Hey there boys and girls – Justin here, giving you the low-down on IDGR #4 – Curvy Canyon, the fourth event in the Irvine Downhill and Garage Riders Downhill Race Series. We had a little difficulty with my permissions on the site, so this is a bit late, but we got it figured out!
Yours truly actually hosted this race, and we had a location set in the North Fullerton/Rowland Heights area for last Sunday the 24th. Everyone showed up bright and early, ready to race, but not 2 practice runs in and the Sheriff rolled up! Some type of wedding event was taking place up the road, so lots of people were parked along the sides, and I assume someone walking to or from their car give Johnny Law a ring for us. Luckily, the Sheriff was super cool, and was telling us that apparently he used to luge up at GMR back in the day! Legit! Unfortunately, since people had complained, he said we had to go. He even suggested other roads to go ride, and that in the future, we start earlier in the morning to avoid him having to come out. If you’re gonna get rolled, at least that was the way to do it. I’m definitely still looking forward to holding another race on that hill, and those lucky enough to get some runs in seemed to really enjoy it – luck just wasn’t with us that day.
We kicked around the idea of skating anyways for a while, but decided it was best to just be respectful and ride the backup hill. I actually had two in mind – one that was a lot closer, but just a mellow bomb, and one a little further north that had more turns and more speed. A vote was taken, and the gnarlier hill was chosen! A 40mph-ish bomb through 4-5 sweepers in a scenic little canyon kept everyone on their toes, but was safe for all skill levels. Everyone who came out drove the extra 15 or so minutes out to a secret spot in West Covina (except a van full of 5-year-olds from Laguna whose dad didn’t want to drive anymore – we didn’t miss em!), where the race went off without a hitch! Neighbors there were stoked to see us and the hill was prime.
Heats were assigned at random, and a four-man, top-two-advance format was used, including a consolation bracket that let everyone race at least twice and gave people a shot to get back in to the semi-finals. About 13 people raced, and the final heat came down to Drew Edwards, Phillip “Swagmaster” Crow, Nathan Marton, and Markise Gladney. Markise showed up in his bright green super-suit and half-shell, but still managed to put at least two solid body-lengths on the other riders, and took an easy first. The rest of the podium was hard-fought, with Nathan pulling off second, Drew snagging third, and Swagmaster rounding out fourth place.
Some epic, custom California-themed trophies were provided by Brian “Hernan” Vigil of Unmodern Industries/Black Velvet Slide Pucks/Never Grow, and 1st through 4th took one home. We managed to give out over $120 in cash money to the winners from the entry fees plus some extra dough provided by sponsors Icaro Aero Helmets and Unmodern Industries. Black Velvet/Unmodern also sent out a bag of their famous collaboration Cali toe-stops that a couple people were able to snag, and Rayne Longboards sent a package out that didn’t make it in time but will be included in one of the next events! Also, big ups to Axl Dyer and Katie Fredericks for helping me run the event, to our guest photographer Caylin Schutz for the great pics, and to everyone who helped shuttle. Word on the street is that IDGR #5 is going to be a slide competition, so be on the lookout for that and lots more from the IDGR and Adrenaline-Fueled!
You stay classy So Cal!
The only casualty of the day – our bro ate it while attempting to dirt-ride into a drainage ditch
The freebord pro team talks to this police officer who explains the laws of the city for skateboarding and tells about his fame from other skate videos. Photo by: Leecifer
You’re skating your favorite hill when “Johnny Law” rolls up on you. It turns out someone called reporting skateboarders on “their” hill. After a lecture explaining the laws (which vary from city to city) you are issued a ticket for being a pedestrian in the roadway.
“Here’s your lift ticket,” says the police officer. Your day which was going good so far just got expensive. All the fun you were having is drowned and a damper is thrown on your day.
This ticket was issued on a road with no sidewalks, no bike lane and cyclists riding up and down the road. No one is worried about the cyclists. They are free to roam and do their thing while you are treated like a criminal. Skateboarders are unfairly singled out although a skateboard can be used for transportation as well as recreation while bicycles are used for mostly recreation.
Skateboarding has been around since the 1950′s. As the sport began to increase in popularity, its sub culture grew and law enforcement looked at these kids as punks and criminals.
Police officers, security guards and concerned citizens are constantly harassing skaters. A fun run down a hill shouldn’t turn into a lecture about the danger of the sport and how many people are killed participating in it nor should it become an issue about who owns the street. The amount of cyclists killed every year is far greater than the number of skateboarders.
A stereotype about skaters is that they run around spray-painting everything and destroying stuff, breaking into places and stealing. Sure there are criminals and punks who skateboard, but this doesn’t mean that all skateboarders fall under this category.
“Stop skating immediately” bellowed the police helicopter flying above Michael Melone (left) and Jordan Hessler (right). Photo By: Leecifer
It is a sport that requires a great deal of balance and athleticism. Most people will have a hard time standing on the board let alone riding it down hills and flipping it in controlled spins through the air.
Southern California has a thriving multimillion dollar action sports industry, yet people still want skateboarding banned in their cities. They want the streets to themselves for the few times they drive up and down each day.
