Several months passed since the end of the Italian Downhill Skateboard Championship 2016. With the late arrival of cold winter weather, our thoughts of rubbing shoulders with fellow racers on the road and hearing the sound of wheels sliding still warms us. Making this holiday season even better is a Christmas gift that is the CIDHS calendar for 2017!
The Italian Downhill Skateboard Championship (CIDHS) promised an interesting tour for next year with substantial news regarding the race tracks. The championship tour will take part from June to August, taking in account all other IDF competitions across the globe.
The stages for the Italian Downhill Skateboard Championship 2017 will include four events and two new race tracks.
Downhill Falls – 24th and 25th of June, 2017
As the new entry in the CIDHS series, Downhill Falls will take place in the province of Frosinone, in the center of Italy.
Held in a very special city called Isola del Liri, it’s also the only European city with a waterfall flowing right in the heart of town. As something I never thought I would see, it is also the particular characteristic that gave the event its name.
Apart from seeing the beautiful waterfall, you shouldn’t miss the 1.3 km long race track with brand new asphalt. We invite you to take a go at it and try being the first one to win the podium at Downhill Falls.
Official hashtag: #downhillfalls
Ambrose Challenge – 1st and 2nd of July, 2017
Ambrose Challenge was a part of the CIDHS circuit last year and got a very positive feedback from all the racers attending. It is located in the province of Verona, in Valpolicella. For next year’s season, we are expecting another pleasant weekend on this road that will cater to all adrenaline seeking longboarders.
The track is 2.8 km long with an average gradient of 6.5 % and a maximum gradient of 10 %.
Here is the 2016 video from Ambrose Downhill Challenge:
The next new/old entry of the 2017 tour is Verdicchio Race. As the third edition of this race, its coming back better than ever after a years break. Verdicchio will be held on the Poggiocupro race track in a village called Cupramontana, the capital of Verdicchio.
As one of the most technical and fun packed tracks in Italy, riders will descend down the 2.7 km long race track with 6 hairpins and long straights with fast corners.
This event will last for four days and is going to be a part of the IDF Eurotour 2017, as a World Qualifying Series. Two days of the event will be dedicated to the Italian Championship.
The 14th edition of the Euroskate will finish the CIDHS circuit. The Roll Club of Padua, led by Sandro Marandin, is back with the Euganean Hills and an impeccable organisation which includes big shows and the famous torchlight ride along the race route.
The track is famous for its curve called “Schivanoia”, the first one of a series of hairpins following one another and inevitably leading to racers showing off their best skills while pumping and taking advantage of the hairpins apex.
Surely the 2017 Italian Downhill Skateboard Championship FISR will not fail to surprise us. In the mean time, while waiting for the race season to start, go out and skate. Get ready, because the starting line is waiting for you!
Daniel Iseli from Switzerlandstarted building longboards around seven years ago. He officially introduced ROCKET Longboards in December 2013 with a collection of four models, which soon grew into a full blown lineup of nine premium quality decks presented at ISPO 2016.
ROCKET Domination, Dominic Schenk’s pro-model longboard deck was released in late summer 2014. Since then the deck undergone a series of upgrades, until its final and current version.
In-house designed pneumatic presses, CNC-machined moulds, top materials, development and extensive testing with some of the Europe’s best riders… Daniel got it all covered very well and now distributes the boards around the world with confidence.
If you are interested to learn more about ROCKET Longboards see this article published in Concrete Wave Magazine, Fall 2016. For now, let’s check out the board and its features…
ROCKET Domination Dominic Schenk’s pro model longboard deck
The Domination longboard deck was developed together with team rider Dominic Schenk for IDF racing season 2014, which didn’t turn out to be a huge success.
However, Dominic placed second at the Red Bull No Paws Down World Championship in 2015, and took the Domination on the podium. With so many eyeballs looking at his direction, it was hard not to notice “the rocket” Dominic was “flying”.
Six months later and after two years of development and testing, the Domination longboard deck is now one of the best choices when buying a highly functional and quality board for downhill or freeride.
Shape, look and feel
Before I go into more detail, let me say that the photos I made hardly justify the beauty of this deck.
The Domination features a directional shape with a simple outline which narrows towards the center of the deck and kind of reminds us of a rocket. It looks simple and “evergreen”.
The glossy bottom side with the artwork really stands out and it gives the board a special look and feel. It feels as if it would be glass, but of course, it’s not. It’s a thin layer of PBT with the graphic sublimated on it.
The graphic was done by Chris Bögle a.k.a. Killerartworx and it features a pirate lady with a skeleton head and a hat, sitting on a [treasure] chest while playing a guitar.
