Downhill Disco

Check out Dan Bourqui’s Downhill Disco edit:

The Downhill Disco is an yearly San Diego event which mixes disco music with longboarding, downhill skating, jump ramps and even a smaller megaramp like gap. It also features a mini ramp jam, disco night and Sunday races that are not showcased in this video clip. The entire event feels more like a weekend festival than a contest.

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Switchbacks Series in Portland

Stoked to announce that the 2014 Switchbacks series will once again be going off this year. The permits are rolling and I will be making my way back north to PDX in a week to dial in the final details. For those unaware the Switchbacks Series is a free competition that is fully permitted in Downtown Portland OR. This is the backbone of the Portland Downhill community bringing riders of all ages and skill levels together for a fun competition. The race format is 6 man heats race every position out, providing competitors with at least 3 race heats during the day. The hill is open for everyone to skate throughout the competition and it tends to draw a few hundred competitors and spectators. At the end of the competition a BBQ and raffle is hosted at Rip City Skate. Year after year this event has been a huge success in both participation and community integration, and is simply one of the most fun informal event series in downhill skateboarding in the Pacific North West. For details on the event June 1st please visit our Facebook Event Page.

The format of this race makes it seem like it might be fun for all skill levels, from the casual downhiller to a competitive regular. I might have to check this out.

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Yachts, race cars and skateboards

This year’s entry into the next great skateboard fabrication method comes from N2R Skate, which is a side venture from a company that has been making boat hulls using a sandwiched composite technology from a Swedish company named DIAB. It’s apparently used in private jets, boats, skis, trains, submerged water vehicles, and now skateboards. The main advantage they are pushing is that this would be the last longboard you’d ever need to buy, since it’s virtually indestructible and is 25% lighter than standard longboards. To be sure, they show these boards taking some incredible abuse with the implied assumption that the performance would not be effected as a result. They drive a car over the board, which is not that big of a deal considering I’ve seen an Uncle Wiggley wood/fiberglass composite board survive an encounter like that during the 80’s. However, some of the other puncture tests are pretty impressive. Of course this technology comes with a price tag. Remember, this is for yachts and race cars. During the kickstarter phase they are offering a “strongly discouted price” of 179€ or 242$ for the deck alone. Pictures and videos after the jump.

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Battle of the blands

Enjoy, if you can, these two music videos with downhill skateboarding themes. I think the first one is actually a commercial for Kia. The first is Ivan Gough & Feenixpawl ft. Georgi Kay – In My Mind (Axwell Mix) [OFFICIAL VIDEO] Thank god. I’ve been burned on those unofficial videos before. I never got my money back, it was a hard learned lesson. The second video is for the song Puppy by Netsky. You can relax though, it’s another official video. (Don’t get me started…)

– Thanks to Matthijs for having poor taste in music.

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Catalina Classic

I love watching old footage of skateboarding on TV, and it has nothing to do with the abundance of mustaches. This is almost 20 minutes of an ABC broadcast of the Catalina Classic from 1977, uploaded by someone at NHS who has resurrected the Roadrider brand. The cast of characters in these events is no more cartoonish than you’d find at today’s events, but man the 70’s were corny. Downhill, slalom and freestyle are shown, with a bunch of names you’ll recognize if you follow skateboard history, or even had a subscription to Thrasher in the first few years. The slalom guys had it dialed in, but the downhill guys (I’m going to catch flack for this) look like they would get smoked by today’s downhill crew with all the speed wobbles in evidence. Those guys need sails. Check it out after the jump.

– Thanks to Matthijs for the tip

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The Smith’s energy is quite jocular.

Sport sails allow you to use a shorter board on downhill runs so you don’t, you know, look like a kook. Title quote comes from about 2:40. It was either that or “I’d love to see this in the Olympics.”

– Thanks to Ashley Mott for the tip.

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There’s carving…

And there’s really carving. Sa ka roulé has a lot of pictures combined with a lot of words that I can’t read either. It’s a downhill board that looks sharp, heavy, and fast. This is at least the third post I’ve done on skateboards carved out of a solid block of wood, but it’s not the last. I’ve got another one in language I can read coming up shortly. Sadly, it’s also not the first time I’ve used the carving joke.

Old guys skateboard, slightly different angle

The San Francisco Chronicle has a very short piece on 76 year old downhill enthusiast Lloyd Kahn who’s only been skating for about 11 years.

– Thanks to Eric Cherry for the tip.

Downhill tailgating

Here’s some pretty cool POV footage of some downhill action courtesy of Madrid rider Zak Maytum, who starts out at the back and ends up passing everyone at least once. This reminds me of the old Omnimax footage of the rollercoaster ride and corvettes driving down a windy road. Iggy and the Stooges on the soundrtack too. Geez, I must have downhill on the brain, this is two Maryhill posts in a week.

UPDATE: Duh. I forgot the video, but it’s there now.


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