Video: Jeremy Ross Skates Like a Bat Out of Hell in Maine

All I can say is get ready to have a palm-sweaty good time watching this video. Jeremy, who is known to shred New England up and down with the boys from NSA and Soda Factory, tackles a big mountain in Maine and doesn’t let slower cars in the downhill lane get in his way. At some points he even “splits the gap” and goes in between two passing cars. This type of skating should never be emulated and is extremely dangerous, but boy is it fun to watch. Check it out below, it’s no wonder that everyone he passed stopped to congratulate him on not dying.

Great Northern Suck from jeremy ross on Vimeo.

Review: TR Custom Longboards “Panty Dropper”

The following review is written by guest contributor Bill Steinbacher of Nagatauck, CT. Check out our post on TR Custom Longboards here. Here’s a little bit about the rider/writer:

“I’m 29 years old and I have been skating since I was 13, however there were on and off periods over the years. Life happens, you get busy and wrapped up in bills….and money for skate equipment is nowhere to be found. I spent too much time looking at broken boards wishing I was skating. However skating has become a much more permanent fixture in my life over the past few years though, I picked up my first longboard about a year ago and have been hooked from the moment I laid down my first successful smooth slide. My favorite aspects of longboarding are simply going fast and getting sideways! Although I also do quite a bit of long distance pushing which I also love, but there is just no way to describe the feeling you get ripping down a nice smooth hill, and busting out few slides in the process. I recently attended the Central Park Race 2011 in NYC, this was my first skate event that I have attended/competed in and it was an amazing experience. I am looking forward to competing and being involved in as many events as possible, longboarding has become a true passion and I’m going to keep shredding until my legs no longer work! I recently picked up my first set of Surf-Rodz IndeeSZ, and I absolutely love these trucks. I could go on forever picking apart all the fantastic details of the truck itself, but for sake of time….just get some!”

Board stats:

  • TR Custom Longboard “Panty Dropper”
  • 39” long/ 31.5” wheelbase/ 10” at the widest 9” in the middle
  • 9 Ply/ No flex; stiff
  • Symmetrical
  • Aggressive concave
  • 1.25” drop
  • Slight kicks on nose and tail

Review:
If you are looking for a board that can do it all, TR Custom’s Panty Dropper will end that search. I have been riding this deck for a couple of months now and it really is a perfect all around board! I have used it mainly for free ride/sliding, however have done some light downhill with it as well. For free riding I set it up with Surf-Rodz INDeeSZ 177mm, Abec 11 Freerides, and Venom bushings 90a board side and 88a SHR roadside. Even with a hard bushing set up like this the INDeeSZ still turn super easy and make this set up perfect for free riding and light downhill. The combination of the aggressive concave and the 1.25” drop makes your feet feel glued to the board for slides. The board is a perfect size to whip around for all kinds of slides while still being able to keep the board under your feet and maintain control of your slides.

The symmetrical design also makes this board great for free riding. No matter which direction you come out of a slide you are set up for the rest of the hill or next slide, in other words you are never riding this board backwards. The slight upturned kicks on the nose and tail are another nice addition for free ride capabilities, however they also add to the stability of the board. The slight upturn helps deflect the force of curb shots which results in much less damage from a direct impact. Mine has taken quite a few heavy duty impacts and the nose has sustained very minimal damage, much less damage than any other board I have ridden previously. The Panty dropper also serves very well as a downhill deck; the 9 ply design makes the board super stiff and stable. The 1.25” drop also aids in the boards downhill capabilities, the drop brings you lower to the ground helping keep your center of gravity nice and solid. I really cannot say enough good things about this board, I have been more comfortable and progressed more using the TR Custom Panty Dropper than I have any other board to date.

The only somewhat negative feedback I have received from taller riders is that it felt too small for them, so if you are vertically blessed and looking into the Panty Dropper you may want to discuss a longer model option with TR Customs. I’m about 5’6” and the Panty Dropper fits me like a dream.

