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SX start hills to become VIP beer gardens?

16 06 2017

With the news that BMX freestyle had been added to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic program the BMX racing community is all a buzz with talk about the potential impact on BMX racing in upcoming Olympic events.

One big question to come out of this discussion?

Are the Olympics/Supercross(SX)-style tracks’ days numbered?

Signs are beginning to point to “yes”.

According to Mike Carruth on VintageBMX.com,

We are already seeing a gradual departure from the 8M hill, via the UCI rules for 2017, which allow World Cup races to be run off of 5M or 8M hills. To me, that is the beginning of the end for the 8M hill, but it is going to take a while. If BMX Racing gets dropped from the Olympics, as many expect in 2024 or 2028, that will further accelerate the demise of the 8M hill. By then, most of those hills will be 10 yrs old, and will have lived a full life.

But what will become of these massive –now more or less obsolete– structures in this non-SX BMX future?

Well, Carruth has a solid idea that I think we can all get behind:

Then, they [the 8M starting hills] can be converted to stadium seating, with a VIP beer garden at the top.

I think he may be on to something with this idea.

This might just return BMX racing to its former glory.

I say cheers to that.

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Mongoose serious about racing comeback

31 05 2017

Back in December, we got word that Mongoose was making a racing comeback.

They kicked things off with a line of affordable, race-ready complete bikes that were available at mongoose.com and Amazon.

Now, it appears that Mongoose is upping the ante and expanding their race line —from four to eight models–for the 2018 model year.

According to a writeup in the Wisconsin State Journal, one reason for the expansion of their BMX category, specifically the race category, is the increased exposure BMX racing has received since its Olympic debut.

Another reason, according to Brian Baldis, Director of Product Development for Mongoose, is:

“…parents like to put their kids in those kind of formatted sports, versus freestyle, which is still the bulk of the BMX marketplace.

“Racing is seeing some uptick because it has a time, location, adult supervision and feels very much like Little League in that way. It’s been great for youths getting back on bikes in that way.”

That’s great to hear, considering the gloom and doom on Internet Forums over the past few years when the topic of participation rates came up.

Will this translate into more Mongooses at the local track?

Time will tell.

But in any event, it’s great to have this iconic brand back in the BMX race scene again.





A cruiser by any other name

29 05 2017

As many of you know, the BMX cruiser class had its orgins with the classic beach cruiser.

In fact, up until Craig Kundig (of RRS bikes) put one of his racers on a 24″, race cruisers were generally 26″ bikes.

Yet with the many changes and improvements made to 24″ race bikes over the ensuing decades, the “cruiser” moniker stuck.

BMX legend Eric Rupe was around for those early days (and has continued racing through to the present day) seems to think that the “cruiser” name should be changed.

In the recent PULL magazine “Cruiser Edition”, Rupe was quoted as saying the following:

An interesting take…yet granted, something I have also pondered.

It reminded me of a conversation I had a few years ago at Interbike.

I was talking to a vendor that produced beach cruiser-related accessories.

She saw that my tag read “Cruiser Revolution” and asked about it. I explained that my site covered “BMX cruisers” not the “beach cruisers” that she made parts for.

She got upset with me and said “those aren’t ‘cruisers’! You need to change your name.”

I laughed it off but she seemed a little too hung up on it so I moved along to another booth.

To me, while there definitely has been a revolution in the design and quality of modern-day BMX cruisers (see what I did there?) I think maintaining the “cruiser” name is a good thing…it reminds us of the how this type of bike came about but it also lets us redefine what it means as the years go on.





PULL magazine dedicates issue to Cruisers

17 05 2017

The May issue of Pull Magazine showed up on my doorstep yesterday (on #TwoFourTuesday appropriately enough).

I had been waiting on this one with some anticipation ever I since I got word that they would be dedicating the issue to Cruisers.

Drew Motley , 2016 National #1 Cruiser Champ,  graces the cover.

Inside, Motley also gets a fairly in-depth interview talking about a whole range of things, including how Motley bested the comp (at the Grands) with a belt drive.

Another big part of the issue is their list of the 40 most iconic cruisers.

I think they made the right call (at least from a racing perspective) for the #1 placeholder.

The RRS 24 was truly a game changer in the cruiser scene.

Craig Kundig’s decision to put one of his racers on a 24″ instead of the more commonplace 26″ bikes (of the time) truly set a new path for race cruisers.

However, I’m bit a surprised by what got left off the list…but I guess you need to generate a little controversy with the readership to get people talking about it.

Plenty of other cruiser-related stuff in the issue for you take a gander at too. I’ll let you check those out on your own.

All in all, a solid issue by PULL.

Nice to see them giving cruisers some love.





BMXers with a badge

12 05 2017

When you watch enough police shows on TV, it’s inevitable you’ll come across the line, “Turn in your badge”. It’s usually directed at a cop that’s raised the ire of the by-the-book chief and he’s getting yelled at for working outside the lines…but always with the best of intentions.

In the case of former BMX Pros turned cops, Stu Thomsen and Robbie Miranda, the phrase “Turnbar to badge” seems more appropriate.

Behindthebadgeoc.com profiled the two riders recently and it looks like they have transferred their passion for racing to catching the bad guys.

I suppose it doesn’t hurt that they get to use their bike skills while doing their job.

Imagine fleeing the scene and seeing Stu Thomsen or Robbie Miranda chasing you? You might as well stop and turn yourself in. You’re not getting away from either of them.

Heck, Robbie isn’t even shy about sending his police department issued MTB off the Megaramp….so there’s really no limit to how far they’ll go to chase down the bad guys.





Turbo set to thrill at Worlds

2 05 2017

If you’re a 50-something cruiser rider prepping for the Worlds this year…there’s a good chance you’re going to see a familiar face in the gate with you come race day…Turbo Harry Leary!

That’s right, the former AA-Pro from the golden era of BMX (now racing in 56-60 Cruiser) is still going strong.

 

But don’t take my word for it though…check out this clip from the 2015 Grands…Leary still lives up to the moniker, Turbo.

I’m really looking forward to seeing footage of his class at the Worlds, it should be a good one!

 

Postscript: Wouldn’t it be great to see Eric Rupe, Greg Hill and Stu Thomsen (…and maybe a few more of the old school pros to round out the field) all back in the gate at the same time some time in the future? I think a lot of old school heads would explode (in a good way) if that happened.





Take a chrome Speedwagon home

19 04 2017

And now to add a bit more sizzle to the souped up S&M Speedwagon 24S&M has dropped the chrome version!

Hot damn, this looks good.

I’m kinda sweatin’ this frame now.

Check the previous post for more details on the updated Speedwagon 24…and of course, hit up your S&M dealer to score one of these bad boys.

 

(Pics: Cheap Goods BMX)