Get out there and race! |

Get out there and race!

This likely should have been written yesterday, in time to encourage folks to attend last night’s sign-up party for the Town Race Series.

However, last night was only the beginning of the sign-up period for the oldest racing event of its kind in the country, so timing is not necessarily a factor.

We must admit, the Town Race Series holds a special place in our hearts because The Aspen Times has sponsored it for the past three years. But there’s a reason we sponsor it, and a reason for encouraging everyone to participate in this special event in some form.

The Aspen Skiing Co. has planned numerous events throughout the winter designed to bring people from all over the world to our ski hills for some enjoyment. That’s not to say that valley residents don’t also benefit from the Skico’s labor, but there are few among us who can participate in the X Games or the Big Air contests at Snowmass.

The Town Race Series, on the other hand, is open to everyone, and anyone who can point the sticks or a board downhill is invited to participate. And they do ” old and young, good and bad.

It’s the only event that is completely local oriented, though visitors can sign up for one or two races while they are in town. That local connection is what makes it special. Racers earn points every time they participate, and the ones who earn the most points are crowned champions at the end of the series.

As director Scott Nichols once said, “The only thing that’s required is a good attitude. We have former Olympians … to lawyers and doctors, to the last of the ski bum. Every kind of skier can participate.”

The series, which is in its 24th year, kicks off the first weekend in January. We would like to encourage everyone who enjoys having fun with their friends and neighbors to sign up and make this year one to remember. And another good thing about the series is that it’s fairly cheap.

If you just can’t find the moxie to risk crashing through the gates at Highlands, then we encourage people to get out and cheer on the racers whenever they can. Historically, the races don’t draw a large fan base. But we guarantee they are as much fun to watch as to participate in.

Anyone wanting to test their World Cup-like skills should call Aspen Highlands at 544-3005 or the Skico at 925-1220, and ask for the race department. Let the games begin.

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