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2X Maryhill #1 Qualifier Martin Siegrist prolbably won't need the "Last Chance Race".  Photo John Allen
 

The 2009 Maryhill Festival of Speed will feature more opportunities for Downhill Skateboarders to race than ever before. A new “Last Chance Race” will be held on Saturday afternoon to give 48 competitors a last chance to get into the “Open Final” field of 96 starters.

The race will give those who were unable to make it into the “Open Final” on qualifying time a last chance.  It will also give slower competitors the opportunity to gain valuable racing experience on the famed Maryhill track.


 

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In previous years, everyone received two qualifying runs.  Each skaters best qualifying  time counted and the fastest 96 got to race in the "Open Final".  Those who were slower than 96th were eliminated and unable to race.  In 2008, 151 racers made qualifying runs with the 55 slowest qualifiers never able to compete in a race   Maryhill promoter John Ozman came to the IGSA and asked for a revised format where more people could actually race.  Their solution is the “Last Chance Race”.

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Switzer & Reimer battling in the final corner at Maryhill 08'.  Photo John Allen

For 2009, Downhill Skateboarding entries are being capped at 160 riders.  With the new format, those who qualify in positions 1-92 automatically advance into the main event.  Those who qualify in positions 93-140 will earn a starting spot in the “Last Chance Race”.  The top four finishers in Saturday’s “Last Chance Race” will then be placed into the starting field of the “Open Final”.  The new format will allow 44 additional competitors the opportunity to actually race at Maryhill.
 
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Product tosses keep the spectators entertained between rounds.  Photo John Allen
 
“The challenge we faced is how could we give more people the opportunity to race when Sunday’s event schedule is already full and there is no time for an additional race”, said IGSA President Marcus Rietema.  “By tweaking the qualifying schedule, we were able to make room for the Last Chance Race on Saturday afternoon.  We’re excited that we found a way to give more skaters the opportunity to race.”

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Kyle Holland flying through Cowzer Corner.  Photo John Allen

 
Priority registration for the Maryhill Festval of Speed begins on June 21st and open registration begins on July 1st.  Last years event sold out in only seven hours.  To register go to www.MaryhillFestivalOfSpeed.com.
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