May 4, 2005 (Vail, Colo.) – The Jeep(r) King of the Mountain Series today announced the three national host sites for the 2005 Mountain Biking World Championships, as well as a stellar line-up stocked with national and international champions competing for the richest cash purse in the industry and a pair of 2006 Jeep Commanders.
Running from June through August, the Jeep King of the Mountain will schedule stops at some of the most spectacular, scenic outdoor havens in the U.S., each providing for a unique backdrop and world-class recreational facilities. This year’s race sites include:
_ Sunday, June 19 – The Madonna Inn, San Luis Obispo, Calif.
_ Saturday, July 23 – Pando Ski Area, Grand Rapids, Mich.
_ Sunday, August 14 – Jack Frost Mountain, Pocono Mountains, Pa.
Each of the Jeep King of the Mountain Series events will be broadcast to a national television audience. Two one-hour specials will be nationally syndicated during the June, July and August time period. The finals will air on CBS Sports on October 9, 2005.
This year’s event will continue the proud tradition of attracting the world’s top professional racers, including defending Jeep King of the Mountain World Professional Champions Wade Bootes and Katrina Miller, both of Australia. The complete rosters include:
_ Bas de Bever (NED) – 2003 World Cup Champion
_ Wade Bootes (AUS) – Defending JKOM Champion and 2004 World Cup Champion
_ Eric Carter (USA) – Winner of 8 NORBA titles and #1 overall at 2004 World Championships
_ Michel Prokop (CZE) – #1 overall at 2004 World Cup Series
_ Mike King (USA) – Former overall World Champion, 2004 JKOM runner-up
_ Anneke Beerten (NED) – #1 overall at 2004 World Cup Series
_ Fionn Griffiths (GBR) – 2-time World Cup silver medalist and 2003 NORBA Champion
_ Jill Kintner (USA) – 70 career BMX titles, 2004 NORBA Champion, 2005 Sea Otter Champion, 7 in past 3 years since taking up the sport of mountain bike racing
_ Tara Llanes (USA) – 4-time Winter X medalist, 2004 Sea Otter Champion, 2004 World Cup silver medalist
_ Katrina Miller (AUS) – Defending JKOM Champion, 2-time World Champion, 4-time NORBA Champion
_ Vanessa Quin (NZE) – 2004 International Cycling Union World Champion
While this elite field of international professional racers – six women and six men – have already been pre-qualified to participate in the Jeep King of the Mountain Series, the balance of the 16-athlete field – two men and two women – will qualify for each event in the Series based on points earned in National Off-Road Bicycling Association (NORBA) events. This format will allow the wildcard entrants a chance to compete against the best of the best for a shot at the coveted title.
The Jeep King of the Mountain Series utilizes the exclusive “Y” course that combines the two most dramatic and popular forms of mountain bike racing into one unique discipline. Competitors begin the race on separate slalom courses (the prongs of the Y) before converging midway to a single course (the bottom of the Y). In the bottom section, racers must navigate a series of banked turns, tabletops, step-down jumps and rollers before the track climaxes with an all-out sprint to the finish. The “Y” has been described as the ultimate format for mountain bike racing as the overall winners must have a diverse set of skills to win the coveted Jeep King of the Mountain title, symbolic of the World Professional Champion.
World Professional Champions are crowned based on a system of cumulative points earned throughout the Jeep King of the Mountain Series, In addition to competing for Jeep King of the Mountain honors, the racers will be battling for a share of the record prize purse, which tops $100,000, and the keys to a new 2006 Jeep Commander.
The Jeep(r) King of the Mountain was established in 1993. Jeep(r) is the title sponsor for the Jeep King of the Mountain Series. The Mountain Biking World Championships (www.jeepsports.com) is the sister competition to wintertime’s prestigious Jeep King of the Mountain Skiing & Snowboarding World Championships, now in its 12th season as the most prestigious event in professional snow sports. Other marketing partners include Columbia Sportswear, John Paul Mitchell Systems, Mopar and Sirius Satellite Radio.