Dangle el gringo campeón

The Day of the race in Colombia is a holiday celebrating diversity of a mixed race. That holiday was celebrated on Monday and also the day of the IDF  World Qualifying race in Colombia.

The Chiva (rider shuttle in Colombia) was ready for race day rider up lift.

Race action:

Monday race day jams

 

The earlier rounds had no upsets and it was almost a straight shot into the semi finals for the top 8. Mariano Gentili (ARG) was the only one to disrupt the top 8.

Daniel "Dangle" Engel and Felipe "El elfo" Marin (COL) going into the tight bridge right. El elfo was set to advance but went in too hot and got ejected out of the Quarter finals.

 

Semi Final A - The battle with the 2 gringos
(Clarke, Sastre, Engel, Gentili)

The 2 Gringos (Clarke and Engel) started pushing up front and raced all the way dowm until the last right where they both crashed. Gentili (who was 3rd at that moment) also hit the bails. This gave Sastre an open path to advancing to the finals.

Result: 1. Sastre, 2 Engel, 3 Clarke, 4 Gentili

 

Semi Final B - The battle of South America
(Espeche, Bertinati, Osorno, Zaluaga)

They bunched up immediately at the first right but somehow Espeche led up front and never looked back. The battle for the last spot in the finals kept changing all the way down with 2 Medellin skaters: Osorno and Zaluaga against number 3 qualifier Bertinati. Zaluaga advanced with Espeche to the finals.

Result: 1: Espeche, 2 Zaluaga, 3 Osorno, 4 Bertinati

Santiago Espeche leading the battle of South America (Semi finals)

 

The last IDF race gave us a suprise package and at this race it came from none other than host nation: Colombia. Felpe Marin was top Colombian qualifier but further strengthening the fast skating of his hometown were 2 more skaters from Medellin: Juan Santiago "Panelo" Zuluaga and Esneider "December" Osorno. They also have made the podiums of the local edition of 2 of the next few races El Mamrbijal (Ecuador) and Yaku Raymi (Peru).

 

Finals: (Espeche, Engel, Zuluaga and Sastre)

A change in strategy by Sastre saw him leading the finals but him and Espeche crashed at one of the early left turns. The lead switched and Zuluaga was leading all the way down up until before the last right Engel comes out and takes La Leonera DH 2018

Front Page of a Colombian newspaper. Photo caption "An emotional parade at full speed'

 

 

 

Resullts:

Open Category

Champion: Daniel "Dangle" Engel (USA)

2nd place: Juan Sebastian "Panelo" Zuluaga (COL)

3rd place: Santiago Espeche (ARG)

4th place: Leon Sastre (BRA)

 

Women's Category

Champion: Jenny Schaurte (GER)

2nd place: Sirley Tabares Builes (COL)

3rd place Viviana Andrea Lopez Herran (COL)

4th place: Laura Vargas Echeverry (COL)

Juniors Category

Champion: Anderson Maldonado (COL)

2nd place: Gabriel Huerfano (COL

3rd place: Maicol Campos (COL

4th place: Bryan Suares (EC)

Masters Category

Champion: Camilo Mendes (COL)

2nd place: Juan Montoya (COL)

3rd place: Carlo Eduardo Arias Moreno (COL)

4th place: Mauricio Rodriguez (COL)

Luge Category

Champion: Roberto Elias Leiva Rengifo (PER)

2nd place: Juan Gonzalez

Also:
It was a first time for a non South American to win in La Leonera
It was a first time someone from Argentina and Colombia to get on the podium of an IDF race
A 50 year old raced in the Open and Women’s bracket