 

Surf-Rodz: Igniting an Industry (Part 1 of 2)

If you’ve been a Skate The East reader for any amount of time you’ve heard about Surf-Rodz and how they’ve been changing the precision game by putting prices through the floor and making trucks that ride like nothing else on the market. This past Thursday I took another trip down to Surf-Rodz to talk a little bit about both what Surf-Rodz is doing to help promote and change the longboarding industry as well as how they’re quickly changing the precision game. For this post, however, I’m going to focus on how they’re trying to change the industry as a whole, part 2 will focus on what they’re doing in terms of efficiency and how it’s a huge win for skaters everywhere.

When I say that Surf-Rodz is innovating constantly, it’s not just in the truck game (although I did see something special that I can’t talk about yet ;-)), it’s in the industry as a whole, and they aren’t just talking the talk, they’re walking the walk. When I first went down to Surf-Rodz this past Thursday I had some questions I wanted to ask that got the conversation started and showed me just how forward thinking Surf-Rodz was. If you’re a fan of the Surf-Rodz page on Facebook then you might have seen an image similar to the one I have here on the right, and if you’re like me you asked yourself, “What the hell is Surf-Rodz doing on a race car?” Luckily, I’ve got an answer, and it’s indicative of the future of longboarding. First, let’s actually look at who Surf-Rodz is sponsoring.

Rit Pustari Racing is a Top Fuel Drag Racing lead by none other than, you guessed it, Rit Pustari from Norwalk, CT. He’s been involved in racing for the past 15 years and boy does he go FAST. I’m talking 0-100mp/h in 0.1 seconds — ONE TENTH OF A SECOND! Know what else goes fast on asphalt? RKPs…are we starting to see a small connection? Surf-Rodz Road Division and Pustari Racing, both fast on asphalt, both appeal to a similar crowd. It goes even further than that though, it’s about breaking down the walls that are currently constricting longboarding from growing to it’s full potential.

So how is this all going to help longboarding as a whole? Attention. When Rit roars down the strip, although it just takes a matter of seconds, the lasting impression that Surf-Rodz is going to make on everyone from other drivers, pit crews, commentators, and spectators is putting the sport in the minds of many people who haven’t touched a skateboard since they were in their teens. It brings new attention to the sport that will inevitably attract other major sponsors, such as Nike, Addidas, RedBull, EA Sports, ESPN and similar companies, meaning new and positive change for the sport.

Expect to see some ultra-high quality banners popping up at events

These bigger sponsors will allow the sport to grow and solidify. Their involvement would mean bigger downhill and freeride competitions with real prize money, allowing a professional longboarder to make a living off of the sport they love and work tirelessly on. Could you envision a 6 city downhill racing and freeride tour? With real prize money and TV coverage, maybe with the finals even making it into the X-Games? I know I can, and it’s a vision that has potential to be converted into reality. Involvement from big, outside sponsors also means more innovation for the average rider as the sport’s increased popularity will bring incentive for bright minds to come up with new ways to design, and produce, efficient and effective longboarding equipment. Lower prices for better products? Doesn’t sound like a bad thing if you ask me.

So why haven’t we seen this before from other big players in the longboarding industry? Honestly, I don’t know. Maybe it’s because the sport is only now ready for it. With 1,200 racers at the Broadway Bomb in New York City this month and over 900 at the Board Meeting in Toronto at the beginning of the summer it’s clear that longboarding isn’t a fad that’s going away. In fact, it’s a movement that has been growing strong and steady and is just now ready to break out and grow into its shoes, so to speak.

Do we expect to see other longboard companies running out to sponsor race cars or sports teams? No, probably not, but we think you’ll start seeing a trend of longboard companies and other, “mainstream” sports companies starting to intermingle a little. It’s a sign of our sport starting to grow up and mature while still maintaining it’s special and unique culture that we’ve all come to know and love. It’s an exciting time to be in longboarding right now, we’re seeing the future become reality every day, and the best is yet to come. Surf-Rodz is leading the way by breaking out of the industry to spread the stoke, props to them for having the vision and the cajones to go ahead and take the jump! Cheers to making it better for the rest of us!