We view the world differently than most people. Each city is its own playground.
“Go home” said the cop to a group of skaters ready to bomb the 50 mph rollercoaster ride. Photo by: Leecifer
Every skateboarder shares one thing in common. We have all felt the pure thrill and joy of riding around town with nothing but a piece of wood and wheels between you and the road. It is one of the best feelings in the world. The adrenaline is flowing, you can feel the wind whipping against you as your shirt flaps behind you and at that moment nothing else matters.
Skateboarding in certain areas is like being in a war zone. It is you versus everyone else. No skateboarding signs litter city streets. “You are not allowed to have fun here,” is how I read the signs. You must be ready for any situation, even the occasional pissed off parent.
The sport is rapidly growing and acceptance for it is slowly increasing. Skate parks are being built so people have designated places to go. Skateboarders are still looked at as punk kids, when in reality it is just your normal everyday person trying to enjoy their lives and the sport they choose to participate in.
What is better than a sport with no rules, where you are free to do what you want all while having fun doing it? – Leecifer
Photos by: Leecifer
“Stop skating immediately” bellowed the police helicopter flying above Michael Melone (left) and Jordan Hessler (right). Photo By: Leecifer
So a small crew of us hardcore IDGR (Irvine downhill and garage riders) group met up as Spencer “Spez” Adams hill. After 3 practice runs we were ready to start running heats. Thats when things started going down. Everyone was going full blast into the righty and bailing hard into the curb. We actually only got one run in before the Irvine PD came to tell us to stop and to tell me that she didn’t think my helmet was safe? Anyways NO ONE DIED!!! The race got stopped and everyone was bored waiting for pizza and watching the footage. It’s a cruel joke to play that people died. People were calling to make sure everyone was alright…don’t worry everyone was amped about it. “How’s my back look”, “did you see me jump the curb? I jumped over the curb.” “I think I flew the farthest” “You hit the curb so hard your wheel broke off the bearings” “You totally took him out” etc etc.
In all seriousness though everyone this situation was very dangerous. These riders could have easily been in the way of a car. In my heat a car pulled out in the middle of me and Swagmasters run. I could have skated the hill all day as a group and not done heats and it would have been safer. Re-think traffic control and know the road your skating on. Expect the unexpected. Shit happens, ride safe and ride forever. – Leecifer over and out
P.S. I think you did take him out Gregg. Your line was sketchy.
The San Diego Downhill Racing League (SDDRL) met up August 7, 2011 for another Sunday adventure at a road known as “Church.”
“Church” is a fun road with a straight steep drop accelerating riders to speeds reaching close to 50 m.p.h. The road then shot up a little hill into a right hand turn which then dropped you back down another chute. The road then went up and down a couple more humps where riders would reach the finish line.
All anyone ever got was practice runs. Some racers didn’t even get their leathers on before the cops kicked us out.
“Go home” said the cop kicking us out at the top of “Church”
With an unfortunate turn of events after getting kicked out by the cops we headed around the corner to race a private driveway belonging to friends of the SDDRL crew. The cops followed us but with the owners support, the cops could not kick us off of a private driveway.
The driveway was not the ideal race course, however it did provide a lot of excitement. The driveway took a slight left then became very steep dropping down into a hairpin right turn that challenged every riders abilities to find the best lines into it. The driveway then dropped again coming to the finish line and the end of the driveway.
Sean DeGracia throws a stand up slide into the hairpin right turn on the driveway we raced
Aaron Enns from Bakersfield absolutely killed it taking home the well deserved win after punching through a tough wall of competitors. Judson Jager also went home with a trophy. Two 1st place trophies were awarded to both Aaron Enns and Judson Jager.
Judson Jager (left) and Aaron Enns (right) holding their first place trophies.
Post race activities included a pool party featuring a belly flop contest and best jump contest. Tye Donnelly also brought a large tarp for some tarp surfing fun which eventually turned into a giant slip and slide.
It is safe to say everyone had a good time despite the unfortunate turn of events at “Church.”
Thanks to Tye Donnelly who always puts together these rad SDDRL events and it was great meeting Michael Brook and Notorious Nate. – Leecifer
When you have a growing and innovative sport like freebording, gather up all the best riders in the sport and take them on a trip, epic times are to be had.
Arnaud de Bluze (green shirt) leads with Bently Anderson (blue shirt) Tom Macfarlane (black shirt) Tyler Murgo (grey shirt) Nicolas Gaillard (blue sweatshirt)
Traveling south through L.A and finding a great hill with fresh wet slurry on it was fustrating. It was time for the team to head farther south to Orange County.
Arnaud de Bluze (left) and Arnaud Blin (right) shredding down Summit
After finding some of the best hills in Southern California it was not long before the cops came to tell us to leave. They told us about a ban on hills in the city and gave us a pamphlet showing all the banned hills.
The cops came to try to stop all our fun telling us about the roads being banned
Thinking we had won after finding a hill that wasn’t on the list the Dethbox (Freebord van) crashed into a parked Mustang.
The Dethbox eats up a Mustang
It was time to move on to other hills. Heading down south to a popular road in San Clemente everyone got some shredding in without being hassled.