While the graphic apparently doesn’t have any deeper meaning, it’s nicely done and it’s interesting. As if it would be reminding us that life is not forever and we should skate more.
Composition and materials
The Domination deck features six layers of SFI-certified maple sandwitched between three layers of carbon fiber sheets to provide a solid and stiff platform for high speed skateboarding and slides. It weighs 2,05 kg.
As already mentioned, the bottom side is additionally covered with PBT for extra protection, graphic application and glossy finish. The top side of the board features an extra sleek look as you can see the texture of the black carbon fibres sheet.
Dimensions, wheelbase and truck mount
The ROCKET Domination is a directional top-mount longboard deck. It is 91cm long (35.82 inch) and 25 cm (9.84 inch) wide. Wheelbase options range from 56 cm (22 inches) to 68.5 cm (27 inches), which allows personalisation depending on your stance width preference.
Platform and concave
Too many concave features might be a turn off for riders who are concerned about a platform narrating their stance. The Domination shouldn’t fall into this category. When I stepped on it for the first time, I was surprised to find out how comfortable and well designed the platform is.
A combination of centered W-concave with a 0.39″ micro-drop in the front and flarred wheel wells creates a comfortable pocket which will prevent your front foot from slipping off.
The micro-drop in the front is compensated with a slight rocker in the back which ends where the truck mount starts and it doesn’t affect the angle of a truck hanger. In the front, this is taken care of by a CNC-machined flush mount. The combination of the W-concave and a continuous 0.59″ concave, provides a locked-in feeling of the back foot when in tucking position.
The flarred wheel wells are much bigger in the front, while in the back they are minimal and you can hardly feel them when standing across the platform.
The deck also features a minimal 3D kick tail for added fun and trickery.
RidersFly was a small crew of Spanish riders back in 2006. Since then, they grew and aren’t limited to only a group of adrenaline junkies anymore. Under their name you will find a competitive team, that takes part in national and international events, a school that prioritises safety and teaching newcomers, a junior team, swag longboard gear and of course freerides.
Their 2017 event plan includes 4 freerides, all taking part in small Spanish towns. If you’re in the mood to visit Spain next year, you should definitely stop at one of their events.
Xert Freeride, March 25th – 26th, 2017
First on the RidersFly calendar is Xert Freeride in March. The first edition of this freeride will take place in a small town called Xert in the province of Castellón (Spain). Located a few kilometers away from Salzadella and Sant Mateu, Xert is also conveniently located close to the airport.
The spot is amazing to skate and the town is very welcoming. We also like doing events in tiny villages because we prefer to bring tourism to small towns rather than large cities. Maria Giner
Besides the relaxed and local vibe, attendees will enjoy a 2.5 km long and dynamic road with a bunch of corners and sweapers. With the top speed of 75 km/h, Ridersfly makes sure you’ll get to feel the Spanish breeze.
Furthermore, Xert offers 2 days of freeriding with shuttles, rider insurance and an ambulance crew with a doctor. Moreover, rego also includes water during the event, two meals (lunch) and also a nice camping area in a sport center with showers and toilettes.
The riders limit is set to 100 skaters and the registration fee to 70 euros. If you are interested in Xert freeride, note that the registration starts on February 15th, 2017. All further information will be posted on their event page.
7 Horquillas Freeride, June 3rd – 4th, 2017
Second in line is 7 Horquillas Freeride in the beginning of June. This event will be held in a small village called Condemios de Arriba.
Until now the crew celebrated a birthday of a fellow team rider Tato with a small skate session, but next year they are doing it bigger than ever, as 7 Horquillas Freeride.
Located in the province of Guadalajara, the track is short but sweet. RidersFly said it’s technical, but offers a lot of fun with your friends.
Seven corners packed into 1.4 km of road promise a fun time, while the straights provide an adrenaline rush with a top speed of 80+ km/h.
The riders limit is set to 100, but there is no further information regarding the price at this moment. If you are interested in the 7 Horquillas Freeride, follow their social pages and website for fresh upcoming information.
Salzadella Freeride, July 28th – 30th, 2017
Salzadella is the most known event by RidersFly. Although last year they had decided to cancel their IDF race, because of the low number of riders, they made a decision to keep going with the freeride.
Furthermore, they are also considering doing a race, not and IDF race, but at this moment we can’t promise anything.
This well known track is 2.6 km long with fast corners and smooth pavement. Moreover, longboarders can reach a top speed of 105 km/h and streetlugers up to 115 km/h. In addition to the good protection of the track, marshals will be placed on every corner.
