategy and the ability to break into a sprint when you're already going to fast. But it may have helped George Merkert on Sunday when he won the first stage of the California Downhill Series in San Dimas, Calif. (Go to Mark Henley's report.) (Jan. 30, 2006)

Downhill Racers Grab TV Spotlight in La-la Land - Downhill racing hasn't gotten much TV time since the late-1990s when it lost its short-lived berth on the X Games. But it will be back on the tube this week in Los Angeles. The LTN cable show Dialed In will zoom in on downhill racing at 10:30 p.m. (PST) Wednesday. The show will feature the recent California Downhill Series event in San Dimas. Many of California's top downhill athletes competed in the event on inline skates, luge, skateboards and gravity bikes. (Go to announcement.) (Nov. 28, 2005)

Bont Unveils Design for 7-Wheel Skate - The Australian skate maker Bont is thinking outside the box again. Today it unveiled a design for a 7-wheel concept skate for downhill skating. The skate has two rows of offset wheels: four on the inside, three on the outside. "More wheels equal more roll," a smoother ride and a higher top-end speed, said marketing director Alexander Bont. ... But will the skate ever be built? Don't count on it, Bont says. "We're just exploring possibilities." (Go to Bont's announcement.) (Nov. 23, 2005)

Software Engineer Wins Final Race of Downhill Series - Dave Lambert of Castro Valley, Calif., won the final race of the California Downhill Series in San Dimas. The software engineer drafted part way down the steep racecourse Saturday before passing to take the win. ... Finishing in second was Tim Huber of Southern California. Mark Henley of Redwood City edged out Scott Peer at the finish line to take third. Nevertheless, Peer finished the 6-event race series in first place. (Go to Henley's race report.)

Astrophysicist Wins World Downhill Cup in Ohio - Wearing skates with six 80mm wheels, Warren Focke won Sunday's Inline Downhill World Cup in Bainbridge, Ohio. Focke, an astrophysicist at Stanford's linear accelerator in Menlo Park, Calif., won two of the three heats and finished second in the other. Scott Peer took the silver medal; Mark Henley, the bronze. ... Focke used a frame with five 90 mm wheels in one of the qualifying heats but reverted to his 80mm frame for the finals. He said the bigger wheels felt faster but made braking more difficult. (Go to Mark Henley's race report.) (Oct. 19, 2005)

Ohio to Host Final Event of 2005 Downhill World Cup - Downhill racers from around the world will converge on Bainbridge, Ohio, this October for the final event of the 2005 World Cup. The event will feature inline skates, skateboards, gravity bikes and street luge -- all going insanely fast down the appropriately named Jester Hill. "This hill is typically known for high speeds (55-plus mph)," says downhill skater Mark Henley. ... Demon Promotions is organizing the event (Oct. 14-16) under the auspices of the International Gravity Sports Association. (Here's the event announcement.) (Aug. 16, 2005)

Scott Peer Wins 1st Downhill World Cup of 2005 - Scott Peer won the inline downhill event at last weekend's World Cup USA in Barrett Junction, Calif. Peer, 47, is the third ranked inline downhill racer in the world and an engineer at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. ... George Merkert finished behind him to take the silver; Warren Fockes took the bronze. ... The event is one of three World Cups scheduled this year by the International Gravity Sports Association. The other two are in Sweden and Germany. (Here's Mark Henley's report on the race.) (June 7, 2005)

Downhill Skaters to Fly in Gravity World Cup This Weekend in California - Many of the best downhill skaters in the world will be competing Saturday and Sunday in the International Gravity Sports Association's World Cup USA in Barrett Junction, Calif. The event will also feature downhill skateboarding, street luge and gravity bikes. Qualifying heats will be Saturday; finals on Sunday. Barrett Junction is 20 miles east of El Cajon on Highway 94. ... Here's the association's not so reassuring description of the 1.5 mile racecourse: "The road starts out with a series of corners, including two hairpins, and finishes up with a long quarter-mile straightaway. Top speeds are in the 55 mph range. The road surface is rough." (Here's the IGSA's event calendar.) (June 3, 2005)

San Francisco Skater Rolls to Victory in California Downhill - Mark Henley earned a perfect score Saturday to win the inline event of California Downhill No. 4. The San Francisco skater finished first in all three heats of the event. Ranked fifth in the world last year, Henley employed fierce sprints at the bottom of each downhill to edge out the competition. ... Scott Peer finished second; Warren Focke, third. ... The event was held at Bonelli Park in San Dimas under the auspices of the International Gravity Sports Association. (Here's the association's web site.) (April 26, 2005)

California Downhill Championships Continues April 23 in San Dimas - The fourth race of the 2005 California Championship Gravity Racing Series will be held April 23rd at Frank Bonelli Park in San Dimas, east of Los Angeles. Events will include downhill inline, downhill skateboard, classic luge, street luge and gravity bike. All races will count toward International Gravity Sports Association world rankings. (Click here for more info.) (April 14, 2005)

France to Host 2005 World Downhill Championships - The International Roller Sports Federation has picked the city of Lyon in east-central France to host the sixth annual World Inline Downhill Championships. The event will be July 8-10. ... Last year, Oscar Galliazzo of Italy and Severine Thomas of France won the championships, which were held in Germany. No U.S. skaters competed. (Here's the new Planet Inline Downhill department!) March 28, 2005

50-something Visual Effects Wizard Wins Another Downhill Event - George Merkert earned a near perfect score on his way to winning the inline event at the California Downhill Series No. 3. The 53-year-old visual effects specialist from Hollywood finished first in two of the three heats, second in the other, to earn a score of 4. (Racers are awarded points equal to their placement in each heat. Low score wins.) The event was held in the rain on March 13th in San Dimas, Calif. Scott Peer finished second with 7 points; Mark Henley finished third with 9. Merkert is ranked sixth in the world of inline downhill racing. (Click for a nice photo of inline downhill racers from 2003 San Francisco Gravity Festival.) March 26, 2005

Thrills and Spills From the Gravity Racing Series - The 2005 California Championship Gravity Racing season got underway last weekend with contestants flying down a steep hill in San Dimas, Calif., on skates, skateboards, luge and BMX bicycles. Tim Huber won the inline downhill. George Merkert, ranked sixth in the world last year, didn't fare so well. He crashed twice. After the race, Bont's ubiquitous Glenn Koshi asked him how he was feeling. "Beat, man, like I feel beat," he said in classic Californian. Koshi posted his report on the race on the Bont site. (January 19, 2005)

Related Reading:

The Inline Downhill page of UniverSkate

The International Gravity Sports Association

The Yahoo Downhill Skating Group


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