Archives: This is Sheffield

Canadian Open

What can I say? I am pretty speechless after the Canadian Open DH at Crankworx to be honest. I guess I can start with the wise words of James Crossland, ‘fuck backflips’. I think he is right too, the premier event of Crankworx was undoubtedly the classic DH race of the Canadian Open over the more-watched slopestyle.

The course is one of the best on the mountain here, and that is saying something. Riders start up on Schleyer/Joyride  splitting right onto Joyride and then cutting under the Fitz lift line. This is where the magic happens that separates the race from other events at Crankworx, and even Worldcups-Hecklers rock.


Hecklers rock is something else…..Fuck knows how many people where on the rock today, what I do know is there was a strict rule of ‘NO SHIRTS ON THE ROCK’ and that everyone was going mental. Oh man, riders on the lift were fueling the fury by dropping  horns off into the crowd and also providing someone to heckle in between riders. My fave was ‘RENTAL, RENTAL, RENTAL’ when anyone with a rental bike was cruising up overhead. I like to imagine that these people didn’t know what was going on yet it encouraged them to take up this awesome sport.

Horns were flying everywhere

Geddes

Rachel Atherton was up there on the rock, she was the but of one of the popular chants, but she didn’t wanna’ play and therefore I have not seen her tits.

Ha, GAAAAAYYYYY

Ben Reid

Reid

After Heckle rock the rest of the track was the same old Canadian Open, FAST, dusty, holey and  manly. There is a new section down low where the trail crew basically fucked a load of tree’s over and cut a swath about 12feet wide through the forest. They kindly left all the stumps in and let us all smash the hell out of it to make sure it was rutted and blown out come race day. It was truly impressive watching these boys smashing through the brown pow, and coupled with the light filtering through the tree’s it made for some banger light for the POD’s. As ever Raff Dice provided us with the nugg’s.

This section is SICK, and holey as dear Lizer's bucket

At the end of the Day it was Smith that took the win with a convincing 5second lead. 3 out of 3 for the Canadian, successful week at work eh. All said and done though, I think the winner should have been changed to Duncan Riffle…..this dude did more for his sponsors in this run than he could do with a Worldcup podium. Riffle smashed into the Hecklefest area only to stop on the top of the rock, whip his goggles of and chugged two beers before getting back to the task in hand. Legend.

Joyride:the finals.

The Joyride Slopestyle, the penultimate day of the Crankworx festival has been and gone. The less than exciting finals, due to 7 out of 8 riders crashing out, left a relatively unknown rider taking the win from more established names. I know racing is racing, and presumably slopestyle is slopestyle, but a lot of people would have liked to see them running the finals again, although I am well aware that would be unfair in reality. The Slopestyle always surprises me in how quick the whole thing is, you spend ages battling though the crowd, getting ‘pumped’ and seemingly spending ages on the phone to your friends in a vain effort to find everyone (which never works) and then before you know it; done. Thats it, it was all over when some skinny jean clad kid took his Hardtail mountainbike, which I use loosely as I don’t think it would have faird too well on an actual mountain, on a straight airing victory lap down the course much to the confusion of many of the crowd.

After re-reading the paragraph above I believe I have been a bit negative, I am going to try again.

The Slopestyle was SICK! We started off the excitement pretty early in our house with a bit of a sign making party, we made some dreamers, drank some Growers and Wildcats, blew through some horns and drank Beers through said horns. Saturday Lad Crossland also somehow managed to build a wheel while taking part in the excitement. I can’t imagine its gonna last long mind you.

Daniella's choice was a little 'adult'

A little more family friendly?


Sheffield's own used car entrepreneur Davi Birks even turned up for a skype.

Whislter life; Skis, wheel building and Wildcat

And as this is meant to be a write up on the Crankworx Slopestyle I thought I should ass a picture involving a bike.

Teva Best Trick.

I am not 100% on what day it is today, apart from I know slopestyle is today, and I am not sure exactly when the best trick comp was. Crankworx has been a little bit of a wild week, as ever, and now I am sat at home pounding the Growers, being deafened by horns, chugging wildcat through said horns and writing offensive signs. ‘I like 2 in the pink and one in the Zink’ is Daniella’s choice, while Chelsea has opted for ‘McCaul me, maybe?’ , my personal sign will be ‘Fuck BearClaw, I will show you the Barnsley Claw’. There will also be something for Semanuk, revolving around Semen, but I am not 100% on the wording yet.

Anyway, as ever, Raff Dice has provided the bangers as Duncan was denied at border control due to an incident that I cannot talk about due to legal reasons, so have a look at these nugg’s.

Teva have a big presence out here...

Somersault

Instagram

Somersault no hands

Stoked/Pumped/Amped#blackandwhitearty

Due to injury's the cheese rolling is the only Crankworx event the Sheffield Crew entered....

Crankworx-Whip off Champs.

I am running a day late I know on this, but if anyone has ever been in Whistler will realize it gets pretty wild here. I am using this brief sober period to update you guys that have the honor of being stuck in Yorkshire (do we have any followers from outside Yorkshire?) but I am not gonna’ start typing  away on a tangent, I am going to let Raff Dice’s pictures do the talking.


Kerr's Whips are as big as his ego

Brendan




Craig and his girlfriend

Crankworx day 1 (actually day 2)

So the biggest  bike festival of the year is upon us, Bud light, Growers, Red Rooster, Whistler Crankworx is a go!

The first event of the Festival was called ‘Fat tire Shit’ or ‘Fat twat Clit’ or something slimier.  It involved a load of Homo’s (plus Dylan Wolsky) racing mountain bikes round some tarmac and a bit of gravel. I didn’t watch it, but google brought up this image of some Hipster riding his bike on some tarmac with a ironic mustache, probably a fixie. 


