Brent Remley/Hangman Productions photo
American aces have been racing for a few years in the Ice Cross Downhill World Championship, but they were hoping that hard training in the off-season and a ferocious dedication to the sport would pay off in Saint P
The capital of Minnesota kicked off the Red Bull Crashed Ice season on the frozen banks of the Mississippi River on January 24.
American aces have been racing for a few years in the Ice Cross Downhill World Championship, but they were hoping that hard training in the off-season and a ferocious dedication to the sport would pay off in Saint Paul at the inaugural event of the season. With local hero Cameron Naasz, a native of Minnesota, having pushed the boundaries of the sport and almost clinched the title in 2014, and the likes of Canadian Scott Croxall and the defending champion, Marco Dallago, of Austria, lacing up for action, it promised to be another year of fierce competition.
For the past three winters, Saint Paul has hosted the ice cross downhill competition, with a huge crowd of more than 100,000 people converging under the gaze of the imposing Cathedral of Saint Paul. Crowds have witnessed the high-speed action that features skaters competing in four-man heats in a race to the bottom of a long ice track full of obstacles. The sport appeals to what many Americans like most in sports — a physically challenging, rough, tough sport coupled with high-speed action and agility. Americans have done surprisingly well as neophytes in their first few years in the 15-year-old sport, despite having far less experience than established nations like Canada, Finland, Germany, Switzerland and the Czech Republic.
The 2015 track began in front of the Cathedral of Saint Paul with the riders propelled over a bridge. Their skills were put to the test, as the skaters needed to build momentum to face the obstacles, the last banked corner and the final sprint to the finish line. Hangman Productions out of Vancouver, BC, Canada erected the track. Created in 2001 by a group of friends focused primarily on the conceptualization, development and execution of professional action sports events, Red Bulls Sponsored Crashed Ice was the perfect event.
Hangman Productions needed a crane to fit all of its special requirements. Hayden-Murphy out of Bloomington, Minn., rents a wide range of equipment from Manitou heavy telescopic handlers, Manitou rotating telescopic handlers, 85 to 710-ton (77 to 644 t) Manitowoc crawler cranes, 30 to 150-ton (27 to 136 t) Grove rough terrain cranes, 45 to 120 ton (40.8 to 108 t)?Mantis hydraulic telescopic cranes, 15 to 25-ton (13 to 22 t) Grove carry deck cranes, Link-Belt hydraulic excavators, Allied hydraulic hammers, Wirtgen mills and reclaimers, Hamm compaction rollers (smooth drum, pad drum, pneumatic and double drum rollers), Kleemann crusher and screens, Doppstadt grinders, shreaders and trommel screens. Hangman Productions requested the Manitou 2540P rotating telescopic handler with 8800-lb. (3,992 kg) lifting capacity.
“The Manitou worked great for our purpose here, which was the top tower for a cable camera used to film the RedBull Crashed Ice event in Saint Paul, Minn. We needed to use this particular machine for the small size it is and the maximum height reach to avoid obstacles down hill from this position. After using the particular Manitou, I will most defiantly source this machine for future jobs and uses. Judi Palmstein at Hayden-Murphy was great to work with,” said Jason Shields, event site coordinator of Hangman Productions, Vancouver, BC, Canada.