words: alex dehmel
…while germanys downhill elite was racing a super tight race on a small pathway somewhere in almost flat northern germany, i decided to start my euro tour with the lozio skateorum idf world qualifying race.
Because i could not find a ride, i took our good old opel yellow flash to his (probably) last big trip. there are some really nasty noises coming from the gearbox but i already drove to southern france and back with it. a mechanic told me that it might last for a bit longer( if i’m lucky). i hope it makes it all the way down to portugal and back before the german championships in insul.
On friday morning i got up at 4am and started my journey. i arrived at the event right after lunch and got three freeride runs down the hill before it started. lozio is located up in the southern alps, not far from the famous lago di garda. i was pretty stoked to race on a alpine road with lots of haripins and technical sections after racing only on full tuck german racetracks the last weeks..
The road was pretty narrow and after the first few sweepers, you were heading into a tigh leftie thats even tighter at the exit at around 65kph. most of the time there was a big wet patch right close before the apex which made it really hard to take a fast line. you might be able to stick it when it’s dry but with the small inside river it was a real challenge and the point where the pack was dividing. after a couple more sweepers you were facing a really tight left hairpin which is almost flat in the exit, making it necessary to push out. if you have pushed hard enough, you were able to slide a bit for the right hairpin which followed after approximately 50m. basically the corners repeated themselves after this point. the second fast left was a bit wider, so it wes no problem to stick it at full speed and the left hairpin was steeper so you did not have to push.
The organizors charlie and wolf did a really great job, trying to do everything for the riders to feel comfortable. good food is obligatory in italy and so it was at the race. the menu included a great breakfast, awesome pasta for lunch and a delicious bbq at night. of course the best cheese, vino rosso and cafe were available at any time of the day!
On saturday we did timed qualifying in the morning and raceing after lunch. i was really stoked to see the italian young guns shredding hard. after two timed runs i was leading followed by giorgio from piermont.
the race was run with a 32 man bracket. again i was lucky to take the first place, too bad that almost all the fast guys were fighting a super close and intense race on a shitty path at the same time..
because the international race was done by saturday afternoon, we could party hard at night and freeride the whole sunday, while the italians were doing the italian champs.
Hung over but happy and stoked i left the event on sunday afternoon. i met many old friends and made even more new friends. it is really cool to see how the italian scene evolved in the last years and i will be back for sure to do some freeriding with my new friends.
Next stop: downhill academy, hosted by my good friends of landyachtz europe and the alsace downhill federation. i will be hanging out there until me and leon leave on friday to help stephan to set up almabtrieb.