Saturday saw the first proper event, a new event called Speed and Style where riders and racer battle head to head on a dual course with 2 trick jumps. You get scored for each jump, and timed over  the track with .6sec’s up for grabs on each jump. If my calculations are correct a rider that is aiming to take the win by pining it and winning on time, with no tricks,  needs to be 1.2 seconds ahead of the trickster to head on.


Fairclough won. Nuff said on that, but I think Nick should get on this for our summer series….how about 2 big wooden booters in peaty’s dual track to separate the big dogs from the pussies. Can anyone in Sheffield actually do a trick? I imagine a lot of lame one footers taking the win……….Nick, make it happen.

Today was the Garbo DH….my favorite race in the world, and one I wish I was racing, had I not broken my collar bone AGAIN. The Garbo DH takes riders from the top of the Garbonzo zone of Whistler all the to the village in 13-20ish minutes of pure, hole filled, root infested Gnarbar (as they say out here). The winning time is looking to be sub 13mins, but as of typing the winner is still at the top of the track. I bailed early on the spectating as I am taking the last Gondola up the hill to Bivi on the Peak and watch the Meteor shower.

Needless to say the fans were out in force cheering the riders on as they send the GLC drop to flat and wobble , deoxygenated (cool word, but potentially not a word) over the finish line after one of the toughest DH races about. I saw Jack Reading being interviewed up on the big screen, someone needs to give him a lesson in not winking at the camera, but hats off to him, he is confident in the win and I hope he gets it.

www.raffaellaphoto.com

Si Paton has taken a weekend off, making the trip out here to stand in for Brad ‘SHUT THE FRONT DOOR’ Ewan….I am not sure who I prefer, but here is another rad shot from Raff Dice of some Stoked (or amped) fans. HashtagCrankworxGNAR.

www.raffaellaphoto.com

Phat Wednesday 2012: the beginning

Phat Wednesday 2012: the beginning

So, after a 3 year hiatus Canada has opened its doors for me. I am back, back in BC, back in Whistler riding my bike all summer. I have missed this place but I have also missed riding my DH bike in the last few years. The last couple of weeks have been a steep learning curve trying to get back upto speed smashing laps out behind Craig(‘s list) Evans, but with the ever-present Coast Mountain’s early season dampness hanging in the air I haven’t felt too out of place.

So last week was  the first ‘Phat Wednesday’ beer league race; a rare type of race that has helped inspire This is Sheff and the local Sheffield Wednesday night races since our initial winter duel races. The Phat Wednesday series is the most competitive ‘mates race’ in the world, where else do you get Chris Kovarik turning up to each round? OK, OK, I am aware that we get Peaty at our mates races regularly, and even a showing last year from a certain Flyin’ Brian Lopezzzzz, but…..well actually, but nothing. Peaty>Kovarik so therefore Sheffield>Whistler.

With this minor riding mecca misconception sorted out I would like to draw attention back to just how cool this concept of racing is. Anyone can do it, grab your mates, grab some timing gear and get racing. Just make sure you are doing it out the way of elderly dog walkers.


The Phat Wednesday series races every week starting off, as per tradition, with a B-line race. Everyone that would like to appear cool puts 5bucks into a pot, takes their chain off and tucks and pumps down the 6ish min track. The chainless winner takes all the spoils and the boys are separated from the men: this week I tucked my balls back up into my body and was firmly sat in the little boy’s category. Without the backup of a chain there is no recovering from blowing out a turn on B-line’s mellow pastures. A fact I found out when a SMALL drift nearly stopped me dead up high on the trail. The rest of the run went well, and I even caught the chained rider that was infront up, but the damage was done. 50something in Chainless cat is pretty lame. Evans was on a stormer, beating me by a couple of seconds even with a crash. Saturday lad beat us both. The bastard.

The win was Kovarik’s for the taking with Billinghurst and Nick Geddes rounding out the podium, all chainless. The Womens podium was the same in regards to the lack of chains on the bikes, Clair Buchard, Sarah Leishman and Maria Darquier all took home some cash.

Results are here.

So, a week has passed since that first race on B-line. This week we raced a very tiring combo of Fantastic to Lower Crank it up. Fantastic is Fant…err awesome, but Crank it up was a bit of a bastard, pretty much a sprint littered with Gas to Flats and a sketchy slippy bridge thrown in for good measure.  Never the less the crowds turned up to sprint their asses off for  their chance at Local glory, even though for the vast majority of us there is no glory involved, just pain and a slightly vommy feeling welling up inside us as we cross the line. Craig was back on form cracking a 14th out but the winner still had 9seconds on him. I bettered my abysmal result of last week and came 55nd. Still pissed off with that.

Billinghurst, Geddes and Paulo were on the steps, Gunner is fast for a Master and was stood tallest on the podium as was Strand for the ladies. Sarah second again and Maria Darquier 3rd. Also props to Raff Dice who got 13th, her first top 20, even though she spent the hour before the race pissing me off moaning about not wanting to ride.

Results are here.

Houston we have lift off.

Houston we have lift off.

There’s been a bunch of hype surrounding Cotic’s second venture into the full squish market. So as expected ,Cy Turner the one man band behind the entire brand, took his time and got it right before he released it to the masses…

We’ve got a pre-production one for a little while, for a few things… so watch this space. But Joe squeezed in a few laps today around Wharncliffe to give her a bash.

Yes it’s nearly a full steel setup, but don’t start thinking it’s heavy… with a frame weight of around  7.6 lbs including shock, it’s still a competitive trail centre weapon.

It’s a sensual ride, making love to the trail, not ploughing it. Basically, it rides light and likes to ‘pop’.

Watch this space for more bits over the next month….

Photo by Philpod.

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