The Freesports Park at Bestival

The Freesports Park at Bestival

The freesports park is one of the most exciting things to hit festivals in recent years. The displays see some of the worlds best *deep breath now* mountainboarders, mountain bikers, skateboarders, inliners, climbers, trials bikers and free runners performing in front of thousands of people. Check out the video by Theo Acworth and come see us at Camp Bestival this summer!

Skateboarding at the Olympics?!

Skateboarding at the Olympics?!

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) have announced that they are working on the possibility of including skateboarding in the Olympics.

In an article released by Reuters News Agency, Pat McQuaid, president of the International Cycling Union has announced that they are working on incorporating skateboarding into future Olympic events.

“There are discussions going on about the probability, or possibility, of maybe getting BMX freestyle and skateboarding into the Olympic Games programme” said Mr McQuaid at the Sportaccord convention.

“Discussions aren’t very far advanced yet, it’s just an idea that has come up in discussions with the IOC because of the success of BMX when we brought that into the Beijing Olympic Games,” he added.

McQuaid, a member of the International Olympic Committee, said the IOC had asked his federation whether they could accommodate skateboarding were it to become a serious consideration.

“We said we could,” said the Dubliner, adding that the UCI was willing to take the whole of skateboarding under their umbrella.

Here is where, sees the problem. Perhaps Skateboarding would be awesome to see at the Olympics, but surely if it happens it should be ran by skateboarders not cyclists. Afterall, it’s not like skiiers run the snowboarding events at the Winter Olympics.

Oh wait. They do. It seems that board sports are destined to be ran by people who don’t actually ride boards, crazy huh?!

Skateboarding won’t be coming to the Olympics before 2020 and Mr McQuaid noted that “It could be a long term project”.

Despite skateboarding, with its urban counter-culture image, appearing to be a very different sport to cycling, McQuaid said there were strong elements in common. He commented, “they are both… (similar) lifestyle events that attract very much the youth culture of today and it’s important for sport to attract youth.”

Although we share this sentiment it doesnt seem to make sense to let a bunch of lycra clad velodrome racers run a skateboard event does it now?! Let us know your thoughts in the comment section.

Words by Rhys Crilley

Based on the full article by Reuters

Cheers to Matt Barr for the heads up on twitter

Skateboarding at Glastonbury Festival

Skateboarding at Glastonbury Festival

Glastonbury festival is renowned as being the best festival on the planet. If you’re lucky enough to have a ticket to the festival at Worthy farm then you expect to see the worlds best musical acts performing live. But did you know that you can also expect to see some of the world’s best skateboarders riding one of the world’s best skateparks?

The skatepark is built over a two week period leading up to the festival by the So Soild Crew in the Greenpeace field. All of the wood used is FSC certified, meaning that it all comes from renewable sources, and is good for the environment. The park always consists of a 20ft mini ramp but the rest of the set up is customised every year.

Last year’s set up had a bowled corner at one end of the mini ramp, with a jumpbox at the other end which led into a big quarterpipe. Hitting this, skaters could hit a driveway with a handrail and Wembley gap and get back into the mini ramp. This led to a perfect set up for laps around the park where skaters could go for smooth, technical runs rather than short hits on single features.

Handcrafted by a team of ramp experts and carpenters every transition is flawlessly built and is awesome fun to skate! The ramp is also sprayed up by top graffiti artists Chu and Mau Mau and the whole thing is more like a giant, environmentally friendly skateable piece of wooden artwork than a traditional skatepark.

At the ramp in the Greenpeace field there are several pro demos a day where some of the top skaters in the world such as Ross Mcgouran and Kris Vile can be seen tearing the park up in front of the crowds. Not only can you check out the pros on the ramp but you can also have a go yourself. UK skate company A Third Foot provide FSC hand built skateboards for anyone to use, and there are several classes run daily for beginners who want to have a go.

This year the So Soild Crew have got some pretty big plans and it’s going to be bigger and better than ever. So if you’re lucky enough to have a ticket then make sure you head up to the Greenpeace field and have a skate on one of the best skateparks in the world. It’s only skateable for one weekend a year and then the field is given back to the cows who live on the farm all year long!

Words and Photos by Rhys Crilley
Video by ATC Productions

The Ultimate Summer Alternative to Snowboarding

The Ultimate Summer Alternative to Snowboarding

As the winter season draws to a close many snowboarders are wondering what they can do to keep the stoke alive. Nowadays you can really keep snowboarding year round – though it will take some financing. The glacier resorts are open for a summer season which can be odd as it is normally very sunny and warm, yet still cold enough for the snow base to remain. Unless your into park riding however – this is limited. There are minimal amounts of piste open and powder just isnt going to happen. The best option would obviously be a southern hemisphere season but again – most of us have jobs which do not allow for this.

Closer to home we have the indoor fridges and dare I say it – dry slopes. Personally I am not into the dry slopes at all. The fridges are good in small doses, and for rail monkeys. The freeriders and cruisers will not get much out of the experience. Rail monkeys will have a wild time – the UK has a vibrant park scene lead by the domes and guys like Mikee from For Boarders by Boarders ( Unfortunately due to some level of incompetence at some point in the design process, only the Hemel Snow Centre is allowed to have kickers.

Due to the cost and the likely amount of travel involved – it is safe to say you wont be getting too much of a kick out of just snowboarding. It is worth checking out some alternatives.

Surfing is popular, but unless you are near good conditions – it is tough.

Kite surfing is a great sport to get into but there are barriers to entry. Learning takes time and gear is expensive.

For the more adventurous we recommend mountainboarding. There are centres all over the UK which have beginner slopes, boardercross tracks and freestyle set ups including kickers, rails and even big table tops. There is a popular misconception that it hurts when you fall off however that is not true as you tend to wear pads.

Mountainboarding - a great alternative to snowboarding

Skating is a great option. Trick skateboarding is very hard and takes a lot of energy and enthusiasm – it is not for everyone. Longboarding is something everyone should do. You are never too old to cruise around on a longboard. I cant understand why any board sport enthusiast would not have a longboard in the car at all times. It is fun even on flat land. A mellow slope makes for an amazing time. Within a few sessions you will pick up huge amounts of confidence and begin to enjoy it more and more. There is pretty much no other board sport that is so accessible and that you can practice every single day.

On that note – I suggest you dig out your old longboard from the garage, or start looking online for one because it is a must have!