We couldn’t have asked for a nicer day at this year’s Downeast Freestyle Loppet! Temps were in the 20s by race time, there was bluebird sky, and the recent dusting of snow put enough moisture back into the snowmaking loop for perfect corduroy that held up all day long. The Downest Racing Team and the Quarry Road Trails Staff & Volunteers collaborated very nicely to host an excellent event.
Quarry Road added some easy terrain to their snowmaking loop this winter, providing a longer reprieve before the long climbing section. The feed station was on this new section at the top of the Doddle Bug Trail, allowing racers to take their time drinking while they glided back down to the stadium. Downeast Racing Team volunteers returned the bottles to the table for later feeds. Many of the skiers remarked the course was quite challenging, but very fun and it skied really well. There were lots of smiles and long conversations in the finish area – clearly the participants enjoyed themselves and had a great time bonding over post race stories.
This year’s event saw 50% more skiers than last year. Skiers from all over New England and New York, including skiers from Rochester, NY, the NYC suburbs and Caribou, ME participated in this year’s event. Bruce Katz and Bill Dougherty continued their perfect attendance streak in this year’s NENSA Marathon Series. There were lots of prizes for the overall and age group podiums, including some very classy mugs. A big thank you to the Downeast Racing Team and Quarry Road Trails for making this event happen in a low snow year. This is an awesome event with a fun atmosphere and certainly one to add to your personal race calendar for next year!