This three day freeride will host 100 riders. The price of the registration in not know yet, but RidersFly promise that everyone will get their moneys worth. As per usual, rego includes shuttles, rider insurance, an ambulance team with a doctor and a protected track. Moreover, everybody will also get lunch, water during the freeride and will enjoy a camping area in a sports center with showers and toilettes.
Sant Mateu Freeride, October 28th – 29th, 2017
Last but definitely not least, October will mark the 6th Sant Mateu Freeride. The crew will stay in the province of Castellón, but this time move to a different village called Sant Mateu.
This event is described to be appropriate for all riding levels with it’s 1.2 km length, a few corners and some fast sections.
Moreover, the riders limit is not know yet, but the registration price is going to be 70 euros.
As on all RidersFly events, participants will be covered by a shuttle, insurance, ambulance team and two day’s lunch. Besides the track, the camping area is also backed with showers and toilettes to keep you clean after a hard day of riding.
In June, the French Longboard Girls Crew found themselves filming a new video called French Girls Going Down. The filming took place on Espigoulier Pass, located near Marseille, France.
Anne Poursin, Marjorie Roméo, Lyde Begue and Laure Descloitres took two days off to skate a giant corkscrew road. Meanwhile, Augustin Joan-Montes from AJ Médias captured their motion and me, Alban Pernet documented their adventure with the lens of my camera.
This trip was an opportunity to appreciate the fast and feminine style of the girls riding, who are always happy and smiling. Even after two day of non-stop runs under the hot sun of Southern France.
The new French Girls episode features the following riders:
To survive the winter, a squirrel needs to stack about ten thousand pieces of nuts, acorns and pine-cones before the first snow hits. Tough life.
In general, as skaters living in a country where the weather is seasonal, sometime around the first autumn signs we need to think about charging our batteries to the maximum, just so we can survive winter.
Last year we came up with an idea to visit Spain and guess what, it was a straight bullseye. Without even the slightest hesitation this year early in April we started planning our next trip.
In 2015, Pablo Quiles, a well-known rider from Spain, showed us the ins and outs of Gnarlicante. So basically thanks to him, we now know the spots, local riders and the Spanish way of living.
Getting ready for the trip
When getting ready we tried to plan everything ahead so that nothing would surprise us and we could stay as low profile on the spots as possible. It’s very important for us to respect the spots and local riders that use them on daily basis.
Fortunately when it comes to the whole planning phase, we have a ruthless engineers Bartosz who doesn’t leave anything undone. So by the time we were leaving Poland, our map of roads we wanted to hit looked like a globe used as a shooting target for close range shotgun practice.
We had that covered. To get other things done we got in touch with David Butti from Salsito House. He offered us to stay at his home, helped us with the rentals and overall was an awesome host the whole week once we got to Spain.
I can easily skip the whole ‘omg excitement phase’ with the packing, the flight, the whole clapping after landing and the fact that we could easily throw our jackets to trash because of the 29 degrees in Spain, while in Poland people had to scrub windshields of their cars in the morning.
This year we managed to smuggle into Alicante the whole STWS so there were 7 of us. Next year we probably will bring our families and pets and in two years’ time we will most likely come back with all the crap we own and stay for good.
Skate all day, everyday
All jokes aside Spain has so many beautiful spots and such a unique climate to offer that I myself sometimes didn’t know wheatear I should laugh or cry, so I cried with happiness and enjoyed the trip as much as possible.
We had an ambitious plan to “skate all day, everyday”’ and to test the heck out of the new improved core mounted in LOBO wheels. In fact we calculated that in one week we should be able to pull around 12 skate sessions, counting the Gnarlicante King of the Hill Outlaw Race and Castell de Castells freerides.
The plan was simple…
Wake up, hit the market, eat at the spot (which I really like), skate, lunch somewhere at the beach, skate, dinner, relax, sleep, wake up and repeat.
Sounds a lot but to be honest, if the weather wouldn’t prank us for a day or so, we would most likely pull it off. Nevertheless, we still got tons of riding done and left behind loads of burned urethane.
Alicante is a region that offers hundreds of spots you can skate on.
I literally write hundreds because it’s true. Most likely if you’re a local rider 98% of the spots is invincible for you, but as pure “flatland boyz” we were stoked.
Of course in a weeks’ time we weren’t able to hit all of the spots we saw but we did the best we could playing it smart enough not to burn anything for the locals.
In my eyes Alicante region offers everything. From 30% grade slide spots, through awesome roads with small traffic to pure open road freeride experience with all kinds of other attractions.
