Major Stok’em 6 – 4/19

Major Stok'em 6 Flyer

Plug Fort Lee, NJ into your GPS and get ready, because Major Stok’em is back again on April 19th from 9AM to 5PM for its 6th year running! Major Stok’em has become one of the best events for new racers to break into the sport and see what they’re made of, even giving them a chance go toe to toe with some of the Tri-State area’s fastest on a relatively mellow course. This is the race where some of the fastest east coast riders got their start – so if you’ve been looking for an ‘entry level race’ you might not find a better opportunity this season.

The Course

Taking place at the Palisades Interstate Park in Fort Lee, NJ the Major Stok’em 6 course is set next to the scenic banks of the Hudson River, just across the river from New York City. The course is known for varying in speed depending on whether there’s a headwind or tailwind, so you’re looking at speeds that could range from a cruising 22MPH up to around 39MPH, much more mellow than what you’ll find at some of the bigger races this summer.

There aren’t any extremely technical features to navigate or anything of the sort, it’s a pretty straight forward course all in all,  running about a 1/4 mile long in total. It does feature a crash corner at the end which seems to claim far more riders than necessary but also create some exciting last minute passes.

For parents bringing their children or for riders going to the course for the first time: There’s no real address for where to park and meet. Use Google Maps and look for the Ross Dock Area, the NJ State website might also help a bit (http://www.njpalisades.org/picnic.htm#Ross). Since it’s off-season when the race goes down, parking will be free!

Major Stok'em 6

Registration

This is important because it doesn’t go down like other events, so pay close attention. Registration will be on Saturday, April 12th – exactly one week before the race. Registration is capped at 100 riders, so don’t be too late in registering or you might miss out. Registration for the event is $40.01. On April 12th you PayPal $0.01 (that’s one cent) to majorstokem@gmail.com, which reserves your spot to race. On race day, when you go to sign-in, bring $40 in cash and your waiver to finalize everything.

It can be a little confusing, so head over to the Stok’em website and read how they describe the process.

Event Schedule

This is directly from the Major Stok’em website. I’ll do my best to update it with any changes as I become aware of them.

6:30AM-8:30AM    EVENT SET-UP HAYBALES AND VOLUNTEERS

8:00AM -9:00AM  REGISTRATION PROCESS (MUST BE A PRE-REGISTERED RIDER)

9:OOAM-9:45AM   PRACTICE RUNS (LIGHT RUNS AND GET TO KNOW THE HILL)  **END OF REGISTRATION**

10:00AM                   RIDERS SAFETY MEETING NEAR THE FINISH LINE. RACE OFFICIALLY STARTS.

5:00PM                      END OF EVENT/CLEANUP

Additional Information

Go check out the FAQ over on the Major Stok’em 6 website and check out the Facebook Event as well. Spectators and non-racers will be aplenty, so even if you don’t feel like racing come out and chill as the season starts to get underway.

Wrap Up: Major Stok’em 5

majorstokem5signMajor Stok’em 5 went down this past Saturday under the George Washington Bridge  in sunny and warm (I’m not kidding, it was a beautiful day) Fort Lee, New Jersey. The race course was simple and sweet and made for some great racing for skaters of all skill levels. A quick aside: the finish line’s back drop was the George Washington Bridge and Downtown Manhattan’s skyline, with the yet-to-be-completed Freedom Tower looming large — very surreal for a downhill skateboard race.

Photo Apr 06, 12 55 41 PMThe race ran smoothly all day and the points based bracket system seemed to work very well for keeping the preliminary heats moving steadily. There were some gnarly crashes and good racing had by all during the early heats, with both skilled and novice racers being mixed in together to duke it out and see who’d be left standing. The Crash Corner lived up to its name once again, and despite new and improved custom-fitted pads the curb still laid claim to more than one knee/shin/body part that hit the gap.

Once the preliminary racing was over the Bustin’ Boards High Ollie Competition got underway. While it wasn’t run quite as smoothly as the race was, it was a ton of fun and should be a nice addition for the years to come. Towards the end it started to drag on, but Dave Aparicio sealed the deal with a 32″ ollie on a borrowed YoFace 32″ to end the competition and take home $300. Props to him, it was unreal to watch him ollie that high. Our boy Josh “Wild” Wright also put on a good showing and made it deep into the competition so props to him.

After the High Ollie Competition finished everyone was called together and the top 16 riders were announced for the final heats of racing. Our very own Connor Bewighouse made it into the top 16 on his Tutone Skateboard which we were ultra stoked about. Due to an unfortunate bump-draft incident with Anthony Flis he got taken out in the first heat of finals, but we’re proud of him and stoked none the less. In the end it came down to a super exciting race between Dejaune Jones and Rolando Martinez with Dejaune coming out ahead in the final turn to take the win. A new comer to the scene from Long Island, Christopher Lavinio, came in third with Sam Ettorre rounding out the final heat in 4th.

podium_celebration

All-in-all the event was a huge success with some great racing, fun people, and beautiful weather (despite it being a bit windy and cold in the morning). If Major Stok’em 5 is a sign of how the 2013 season will unfold out as a whole, we’re in for an even better and gnarlier season than expected.  Thanks a ton to Adam Dabonka for organizing the race, and all of the other volunteers and sponsors that came together to make it possible.

UPDATE 4/16/13: We found out that Christopher Lavinio was the previously unknown rider who placed 3rd and updated the above post accordingly. 

Check the gallery below for more of our photos from the event:

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.