Things are going downhill

Three series openers at the DMF

Almost traditionally, several downhill series start off their season at the iXS Dirt Masters Festival. And this year, the opening races of the iXS Downhill Cup, the PROPAIN Rookies Cup and the VPACE Kids Cup will once again take place in Winterberg.

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The iXS Dirt Masters Festival has been called Europe's biggest gravity festival for a long time. Even though the programme is opening up more and more and nowadays not only gravity sports are shown, the downhill-related disciplines are still the main component. Not at least because of the amount of competitors within these disciplines.

Rosa Zierl - RDC Winterberg 2022 Rosa Zierl - RDC Winterberg 2022

Like it has been for a few years now, the rookie events will kick off on Thursday. The now retitled PROPAIN Rookies Cup has been an integral part of the Dirt Masters Festival since 2009 and has already given many future stars the platform for their first racing experiences. Names like Valentina Höll (AUT) or Max Hartenstern (GER) started their careers here and noe they belong to the world elite. So if you want to take a look into the future, you can convince yourself at this race of the level of the young athletes.

Valentina Höll - RDC Winterberg 2015 © extreme-pics / Thomas Dietze Valentina Höll - RDC Winterberg 2015 © extreme-pics / Thomas Dietze

The VPACE Kids Cup will also take place on Thursday for the youngest racers. This race series offers a format for children from the age of five, where they can gain their first competitive experience on a short downhill course. Even if the programme with track walk, training and race run is very similar to proper races, fun is always in the spotlight here. In the end, everyone wins, but some also win bronze, silver and gold medals. The mode will be slightly changed in the upcoming season, so that there will only be one track and one timed run. The aim of this is to take out some of the stress after last year's experience and to adapt the format more to the other race series.

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After the young riders had their big show on thursday, the iXS Downhill Cup, which runs over three days, will start on Friday. This year you can expect many well-known names on the starting list, because the World Cup still hasn't started at this time. Some big teams have already shown their interest and so the history of top athletes at the iXS Dirt Masters will continue. We are excited to see who will join the long list of world elite riders this time. Names like Gee Atherton (GBR), Aaron Gwin (USA), Mick Hannah (AUS), Sam Blenkinsop (NZL), Andrew Neethling (RSA), Marcelo Gutierrez (COL), Brook MacDonald (NZL), Sabrina Jonnier (FRA), Tahnée Seagrave (GBR) and Tracey Hannah (AUS) have already been part of the festival.

Gee Atherton - GDC Winterberg 2013 © extreme-pics / Thomas Dietze Gee Atherton - GDC Winterberg 2013 © extreme-pics / Thomas Dietze

In any case, spectators should definitely make their way to the downhill course, because the offered racing will be first class. While the high level of the junior races will leave the spectators speechless, the iXS Downhill Cup will provide a bit of a World Cup feeling as the stars will deliver high class action sports to the fans.

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