So the whole week went by excellent.
During the day we were skating, having fun, stacking clips and snapping photos. Evening on the other hand we spent either relaxing in Salsito or just roaming the small town of Calpe, enjoying the late night life of elderly citizens. I’m telling you, it’s the Miami of Europe.
Fortunately the photographic equipment we took this year for the trip also levelled up, so thanks to the gimbal, a sweet GH4 and a handmade car mount, we were able to record many runs.
King of the Hill Outlaw Race
On the 14th, the Gnarlicante crew organised an outlaw race at on of their local favourites, a spot called “Psychospot“. This name actually comes from the one and only Pablo Quiles, who’s nickname is Psycho, so if you know Pablo or at least seen him skate, you get the drill about the spot.
The road itself does not forgive mistakes and brings genuinely tons of fun. Most of the surface is destroyed in one way or another. From huge cracks and random concrete humps to fairly large holes leaving just a small pass to go through. Add over a dozen degrees of grade plus a few corners and you got yourself a pretty interesting mixture.
I asked the locals why they love the spot so much and heard that the pavement is just perfect where it needs to be and the rest is just details. Frankly, that’s true but I myself think that besides that, Psychospot also offers tons of adrenaline and almost no traffic, plus the guys block the road while bombing.
So, we skated a bit over there. Melvin Herrmann helped us with recording a run of Rafał and we moved on to another road to shot some more footage.
Eventually Melvin Herrmann was declared The King of the Hill by winning the outlaw race, which is well deserved since he is an awesome skater and also by the way has freaking mad driving skills.
Toti Bicileta was second with Adrian Leon Suñol coming in third and Oscar Archibaldo Rodriguez Escoin swooping the fourth position riding on the new LOBO Kraken Downhill series wheels.
During the Friday outlaw race we’ve run across the guys from Netherlands, Robbert and Jordi, with whom we already had a chance to skate at KnK in the past and at Castell de Castells freeride the next day.
Castell de Castells freeride
As I mentioned before, for our last day in the longboard paradise we decided to visit Castell de Castells freeride event organized by the guys from FreeDivision Crew. The freeride was a full weekend event but because of our flight we only attended the first day.
Castell de Castells is located in the mountains of south-east Spain. The town itself is very small and only has around 500 residents, but the freerides were organised on a public road connecting it with the next city.
When you look at the spot on findhills you might not be impressed because it’s only an average 6% grade, nearly 16% steepest point, barely 3 kilometres and just a few corners and sweepers but the point of view changes once you get inside that shuttle bus.
Believe me, it’s awesome. The whole course is not very demanding but you build up speed fast, the road is wide, the pavement is smooth and the corners are crazy-steep. What more could a skater ask for. We took some photos, had lots of fun and went back to Salsito with no losses.
Overall we had a great time!
We did everything we wanted to, including a very hard test of the new and improved cores in all models of LOBO Wheels, which by the way turned out great.
We filmed a lot of clips and snapped some photos to share amongst friends and homies but what is the most important thing, we got to skate with cool people, had a lot of fun and charged our batteries to help us survive the winter break.
Big thanks to David from Salsito House, who once again welcomed us in his home and proved to be a great host and thanks to Melvin for helping us record a sweet run of Rafał on Psychospot.
I’m pretty sure we will come back next year because Gnarlicante still has so much to offer and it only gets better and better.
In the past, I’ve seen some black snapback hats with white salt marks, guys squeezing sweat from their helmets and have spent a lot of hours travelling in a car smelling of skaters. Although this liner might not be helpful for people who hardly break a sweat while skating, I think some of you might find it interesting.
It consists of 5 thin and lightweight layers of fabric that breathe and absorb sweat, while simultaneously reduce odour. Furthermore, it also eliminates fog buildup, making it a good add-on to a full face helmet.
Application to any head gear is super easy. First you peel off the label covering the adhesive, then you place it inside your helmet or hat and finally firmly press it along the edges to make it stick.
Designed to not damage the interior of your headgear, it’s also easily replaceable. The brand offers two grades of adhesive, standard for helmets, and extra strength adhesive for streetwear hats.
Depending on how much you sweat while skating, NoSweat recommends replacing the liner after every use, but you can probably use it for maybe 2-3 sessions.
Currently they only ship to the US and Canada, but the brand wants to expand internationally. For more into, visit the NoSweat website.
In conclusion, I like the idea and the easy application. Making a helmet less stinky is always great and avoiding sweat burning your eyes is welcomed. But I didn’t really find any info regarding the price and how much sweat it actually absorbs. All in all, if it works, it ain’t stupid.
