Does Red Bull really give you wings? Eighteen-year-old Carihi grad Damon Marriott-Spencer is about to find out the hard way.
On Dec. 1 he will be hurtling down a 500-metre Red Bull Crashed Ice track in Niagara Falls, Ontario.
Damon, whose buddies are green with envy, says his introduction to the extreme sport is going to be a blast … “I just have to stay on my feet.”
After entering his name online Damon was one of 100 B.C. men and 20 women picked by lottery to attend a Crashed Ice qualifying event in Richmond Oct. 20. Competing on a flat ice surface Damon’s speed, skill, agility and strength earned him a chance to rocket to the bottom of the massive ice course in Niagara Falls.
Damon, who works at the skate rental shop at Strathcona Gardens, says he has been playing hockey for 12 years including with the midget Seals house team and the midget Tyee rep team. He says his mountain biking and skiing a skills are also coming in handy as he trains for his one chance at extreme fame … or pain.
“At the rink I have lots of time to practice hard skating, jumping, turns and sliding on my belly.” He says the Niagara track drops 40 metres from gate to finish and he could attain speeds in excess of 70 kilometres per hour. He says he’ll be in full hockey gear “so if I hit the wall I won’t die.”
Damon says he’ll have two runs to carve a place in Red Bull history. If he places in the top 64 Canadian men and 16 women he will have earned a berth in the Red Bull season finale race in Quebec City in March.
Since the first ever race back in 2000 Red Bull Crashed Iced downhill racing has soared in popularity with more than 200,000 spectators watching four races in Europe and North America this year.
Damon, the youngest B.C. competitor, says Red Bull is paying the whole shot for his trip and stay in Niagara Falls “and I’m not even a Red Bull drinker.” That could change on race day.