March 13, 2015 4:01 pm
Updated: March 14, 2015 2:26 pm

Warm weather no match for Red Bull Crashed Ice races


WATCH ABOVE: Margeaux Morin is live at the Crashed Ice track with a check on the weather conditions and how fans are feeling.

EDMONTON – The Crashed Ice track in Edmonton’s River Valley was covered with a white tarp Friday afternoon, as organizers rescheduled afternoon races.

The Elimination Round – originally set to take place between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. – was moved to 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

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The Team Competition Qualifiers were also pushed back. They were originally scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. but instead ran 8:30 – 9:30 p.m.

The Team Competition Finals ran 10 p.m. to 11 p.m. During that event, six athletes raced at the same time.

“If it’s soft it’s really dangerous for the ankles so we had to wait until the ice was really hard again,” said Claudio Caluori with Red Bull Crashed Ice. “They were working well on the track and everybody is surprised how good the ice is right now.”

Even with the delays, the spectator areas were packed with fans Friday evening.

READ MORE: Could warm weather in Edmonton melt Crashed Ice? 

On Monday, a track designer for the international sporting event said the crew wasn’t overly concerned about the weather.

“We manufacture the ice and have advanced chilling systems in place to keep the track frozen even if it gets warm outside,” said Andrew Markey of Hangman Productions. “We also cover certain parts of the ice that are south facing and receive high sun exposure to make sure we’re good to go for the event.”

Crashed Ice has a team of 12 ice-makers that spray water in a fine mist onto refrigerated mats 24-hours a day for six days to create and keep up the ice surface.

Click here to watch Red Bull video of the athletes on the track on Thursday.

Adam Horst, a veteran Crashed Ice competitor, says in every city it’s all about getting a handle on the track no matter what the conditions are.

“You just really have to be prepared for the ice,” explains Horst.

“We’ve kind of dealt with this the whole tour this year. It seems like everywhere we go it’s been warm.”

In milder conditions, Horst says athletes just have to prepare for slower race results.

“You know that when you start your first run, by the time you’re done, your times are going to be slower because the ice gets heavier and more slush and more holes. You just kind of go with it.”

To adjust, he won’t keep his skates as sharp as he would in colder temperatures.

“It’s harder when the ice is softer,” he admits. “Everything is designed on these tracks with flow. When you’re coming into a feature, it’s designed to have speed coming into it. When it’s like this, it’s a little harder because you can’t carry your speed as much. Sometimes it makes obstacles… you can’t jump that you normally could. You really have to learn how to find more speed on the track in different lanes and such.”

WATCH: Red Bull Crashed Ice track from POV of an athlete 

Still, Horst likes the Edmonton track.

“I think it’s a great track. They didn’t get too crazy with any of the new technical stuff, but it is fast.”

The hockey and motocross athlete, who hails from Fort St. John, B.C., has competed in Crashed Ice seven times.

“It’s been an amazing adventure.”

© 2015 Shaw Media

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