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Port Angeles Downhill Action, Steve Smith Qualifies Fastest

<b>Compare the weather for qualifying with yesterday's DH practice in Port Angeles. This looks more like it! The rain fell lightly causing some greasy spots that made riders more cautious than stoked today.</b>

<b>Evil Vengeance Tour rider, Kevin Littlefield. On race day this shoot willl be packed with even more hecklers!</b>

<b>In Port Angeles, anything goes. - Video by Five Seven Film</b>

<b>Steve Smith proves his 2012 victory at Dry Hill was no fluke and qualifies 1st in greasy conditions.</b>

<b>Josh Bryceland feeling right at home in the wet and the roots. He qualified 2nd, just ahead of Brook MacDonald.</b>

<b>Brook MacDonald is getting along well with the new team, bikes and the PNW conditions. 3rd place qualifier.</b>

<b>Australian, Connor Fearon is a crowd favorite. He's stoked on the course and letting it all hang out.</b>

<b>Evan Warner must have seen yesterday's photo of Neethling because he showed up today to keep his bike fresh.</b>

<b>Neethling through steep chute above the finish where favorites are cheered for and others are heckled to the fullest extent of shame.</b>

<b>Local favorite and owner of Big Tree Bikes, Jerry Knight, ducks the patriotism of Diamondback's Kyle Thomas. The crowd means business in Port Angeles</b>

<b>Gwin didn't have the best qualifying result (he placed 12th), but he's stoked to be back on the downhill bike.</b>

<b>PNW loam!</b>

<b>Strobel always gets the loudest cheers.</b>

<b>Casey Brown blasting through the thicket.</b>

<b>Mikey Sylvestri, now with DVO, shows how the top of the track was uneffected by the intermittent today...still blazing fast.</b>

<b>Troy Brosnan back in 14th for qualifiers, but stoked to be riding a real DH track as they test their 2013 equipment.</b>

<b>Ropelato does things most humans (even Gwin) think is not possible.</b>

<b>Jill Kintner, never one to hold back, took the top spot in the Women's Qualifier.</b>

<b>The ground is softening in the woods and the ruts are starting to form. Get off line and things get slick in a hurry.</b>

<b>Mitch Delfs fresh off his surfboard for his first full race run since Norway last summer. Don't feel bad if you call him Strobel.</b>

<b>If your qualifiers didn't go as expected today, just wash off those feelings of doubt. Race day will be fresh and new. Stay tuned for the finals action!</b>

Photos by Dave Trumpore - A little light rain turned the dusty Port Angeles downhill course into a challenging, greasy spectacle for qualifying. Steve Smith reigns supreme on the day and even though a beaver chewed through the timing cable, delaying results, everyone is stoked on the first stop of the U.S. Grand Prix of Mountain Biking.

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