Have what it takes to be a shovel racing world champion? The Angel Fire Resort Shovel Races turns 40 this year and now, anyone can compete.
Competitors of all ages are invited to compete in the event that will run from February 8 through the 9, 2019 event. Shovel racing began as a simple contest in the 1970s when lift operators would ride their shovels down the mountain at the end of their shifts.
The organized media competition of Shovel Racing has been held for 39 years at Angel Fire Resort. National news outlets including ESPN, ABC Sports, MTV, and The Travel Channel have even featured the event. Shovel Racing was also once a featured sport during the early years of the Winter X Games. The racers are competing for cash and prizes.
Racers from all over the country compete by sitting on the scoop of a standard aluminum grain shovel, handle pointed downhill, and then lift their hands and feet to allow gravity to take them for a ride. Each rider gets two shots to clock the fastest time down the front of the Angel Fire ski mountain, and top speeds regularly exceed 70 miles per hour. The practice session will be held February 8, with the competition occurring February 9.
“Where else can you show up and become a World Champion in one race? We are one of only a handful of resorts worldwide where they offer Shovel Racing as a competitive sport,” explains Ruth Worden, marketing manager, Angel Fire Resort. “We’d love to encourage anyone who has heard about Shovel Racing or who would like to try to come give it shot to register now. Everyone has to try it once. It’s a great event to participate in or come out and cheer them on as a spectator.”
Racing categories include:
- Little Scoops (ages 6-9)
- Youth (ages 10-13)
- Junior (ages 14-17)
- Media (open to men or women currently working in TV, print or radio)
- Adult Women (ages 18+)
- Adult Men (ages 18-44)
- Master Men (ages 45+)
- Pro Men
- Pro Women
- NEW Team (4-person team – best of top 3 times)
Those who feel they are expert Shovel Racers are encouraged to enter the Pro-categories. Cash or prizes will be awarded to the fastest competitors in all age-specific categories.
New this year is the “Team” category. In this category, four people will team up to collectively share their times. Each person will race just one time and the top 3 best times will be recorded.
The event will also include the Seventh Annual Media Category Shovel Race Competition – where women and some men, in New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas television and print media will compete for bragging rights and the fastest time down the hill on a shovel.
“Shovel Races is that rare sport where if you don’t let your fear get the best of you, you can win in your category the very first time you try it,” states Jessica Garate, KRQE-TV anchor. “Women have been laying it on the line for years at Angel Fire Resort. Now we’re seeing more men from the media want in. We welcome them knowing they will get smoked by the ladies.”
KRQE main anchors, Dean Staley, and Jessica Garate, along with KRQE chief meteorologist, Mark Ronchetti will emcee the media racing categories at the event and always have their take on the races.
“These women and men from TV dress up in crazy costumes and allow us to make fun of them as they zip down the mountain. Let’s be honest, they’re braver than any of the rest of us at the stations,” states, Mark Ronchetti, Chief Meteorologist, KRQE-TV.
“Our Media category continues to grow in popularity each year. We’re thrilled to have some of the most recognized media members across three states competing. We hope fans of these women and men will travel to the resort to cheer them on,” states Krysty Ronchetti, public relations director for Angel Fire Resort/SJ Communications.
In honor of the 40th Anniversary, Angel Fire Resort is offering a 40 percent lodging discount for Shovel Racing weekend. The discount is good for any 2-night stay, February 7-11, 2019 made at least 48-hours in advance.
For additional information, click here.