With competition season well underway, spare time is becoming more scarce, for practice and development of both my timing system and helping Billy @ Kite Mechanics design the MK2’s of the Longboard and Mountainboard.
Going back as far as my last blog post (sorry it’s been a while!), a lot has changed. I finally have my Kite Mechanics Decks & sexy merch!
Exciting times, especially as I had the Mountainboard 2 weeks before the first round, of the ATBA UK Mountainboard series at Hales Superbole. I also bought a NoSno Hope brake for the Downhill rounds this year and years to come! All setup, it’s a beautiful sight and a lovely ride.. Billy has created a masterpiece that I can’t really fault! The specs are 94cm length, 30 degree tips and 1.3kg deck weight! I don’t have to tell you how easy this deck is to slide and jump.
Hales Round 1 was my 2nd and 3rd time riding the board, so I couldn’t expect much, but I liked it and can’t wait until I’m a bit more dialled to it! For boardercross, Hales is a fast track that is easy to get air on, I found this deck to be a bit too air happy over rollers I was trying to pump but manageable none the less. Where the board really performed was the downhill, though I kinda let it down with my riding, not getting a clean & fast run all afternoon. The board was grippy, easy to chuck about and super stable on tight corners and berms. I can’t wait for Perth, Scotland for the Round 2 DH on 7th June now, but where this board will perform best, I’d guess Ironsides Court farm, for the moment! Here’s a clip of my downhilling:
As for the Longboard Prototypes, they’re also beautiful, precisely made to my specification and feel awesome for going sideways! My favourite one is 36 inch length, dropped 2cm, tiny bit of flex, 22-24″ wheelbase. It’s setup on my 50 Degree Paris V2 trucks with the new and insanely good Cult Creators (72mm 83a). Basically slide wheels on coke..
Here’s me trying to prolong some heelside standies on the above setup (so much fuckin’ fun):
The boards aren’t perfect but I’m very confident they can be by the end of the year! A lot of people have commented they’re bloody amazing for a prototype. It’s also good to have UK designed decks made in the UK, unlike some… *cough* China MBS’ *cough*
As for the timing system side of things, progress is good, Mister Brind kindly let me and my workmate test for 3 hours, during the Hales Superbole Practice hours, on the Saturday of the competition weekend. We got some valuable data and are confident we can get the system to a stage where, as long as the start order is set, finishing order doesn’t matter and we can have up to 10 riders on track at a time! Though it probably won’t be that many, to avoid inevitable gnarly crashes.. :]
Talking to Matt after Hales Superbole Round 1, he said it’d be good to do a downhill timing demo at Cleeve Hill in June, to test if it’s ok before using it at the Round 5 Downhill at Badbury Clumps on 26th July. The tester event is free and will run for approx 4 hours from 11am. If you can, bring race numbers for easier time identification.
A lot of shit to sort at the moment, but hopefully I’ll post again soon after the Scotland DH ATBA UK Round 2 with thoughts as to how the new setup acts with a powerful brake.
Catch ya soon!
EDIT: Cheers to Clayton for helping me fix and bleed my NoSno Hope Hydraulic Brake! Look how happy this ugly fucker is :)