From right to left. Corey Lucero followed by Bently Anderson and Richie Verost shredding Talega
The trip wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the skate park. The shreddage and elbow/hip/ass carnage was exhilerating to watch.
Nicolas Gaillard does a 360 at San Clemente skatepark
After another day of shredding the team was headed back up north.
Arnaud de Bluze takes the best right hand turn Modjeska Canyon has to offer
Epic hills, cops, car crash, more cops, shredding, getting yelled at by the locals, camping, more shredding, road rash, swell bows, skate parks, and more shredding. Wouldn’t be a Freebord trip without all of this.
Shredders, photographers, videographers and spectators met on Jan 22 & 23 on a service road in San Clemente to witness and participate in two days of Southern California’s finest downhill skateboarding.
This was an outlaw event that brought riders from all over California and other surrounding states together for a couple fun days of skateboarding. This event was held on a service road that cars could not drive up making it an ideal location.
The first day of the event, January 22 was the slide jam portion of the event. The second day January 23 was the race portion of the event.
The “Rad Zone” is in between the red lines
The slide jam featured two different sized kicker ramps and a rad zone. The rad zone was marked by a chalk line and it started just past the second kicker ramp and went into the turn. “If you usually grab rail then get rad and don’t grab it, throw a switch stand up slide, just get rad” said Danny Connor, Event Judge. Anything done in the rad zone was worth more points.
Before the contest began, a police officer came up to talk to us. “You all look like a good group. Everyone’s got their helmets and I saw mom’s bringing coolers up the hill. I wanted to give them a ride up” said the police officer. “Please yield to bikers and pedestrians coming up the hill and there shouldn’t be any problems.”
Police officer talks to skateboarders
Skateboarding greats Danny Connor, Marcus Bandy and Max Capps judged the contest. A 20 minute jam session was held. After eliminating part of the field another 20 minute jam session was held. This happened once more with all the finalists and then the winners were decided.
Hunter Schwirtz, Laguna Beach took 1st place, Kody Knoble, Los Angeles took 2nd and Trevor Watkins, San Diego took 3rd.
Following the slide jam after the winners were announced, it was time to stoke everyone out with gear from all the sponsors. Everyone was gathered around and stickers were thrown. Wheels were tossed down the hill and everyone started racing to get it. The first person to bring it back would get the set. Trucks were thrown out, dvds, more stickers, bushings, and so much more. It was raining product and stickers and shirts for almost 5 minutes, maybe even more.
Hunter Schwirtz the winner doing a slide
The race on the 23rd was held on the same road. This road is steep and technical. Riders must be able to slide in both directions. The road features 2 lefts and 2 rights and no cars. The whole outside of the track is dirt so riders can really push their speeds not having to worry too much about crashing.
Racers try to find the fastest lines throught the corners
Not as many people showed up for the race but there was still a good turnout. The race was very exciting with many crashes and close competition. At times both racers crashed off the course taking the turn too fast. The races then became a battle to see who could get their board and back on the track the quickest. Everyone seemed to find this very exciting.
Max Capps got some road rash
Jimmy Riha, San Diego took 1st place. AJ Haiby, San Diego took 2nd place. Chance Gaul, Laguna Beach took 3rd.
There were a few bad crashes and some riders left with road rash, ripped shirts, torn shorts, but one thing’s for sure, everyone had a good time. –Lee
With an eclectic mix of big name riders and free agents – some hailing from as far as the Philippines – present, the Talega Halloween Slide Jam once again proved that SoCal can provide a world-class course.
It was fun seeing people dressed up and pushing the limit doing absolutely gnarly maneuvers on their skateboards. With the two kicker ramps set up riders had plenty of launch to help them go big. Both kicker ramps were big, however the large kicker ramp was just massive. This ramp made for both big tricks and big falls.
Everyone got plenty of runs in and before we knew it, it was time for the contest to begin. Hot dogs were consumed and the plenty of grilling was getting done while lights and generators were set up. Darkness was falling and as the road became less and less visible a police chopper flew in and provided light for some riders. After about 20 minutes of the spotlight as the only light, the generators were fired up and the course was back to daylight.
With a police chopper still circling over head with their spotlight the event began. Run after run, trick after trick, a spotlight from above and tons of riders ripping created a really cool atmosphere. Forty minutes to an hour went by when three police officers came walking up the hill with their flashlights. “Do you know how much money it costs to put a chopper in the air?” one officer said. “We honestly thought you were just helping us out with light,” a skater replied.
Due to a stupid law in San Clemente the event was shut down by the 5-0. Apparently due to the powers of darkness you are not allowed to skateboard at night in the city of San Clemente. The cops were nice about it and let us pack up and leave, with no citations..
We all met at a park right down the street from where the slide jam was. Awards and swag were handed out to anxious skaters. Everyone got a hat, dvd and plenty of stickers. Many riders got trucks, wheels, gloves and several other prizes were handed out to the winners. Three lucky winners left with brand new Sector 9 decks.
1st Place- Duke Degan
Check back for other winners. I have forgotten in all the mayhem.