What do you think about NoSweat liners?
Do you find this product useful or do you think it’s totally unnecessary? Would you use it? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
September marked our last skate trip of the year and we decided to explore Switzerland and end our trip with our first French event, Go-Goats Freeride.
The second edition of the Go-Goats Freeride took place on September 23 until the 25th. Organised by Laféedesrations Derideàroulettes, everything ran smoothly and the event had a super chill vibe to it.
While the price was more expensive for non-members, we really got our money’s worth. The inscription was 85 euros for men and 75 euros for women, a mere 10 euros increase.
The road was absolutely intense and super fun. The upper part of the track was fast and narrow and got your heart pumping. Once you got past the first two corners, it started getting interesting. The middle section had an open view of the road and tightly packed corners. Followed by a second fast straight leading into the final hairpin and finally, the finish line.
With a top speed of around 80 km/h, 13 corners packed into 2,3 km and an average grade of 10 %, everybody felt their legs in the evenings.
In addition to the great track, the camp was placed right next to the end of the track, on a big parking lot. In the middle of it was a big tent where riders had breakfast and lunch (included in the price), a beer and a big party in the evening.
In conclusion, I would recommend visiting Go-Goats freeride at least once. Everybody was super friendly, the track was immensely fun and the level of skating is super high. Besides the hospitality, the surrounding is also beautiful and offers much needed relaxation after a hard day of skating.
For more info about Laféedesrations Derideàroulettes and their activities, visit their website.
Last summer, the Devastation Longboard Crew from Romania organised their first big event, Transylvania Downhill. 124 riders attended the event for four days and apparently everyone had a great time.
Adi Shor, one of the organisers, says that they received great feedback so far and they expect more people to show up next year.
Quite a few people announced that they’re coming so we will put the limit to 250 riders. Eventually, if needed, we can extend it to 300. 100 riders for the downhill race and 150 just for the freeride. The event will last 6 days and the track will be a bit longer, with 0.7km adding to it by one hairpin on top and two more on the bottom ~ Adi Shor
In addition to the extended riders limit and the total length of 5.2 km for the race, the organisers plan on making additional improvements.
Next year, riders will enjoy Transylvania Downhill for 6 days total. The first day will be reserved for arrivals and registration. The following three days will host the freeride and the final two days, the downhill race. Adi also noted, that they plan on expanding their working crew to help run things smoother.
As per usual, riders will use a gondola as a shuttle. But rather than getting your skate shoes muddy, the paths will be improved with stairs and a nice walking surface.
Furthermore, the crew will also install additional side ramps on the freeride / slide jam area. A halfpipe is also to be expected at the chill zone. In regards to entertainment, the crew will set up a big screen Xbox game projection, videos and other activities. They also have big plans for the party area with the Astronaut Kru Soundsystem.
For season 2017, the Devastation crew announced three events in total, including:
Transylvania Downhill / July 3rd – 9th
Cincis Skate / August, 11th – 13th
Transylvania Freeride / August 31st – September 3rd
New to their agenda is Cinics Skate. This downhill competition by the Lake Cinicis, features a 3 km long downhill track including sweapers and a top speed of over 80 km/h. This event is manly dedicated to locals, as a national championship stage, but everyone is welcome to join the fun.
The Romanian crew also has another event up their sleeve, the Transylvania Freeride. Held in Pasul Valcan, on the same mountain as their Downhill edition, but on a different ski resort. As the most hardcore race track the crew ever skated, this 4 km long track has the steepest point of 25 %.
Juergen “Ill Eagle” Gritzner‘s pro model longboard deck by KebbeK Skateboards has finally got it’s own promo video. We are stoked to finally see Juergen back on screen since he went under the radar after the “Lost in Havana” premiere at KnK last summer.
KebbeK Skateboards completely redid their lineup and presented the new longboard decks at ISPO 2016 in Munich. We were stoked to see Juergen’s pro model in the stack, representing the Austria’s finest.
Watch the video and read the rest of the post to learn more about JuergenGritzner Topmount 38 longboard deck and its features.
The Juergen Gritzner Topmount 38 longboard deck features
The Juergen Gritzner Topmount 38 is a versatile directional top mount longboard deck which features a fully functional kick-tail, flushed mount and 9 ply maple construction.
The board is 38 inches long, 9.75 inches wide and it provides multiple wheelbase options, ranging from 23.8 up to 27 inches. It features a micro drop and a 0.5 rocker concave for perfect freedom over your foot placement, while providing a good locked in feeling.