I’m including a gallery of some of the other pictures I got while down at the shop. Check out the custom board that Surf-Rodz did to match the car, talk about swag!

Ladies and gentlemen start your engines…


Video: Team Quebec Shows Soldiers of Downhill

This past Thursday I took a trip down to Surf-Rodz again and boy do I have a killer post coming up. While that’s in progress I wanted to update with something quick since it’s been a few days. Team Quebec showed up to Soldiers of Downhill which went down a couple weekends ago and produced (as usual) a stunning video showing off some of the best skating from the weekend.

Check it out, enjoy, and stay tuned for our Surf-Rodz post tomorrow!

Soldier of Dowhill 2011 from Team Quebec on Vimeo.

What’s this?! Bustin’ and Surf-Rodz team up for custom INDeeSZ!

I saw these puppies show up in some pictures from Jeff Vyain a little while ago, but didn’t think much of it since I figured they were one-offs for him and the guys at Bustin’. Fortunately for most of you, I was wrong. Instead, Bustin’ teamed up with our favorite truck company, Surf-Rodz, to bring you some custom INDeeSZ and boy are these things sweet.

What makes them so sweet? 3 colors for $119. I’ll say that again, this is a 3 color, precision CNC truck for $119. That’s only $20 more than the Black HARDcoreSZ special that Surf-Rodz has been running. They’re also laser engraved with the Bustin’ and INDeeSZ/Surf-Rodz logos on both sides. They are 8mm fixed axles at 177mm, perfect to get sidewaySZ and still maintain grip through hard carves and corners. That means tons of versatility on the smoothest riding indy trucks you’ll ever find. This is such a new announcement that they don’t even have a full spec sheet available until tomorrow, so we’ll update again when they post one.

Ever since Surf-Rodz launched their 8mm line we’ve been seeing prices just plummet through the floor. I can’t wait to see what happens when they’re able to finally do the same with 8mm RKPs. The precision market is changing…don’t say we didn’t say so!

You can find the Bustin’ INDeeSZ trucks by themselves by checking out the Bustin’ Store and by ordering a new complete (like the Robot!).

In Brief: Soldiers of Downhill 2011

Unfortunately I couldn’t make it out to Soldiers of Downhill, which went down this past weekend in Bainbridge, OH, but I’ve heard some great things and figured I’d share what little information I’ve learned through browsing the web and the guys over at Bustin’ who make the trek out to Ohio and competed in the legendary event. The event apparently went well once the weather cleared up yesterday and allowed the skating to get a lot faster and more competitive. From what I’ve heard, it ended up being a very fun, fast, and competitive day. On their way back to Brooklyn early this morning “King” Salomon Lang from Bustin’ tweeted me saying:

Soldiers of Downhill is prob the craziest thing I have done. And loved it all! @
@stayskatin
solomon la

He went on to post that the hill was absolutely insane, causing most to eat either some hay or asphalt. Probably the best quote from his post was how his respect for the downhill scene is growing by leaps and bounds. Pretty cool to see how the NYC push scene is breaking out and starting to dominate in downhill and freeride as well.

“Everyone who tackled this hill is INSANE! My respect for the DH scene increases with each event and my need for speed grows with it. I’m so stoked for next years events! Speed or Cry!” – Solomon Lang

Then Mike Dallas of Bustin’ posted this morning talking a little about Bustin’s performance at the race. Team member Will Royce (who shredded at the Central MA Event) skated hard and earned a spot into the final heat, poised for what looked like a possible spot on the podium, when a nasty crash brought him back to 4th place. Overall it was still a very successful weekend for the Bustin’ Boards crew who also saw team rider Jeff Vyain take 2nd place at Adrenalina Plano, TX on Sunday.

