Major Stok’em 5 — 4/6

What has become nothing less than a Tri-State Area tradition for kicking off the season, Major Stok’em, is back again for the 5th year running, and it looks like it’ll be another great race. Over the years Major Stok’em bloomed from a local outlaw race to a fully sanctioned event, drawing riders from as far west as California, and far south as Puerto Rico in recent years. This year event organizer Adam Dabonka is changing it up by introducing a new points/bracketing system, which we’ll talk about a little later.

ms5_flyer

It’s all going down on Saturday, April 6th at the Palisades Interstate Park in Fort Lee, New Jersey — located directly across the Hudson River from New York City. As of this post there were no times listed on the website, but if you go by last year’s schedule registration should begin at 8:30, practice heats around 10AM, and the first racing heat at 11:00AM. If you’re late you’re not racing — so make sure you’re on time! This also means you’ll want to be in and parked before 10AM if you’re a spectator since you won’t be able to get down the hill while there are heats racing; parking is free and there are over 100 spots located at the bottom of the race course. Bustin’ Boards is scheduled to host a Highest Ollie contest after the race so pack a board with a kicktail as well. As of right now this is strictly a downhill race, with no plans for a slide jam.

The course itself is approximately 1/4 mile long, with one crash corner at the end (see Major Stok’em 3). Riders will assemble single file after their heat and walk back to the top for their next race. In addition to helmets and gloves, knee pads are also required.majorstokem5aerial_view Registration is $35 and opens on Saturday, March 30th at 9:00AM; it will be capped to a limited number of riders, although they’re still working on figuring out the exact number. This is a week before the event, so it gives you time to confirm your schedule and find any change left in between the couch cushions. There are only two classes this year: Open and 13-and-Under, which should be offset by the points system (discussed below). The registration process is a little complicated, so read the directions on the website a couple of times in advance. Basically, you put $0.01 down to register via PayPal, then pay $35 cash at the event.

New this year will be the points/bracketing system they’re using. Every registered rider will race in 4 heats comprised of random racers all competing against each other to win points depending on how you place. A win gets you 5 points, 2nd place gets you 3 points, 3rd place gets you 2 points, and 4th place gets you 1 point. At the end of everyone’s 4 races all the points will be tallied together, with the top 16 point winners advancing to the Finals round. Finals will be a classic bracket style downhill race, with the top two riders from each heat advancing to the next round until we have a winner for Major Stok’em 5. It’s a cool idea because it guarantees that you’ll get to race 4 runs, and will still allow for classic, exciting elimination racing in the end.

We covered a lot pretty quick, so read everything again and check the Major Stok’em F.A.Q. section for anything we didn’t cover. Also join the Facebook Event to see the discussion and who else is planning on being there.

We’ll keep you updated with any changes and confirm the times as we get closer to race day.

3rd Annual Central Massachusetts Downhill, Slide Jam and Freestyle Skate Competition on SUNDAY!

The day that many of us have been waiting for since last year’s event is nearly upon us: the 3rd Annual Central Massachusetts Downhill,  Slide Jam and Freestyle Skate Competition is going down THIS SUNDAY (8/12) in Harvard, Massachusetts. Last year’s race was one of the biggest and most fun events that went down in the Northeast and this year’s certainly doesn’t look to be any smaller or less fun.

The event is hosted on a closed road, features a 128-racer downhill bracket, slide jam with judge panel, longest slide, and flatland competitions, shuttles back to the top and LOTS OF PRIZES. Mike Girard, the host of the event, does an unreal job organizing this thing so you can expect one of the smoothest run events you’ve been to in a long time, despite the number of people that are sure to be there (hundreds, at a minimum). I know both the Earthwing and Bustin crews will be coming up from NYC to attend, along with skaters from Washington, D.C., Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Upstate New York — this is truly one of the best events that always draws some of the most experienced skaters from all over the Northeast.

 

Registration and entry fees can be bought and handled over on the Eventbrite page that Mike set up for the event. You must pre-register in order to race — this isn’t something you want to miss out on by not getting one of the last available spots. You’ll also need a copy of the waiver to race, which you can find here.

**PRO TIP FOR SPECTATORS AND RACERS ALIKE: There’s a ton of poison ivy that lines the side of the race course and road in general. No exaggeration, you will get poison ivy if you’re not careful. I got lit up with it on my legs last year and lots of the guys who crashed said it added insult to injury when it popped up all around their road rash. Be careful whether your skating or spectating, pants and long sleeves might be a good idea.**

Another big rule for the event that will be strictly enforced is the alcohol policy. The main police contact from the Town of Harvard has told Mike that they will shut the event down with no warning if anyone is drinking alcohol at all. This is a very serious threat especially since Harvard is a dry town, so they’ll have 0 tolerance for it. Smoking the Devil’s Lettuce should also be refrained from — it’s just common sense. Let’s not do anything to jeopardize the event, a lot is on the line, including an unreal day — DON’T BE THAT GUY (or girl)!

Schedule for event day is as follows:

8:00 AM: Rider check-in, equipment checks, waivering
9:00 AM: Practice runs start
10:45 AM: First DH heats
2:30 PM: End of DH; Beginning of slide jam
5:00 PM: End of Slide Jam; Road re-opens
5:15 – 5:45PM Podium awards

As I stated earlier, Mike does a great job organizing and running the event, so expect things to stay on schedule for race day.

What’s on the line besides a bunch of gear? How about a total cash purse of $2,000 distributed amongst the downhill and freeride races. Cash purse distributed as follows:

DOWNHILL:

  •  Open DH
    • 1st $500
    • 2nd $250
    • 3rd $100
  • Womens DH
    • 1st $150
    • 2nd $75
    • 3rd $50

FREERIDE:

  • Freeride – Soft Wheel open:
    • 1st: $300
    • 2nd: $150
    • 3rd: $50
  • Freeride – Hard Wheel open:
    • 1st: $150
    • Runner Up: $75
  • Freeride – Women’s:
    • 1st: $100
    • Runner up: $50

Expect vendors to also be on the scene selling some of their ware for cheap. I know Phat DeanZ will be in attendance with gear, as I’m sure many of the other sponsors will be. Mike also announced that they’ll be selling 200 hi-res versions of the above flyer for a $1 a piece which will definitely serve as a nice keepsake from the event and make for some pretty bad ass wall-art. UPDATE 1: Jeff Vyain from Bustin’ Boards just posted that the Bustin’ crew will be traveling with a limited number of boards that they’ll be selling at a discount (most likely around 20%) for people to pick up. If you’re interested you should hit him up early on Facebook or e-mail to make sure they don’t go before you even get a shot.

I can’t wait to see everyone there — if anyone has any questions e-mail Mike Girard at mikegirard@loadedboards.com or post over on the event’s Facebook page