A quick search didn’t turn up this question, so please steer me to another thread if it’s been covered. I’m considering going to the World Championships at Vail (assuming I can get lodging within a couple hours of Vail/Avon). Is there worthwhile on-mountain spectator access for downhill and super G viewing? Never having watched a live DH or SG, I would imagine getting up close to the best in the world hitting jumps or turns at 80 mph is pretty impressive. But If all you can do is watch giant screen TV at the bottom, forget it – I can stay home and do that. If there is worthwhile viewing, what’s the traffic forecast for I-70? Gridlock? Is it hopeless to stay anywhere but in Vail/Avon? Thanks for any insight you can offer.
Vail World Championships - spectator viewing
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I would probably stay west of Vail. Eagle or Glenwood should give you fairly traffic free access and I would park at the Arrowhead base.
I've never been to the DH at BC. I have been a lot in Aspen and used to attend the X Games every year. You used to be able to get really close to the action. But in recent years, as events get bigger, security has become much more prevalent and now you can't get nearly as close as you used too.
The World Championships will be a big deal and I'm betting security will be tight.
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I am going to this and I've been to speed races at BC as well as other World Cup races and the Olympics.
First, the races are at Beaver Creek. Vail will have the medal ceremonies and a few other things, but not the real races. You want to be in Beaver Creek or Avon.
Second, seeing races in person is hugely exciting and not like watching it on tv. Yes, for speed races you are mostly watching the giant screen and the time clock. But the atmosphere is just fantastic and when the racer comes in to view people go nuts. If you really think that doesn't sound appealing, there's always the tech races, though even those generally start out of sight. But I would give it a chance--it's a ton more exciting than it sounds. I would not suggest setting up at one of the viewpionts along the course. They go by so fast you can't even tell who is who.
The Beaver Creek races have always been very well run and these championships are free. If you're interested and can go, I would HIGHLY recommend it.
We got a condo in Avon for a pretty reasonable sum, but we booked a while ago. The hotels are generally full of media/people associated with the teams.
But in recent years, as events get bigger, security has become much more prevalent and now you can't get nearly as close as you used too.
I've always been impressed by how close you can get at Beaver Creek and by how close we could get at the Olympics. Bode skied through the spectators last time I was there; at the Olympics they went by right on the other side of the fence from you when skiing away. And the stands aren't very far back from the finish area.
Because we don't have unlimited PTO and the races are so spread out we had to choose speed or tech, and we chose tech this time around, mostly due to Mikaela and Ted. I'm disappointed not to see the speed races but want to get my other ski trips in this year too.