Popular Event Back In Action After Weather-related Hiatus
~ by Bob Volpe ~
This Sunday (January 6), the first race of the 2019 Harry’s Roamers Ice Races, at Rainbow Fall Mountain Trout Ranch kicks off.
The occasion is being warmly welcomed by motorcycle and winter buffs, as the popular event was canceled last year due to exceptionally warm weather. That’s not the case for 2019, with conditions back to their frigid norm.
Every winter since 1966, motorcycle enthusiasts have gathered north of Woodland Park at Rainbow Falls Mountain Trout Ranch, to race on the ice. This year’s event is the 53rd annual Colorado State Championships Ice Racing Series. It features the state’s fastest professional and amateur racers on motorcycles, quads, mini bikes, and speedway bikes with or without studded tires in events throughout the day.
The racers include adults and children, and guys and gals.
Adult classifications (15 years or older) are broken down into four categories: studded tire motorcycle, bare tire motorcycle, studded quad and bare tire quad. For racers less than 14 years of age there are mini-quad and mini-bike studded and bare tire classifications.
Last year, due to unexpected warm weather, the races had to be canceled. The surface of the lake where the races occurred was covered with two inches of water, making the track dangerous and unsuitable for the event.
This year there will be three ice races at Rainbow Falls. The first is set for January 6, the second event is scheduled for January 20 and the final race will be held on February 10.
Days before the event, the track is plowed to remove the insulating layer of snow in order to allow the ice to harden as much as possible.
Winners of the youth and amateur classes take home a trophy. The pro class winners get a cash prize.
Prize money is determined by the number of riders who pay their registration fee. Pro riders pay a $40
dollar registration fee, and amateurs pay $30 to register. Minibike riders, which are the young boys and girls, pay $15 to register. The cash prize is generally in the neighborhood of $100-$150.
The gates open at 6 a.m. on Sunday and sign up begins at 6:15 a.m. The practice session begins at 7:15 a.m. and the races start at 9 a.m.
There is a $10 fee for riders and for spectators who wish to come out to see the races. Children under 12 are admitted free and must be accompanied by an adult.
No alcohol or drugs are allowed on the Rainbow Falls property.