One not to miss in 2017!
We arrived late into Cluj-Napoca Airport and met our hire-car company, we took out the extra insurance for peace of mind and thank f*** we did. The roads are narrow, winding and full of mental Romanian doing 8 car overtakes into blind corners.
We drove to Turda and slept the night in the car so we could explore the famous salt mines. The highlight being the Rudolf Mine at 42 meters deep, 50 meters wide and 80 meters long. With boating, mini golf, bowling, table tennis, stunning stalactites and wall patterns, it is by far the most incredible man-made anything I have been inside.
Next we stopped in Hunedoara to see Corvin's Castle (or Hunyadi Castle) originally a defensive structure that took on many alterations throughout the 14th to 17th century with a river winding around it’s stone walls. We learned about some of the brutal torture techniques, such as impaling which took a gruesome 2 days to actually kill the victim. If you haven’t read up anything about Vlad the Impaler (who the stories of Dracula have stemmed from) I recommend you do.
Finally we arrived at Straja the event location, we booked into our comfy room, enjoyed the sun-setting over the distant mountains and ate some traditional Romanian food.
The hotels are right on the hill, along with a mini market and the gondola. Breakfast and dinner were served at our hotel and there was an hour break each day. Straja also has it’s own rescue brown Bear.
8 runs in 3 hours is an unprecedented number of runs especially for a first time event on a hill that takes roughly 4 and a half to 5 minutes to get down and then an exciting scramble to the gondola through the forest. Even when the hill was closed the skating carried on into dusk with rampant skaters cheering and applauding from their balconies.
The racing is a leg endurance, technical and diverse corners litter the entire track with fast straights and kinks too, this hill delivers everything.
In the evenings you can with chill on the slopes or head down to the party area ,or ‘heart of the event’ christened by Andreas, which had Mortal Combat, cheap beer and snacks on the first night and event footage and a music system ,that was genuinely awesome, on the Saturday night all framed by the starry sky.
Joe Baldwin and Will Edgecombe hammax-relaxin' at sunset.
A wet and soon to be patchy practice run on race-day.
Thaney-wheels = no wheels.
Jorge Higgins Breaking his Euro-event virginity in style he also enjoyed lots of ice-cream.
Event winner Sebastion Hertler's cheeky-happy-face in the last corner of the finals.
Before flying home we had some time to explore the lively city of Cluj-Napoca which is a seriously cool city hosting all sorts of alternative festivals, lots of gothic architecture and an elaborate botanical garden.
Really big amazonian water-lily
I say with confidence Translyvania Downhill will be one of the best events in the world.
Thank to the Devastation Longboard Crew and all their friends and family to helped make their event possible, also the hotels and local police force who made sure the road was closed. And finally all the great skaters who plunged into a first-time event and made it friendly and fun.
Keep an our on our facebook for the full photo album.