Red Bull Crashed Ice returns to the long and natural ice track in Finland
Red Bull Crashed Ice will return for the fourth time to the natural track of Jyväskylä, which is also the longest track of the season, and one which has established itself as a classic stop on the tour. The track has seen some fierce battles over the last few years, and the rough natural ice surface always presents a challenge to the skaters.
Being the only major stop on a natural ice track, the riders will have to adjust to the small – but important – differences of racing on the natural ice after the season opener was held on an artificial ice track built in Yokohama. In general, natural ice tracks tend to be bumpier and invariably more challenging, with a greater variation of the ice conditions from the start high up on the mountains to the finish line down in the valleys, than the more perfect and consistent ice conditions throughout created by cooling systems that are buried beneath the artificial ice tracks.
Spectacular jumps, wild crashes, constant passing and the surprising early exits of the sport's biggest stars made this one of the most exciting stops ever in 2017/18, and more drama is expected when the world's best Ice Cross Downhill skaters return on 2 February.
The home favourite at this stop will certainly be Mirko Lahti, who moves exclusively up to the men's category after emphatically securing two Junior World Championship titles in a row.