Eastbourne, England- The world’s top downhill skateboarders are locked in a four-way dogfight to win this years International Gravity Sports Association (IGSA) World Cup Series title. Next stop, Eastbourne! The third annual Eastbourne Speed Days World Cup race is taking place this weekend, August 21-23 on the Southern coast of England.
After three rounds of the eight race 2009 IGSA World Cup Series, Canadian Mischo Erban is leading the points standings followed by fellow Canadians 2008 Series Champion Scoot Smith in second and Patrick Switzer in third. Australian Jackson Shapiera is currently sitting fourth in points. All four of them will be competing at this weekends Speed Days event in Eastbourne.
Mischo hungry for a World Cup win. Photo Marcus Rietema
Mischo Erban (Vernon, BC, Canada)- Currently Erban sits atop the points standings after a slew of consistent finishes. He finished in fourth place at the opening race in Peyragudes, France after qualifying first. At the second race in Argonay, France he was locked in a head to head battle with last years Eastbourne winner Smith. Scoot ultimately prevailed but Mischo’s second place felt like a victory to him after it was revealed he damaged an axle during the morning warm up and had to deal with an ill handling skateboard the entire day. He finished eighth at the last round in Padova, Italy. Erban comes into this weekend’s Speed Days hungry for his first World Cup victory of the season.
Scoot Smith (Pendor Harbour, BC, Canada)- Scoot has found it difficult to match the consistency he displayed in 2008 that led him to the World Cup Series title. He’s still managed to fight and claw his way to second in the overall standings. Smith’s title defense got off to a rocky start when he crashed out at Peyragudes and had to settle for 14th place. He found it difficult to find a good set up in qualifying at Argonay and started the race from the number seven position. Once the race got underway, Scoot found his trademark speed and defeated a whole slew of fast riders to earn the victory. At the Padova Grand Prix he won the Consolation Final and was credited with fifth. He is poised and seems ready to turn it on and earn his second victory of the season at Eastbourne.
Patrick Switzer finished second at the last World Cup in Italy. Photo Marcus Rietema
Patrick Switzer (Toronto, Canada)- 2009 is Switzer’s first year competing on the World Cup Series tour and is in the thick of the points battle. Like Smith, Peyragudes was also a race he would prefer to forget. He crashed out in the quarter finals and wound up in 13th place. At the second round in Argonay, Switzer settled down and found his consistency. He finished a solid fourth and gained a lot of confidence and experience along the way. Switzer took it up another notch at Padova where he earned his first ever World Cup podium finish with a second. Could Eastbourne be the site of his first World Cup victory? He won a smaller national level event in Austria two weeks ago and is looking really strong.
Jackson Shapiera (Sydney, Australia)- Jacko, as his friends call him is on his second year of the tour and finds himself fourth in the standings coming into Eastbourne after a string of consistent finishes. The likeable Aussie has finishes of eighth, 19th and tenth so far this season plus a second place in the Austrian National. Expect him to be in the thick of things in Eastbourne.
Now in it’s third year, Eastbourne Speed Days has solidified its’ place on the IGSA World Cup Series schedule and after many improvements over the past two years, is now attracting the world’s best downhill skateboarders to the seaside resort. Practice and qualifying will be held Friday and Saturday. Final eliminations will be held on Sunday.
For additional information go to www.gofastspeeddays.com