The only results I could find were a quick comment on the Facebook Event that said:

  1. Niko Desmarais
  2. AJ Haiby
  3. Jahcoop
  4. Will Royce

If anyone has official results/people’s full names e-mail me (mike [at] skatetheeast.net) or comment on our Facebook page.

Below is a raw edit from a practice run showing Jester Hill and some of the gnarly pavement at the bottom. You can see how fast some of these runs can get in the video and with a pretty tight course I can only imagine how sweet some of the pack footage will be! I’ll update you guys as I learn more, until then, enjoy.

Congrats to East Coaster Jeff Vyain @ Adrenalina Skateboard Marathon Plano, TX!

 A big and heartfelt congrats goes to Jeff Vyain who placed 2nd in today’s Adrenalina Skateboard Marathon in Plano, TX! We did a post outlining all the details of the Adrenalina Marathon in New York this past summer, which Jeff won. I had the pleasure of talking to Jeff for a while at the Central MA Event, he’s a super nice guy and is a killer skateboarder. Great work and congratulations!

The race in Plano today was the third leg of the Adrenalina Skateboard Marathon series before the 1st World Championship coming up on November 5th in Hallandale Beach, Florida, less than a month away. The second leg of the series, in Puerto Rico, was won by Kiefer Dixon who has made a name for himself by also winning this year’s Broadway Bomb (NYC), Mini-Bomb (NYC), Broad Street Bomb (Philly), Shoekill (Philly) and a couple more. Kiefer took home 6th place in Texas, having been bumped out of the top 5 by Robin McGurik by about 20 seconds. The East Coast, and New York in particular, seems to have quite the grasp on the push race scene right now with 50% of the top 10 being from the East! Keep killin’ it guys!

Top ten:

  1. Paul Kent (Portland, OR)
  2. Jeff Vyain (New York, New York)
  3. Enrique Cubillo (New York, New York)
  4. Jason Yerke (Lansing, MI)
  5. Robin McGurik (Portland, OR)
  6. Kiefer Dixon (Bronx, New York)
  7. Kyle Vervalin (McKinney, TX)
  8. David Mitchell (Keizer, OR)
  9. Andre Hippix (Brooklyn, NY)
  10. Eric Palmer (Scituate, MA)

Jeff (left) and Paul Kent (right) with their checks on the podium. Photo credit to Surf-Rodz

Sketch Skateboards Halloween Costume Jam — 11/5 Chesapeake, VA

Sktech Skateboards is hosting the Halloween Costume Jam on Indian Creek Road / Walston’s Lane in Chesapeake, VA at 1:00PM on November 5th (allowing you to get a little extra time in that expensive costume you bought for one night). The last event these guys held (on September 10th) drew in over 150 skaters, this one already has 59 confirmed guests on Facebook with lots of time left and more sure to come without RSVPing. Like the title says, it’s a costume jam, so you should dress to impress (although you should still be able to skate…), there is a prize for best costume, so make it count!

According to the Facebook Event the majority of the day will be a freeride skate jam with competitions and prizes at the end for furthest slide, best trick, and fastest downhill speed. There are a TON of sponsors (20 at my last count) which means prizes and prizes and prizes and prizes. A raffle will be held at the end of the awards to raffle off the rest of the garb so you could walk away with something sweet even if you don’t podium. Sponsors include: Sketch Skateboards, Original Skateboards, Bustin’ Boards, Longboard Loft NYC, Surf_Rodz, Loaded Boards, Orangatang, Seesmic, Acadia Longboards (who co-hosted the last event in the Chesapeake area on September 10th), and a ton more.

Helmet and gloves are required, as always. Longboards only for competition, although all are welcome to come, jam and spectate.

 

Wrap-up: 2011 Broadway Bomb & BBQ

I think the only way to sum up what happened at the 2011 Broadway Bomb is with one word: wow. To be honest, wow isn’t even good enough to describe how amazing the event was this year. With the lead-up to the event so strong I knew it would end up being a huge deal, but I don’t think anyone could have planned for just how big it really was. My friend John, who helped me film, and I got to the meeting place near Barnard College and 116th and Broadway at around 10:30. With the race not starting till 12 we figured we would be pretty early, how wrong we were. Already a couple hundred longboarders sat buzzing about the park excited and anxious to see how many people would actually be coming, by 11:15 it was clear that the event would indeed be massive as the influx of longboarders continued at a heavy rate bringing the numbers well over 1,000 by the time the race started at noon.

That’s right, over 1,000 longboarders actually came to this year’s Broadway Bomb. Words cannot begin to describe the amount of energy and enthusiasm that could be felt pulsating throughout the crowd as we ran up the hill and started to skate down Broadway, every single person was so stoked and so excited, having one of the best times of their life. Skaters from all walks of life, ability, and location showed up this year, with people from as far away as Australia and California coming to see what the Bomb had to offer this year. Big names also came out in numbers this year, James Kelly of Skate House Media and the Arbor Collective made his first ever appearance in NYC for the Bomb and was joined by Brian Bishop and the Concrete King himself, Salamon Lang, along with other big faces such as Max Dubler and Paul Kent. Talk about a STACKED event!

What was previously a major concern for us and other people, and even an issue in years past, the NYPD was amazingly helpful throughout our entire time on the road. Instead of pulling longboarders over or trying to break the pack or even the whole event up, the NYPD were right there shutting down roads and intersections at various points so we could safely pass through. I rode next to two NYPD scooters for a little while, it was a very pleasant and nice experience knowing that we were on the same side. Without the fear of having to deal with the police everyone was able to skate care-free and fully enjoy what an amazing event the Bomb was this year.

Me with James Kelly of Skate House Media and the Arbor Collective

What might have been the best part, however, was the look on people’s faces as we passed en masse down Broadway. People stopped dead in their tracks, pulling out cell phones to quickly snap photos and take video, cheered us on, and stuck hands out for high fives. As we passed by cars drivers and passengers alike rolled down windows and pounded fists with skaters, the outcry of support was unbelievable and beyond my wildest imagination.

Of course, since this was a race to determine who the strongest city-skater in quite possibly the world is, the winners are mighty important. For the men, pushing powerhouse and recent Adrennalina Marathon Puerto Rico winner Kiefer Dixon took first place, followed closely by Steven Sanchez who actually THREW UP while riding in order to not sacrifice second place, and Robin McGuirk in third. Other notable finishes include Kaspar Heinrich, who has won more Broadway Bombs than anyone else, in 4th; Thesseus Williams, another past Broadway Bomb winner, in 10th; and Saloman “The King” Lang in 11th place. On the women’s side of things a tie for first place between Cami Best and Sarah Paulshock was followed closely by Danielle DeJesus in 2nd and Katie Fry in 3rd.

Because the NYPD was blocking off the Charging Bull Statue at Bowling Green (the official finish line) for various reasons we were forced to immediately keep skating to the East River Park where the Bustin BBQ and awards ceremony were taking place (again, with the grace of the NYPD). Although a bit of a long skate, hundreds showed up to talk and hear the results from the day’s event. Once the winners were announced people moved closer to the Williamsburg Bridge to skate and eat more food provided by the kind souls at Bustin’ Boards in Brooklyn. The BBQ was a lot of fun and provided people more time to mingle and talk about the race and also turned into a bit of a flatland session as people started getting their energy back after the race.

Overall the 2011 Broadway Bomb was by far the best event of the season that I’ve been to. The energy and enthusiasm that everyone brought to the event was unparalleled and made for an absolutely unforgettable and unbelievable time. If you were at the Bomb this year, either as a skater or a spectator, and have a story for us feel free to share it via a comment here, on Facebook, or by e-mail at mike [at] skatetheeast.net. Check out the video we put together of the race and the BBQ after as well as a slide session John and I ran into while skating around Central Park later in the day.