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      Hopkin Skate Blog — Rob McWhinnie

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      All Moss'd Out race report

      All Moss'd Out race report

      mossd1 All Moss'd Out, was run and won on Monday. If you were not there, it was a great day and we only got a little bit wet. Here is the big grom myth about the rain: It is not more dangerous, it is just different. You'll have more fun, and it helps your freeride/slide technique. In an interview with Api in 2009 and he said this about his progression:

      I thought sliding was impossible, it wasn't until one day I was out skating and the road was wet, I tried a 180 in the rain and my board did it then it pulled back to normal and there was my first pendulum. Once I got that down I learnt a bunch of slides and variations, like colemans, 360s, stand up 180s and some switch slides.

      Back to Moss'd out. It rained all morning, roads were soaked, volunteers got wet but were stoked. All Moss'd out is held on a sweet hill in Mosman/Clifton Gardens. The locals and residents were chill, no one called the police. The ranger came for a drive by and a look, and was happy. The hill starts with a small hand hand sweep and then into a left hairpin (not that intense more of a dogleg) Another steep hill in to a right hand corner, into a hill that goes to the most intense corner, a real hairpin to the finish.  One of the great features of the course is a series of steps and pathways that take you all the way to the top in a direct line, you don't have to walk back up the road to the start.

      Central Coast represent! Central Coast represent!

      With rain on the whole road, the course went from hard to challenging. A few things happen when it rains to change a race. The speed and the racing slows down, which suits the inexperienced. Sandbagging becomes easier and more effective. Why? It becomes more effective because the competitive racers will push themselves into the corners, take more risks and crash more often. (Sandbagging is the art of starting behind the leaders, drafting or waiting for a mistake: aka doin a Bradbury). Steven Bradbury is the Australian Patron Saint of Sandbagging.

      mossd6 Racing was a series of three rounds, everyone racing each other for points to sort out the places for the final racing. Everyone moved through tot eh final tree. It was a standard tree of racing - 4 racers per race. 1st and 2nd progress to the next round. Finals and placings were: 1st Robdog 2nd Matty Rae 3rd Callum 4th Jake It was great seeing all the skaters traveling from Bathurst, Newcastle, Central Coast and Wollongong. I was disappointed that Sydney crews were not well represented, a lot of missing faces. Some of the more experienced skaters don't like to get wet anymore. Big thumbs up to Maga, Ned and Ashley for all racing on the day,  and we did have a girls final which was won by Ashley!

      The reason you go to outlaw race events You don't have to race. You can enjoy the day by, watching the racing, or getting involved and volunteering. Nick Gibbons, Rohan, Bredon and Hugh did that. They marshaled the course, did car spotting. Nick, with random help from a few groms, on the finishline was awesome. Trav managed the startline with his usual bravado. Big thank you to those guys. Rob McWhinnie organises a lot of these outlaws. It helps support our scene, and they are also community fundraisers. Money raised goes to ASRA and also to help support Rob and Maga traveling to World Cup events. It is more than just racing, they are learning and social events. Rob goes through course with all the skaters. He was giving advice on how to skate the last corner of the event, that is experience you can not get watching online videos. Skaters travel to these events, you'll met people from all over, who might invite you to skate some of their local hills one day. PLUS you get fed! Rob is a chef, he provides food for all his events. At Pumpstation there was Minestrone soup, at Moss'd Out it was freshly made ham and salad sandwiches. At Deep End on Saturday it will be sandwiches again, and Mt Keira on Sunday will be a BBQ.

      Hop's tips for wet weather events If you are coming to watch or volunteer, go get a rain poncho from the $2 shop. They usually have them, they are about $2 to $4. They'll keep you dry without having to wear heavy rain gear all day. If you racing and are worried about your board, then a few things at the end of the day's racing, will help your deck live to fight another day. Wipe it down, get all the moisture off. Turn your board upside down and spin each wheel, in a dry place, for about 2 to 5 minutes on each wheel. This will remove all the water out of your bearings, dry them out, stop them seizing up over night. You'll have to do it straight away, so on the train or bus on the way home or in the garage at home. If you have any other tips, post them up on our Facebook page or in the comments below. When are the next events? Deep End is on this Saturday 29th June Keira Kaos is on this Sunday 30th June I'll see you all there! (please note I just changed the dates, I got them wrong)

      Finishline and rego tent Finishline and rego tent

      Last hairpin Last hairpin

      mossd5 mossd4 mossd2

      Keira Kaos, the epic first Freeride

      Keira Kaos, the epic first Freeride

      keira kaos

      KEIRA KAOS!!!

      Mt Keira has long been the home to downhill skateboarding here in Sydney, after yesterdays freeride, that feeling is going to live on well into the next generation.

      closed road
      does it get any better.

      the veiw down to the gong. little did they know what was going on up the hills

      SONY DSCHow's little Callum looking up to the big guys, little does he know how much they look up to him. Style speed and steeze the micro grom is one to watch.

      With over 20 riders taking on the hill for the first time yesterday and over 55 riders in total, it was a massive turnout. gone where the pastel colored short shorts and in with the full face helmets and big wheels. no slides on this hill, its about pushing out hard, dropping your head and gaining speed, grabbing rail tight around corners and mobbing like a boss with ya mates all around you.

      quick video from the Sydney based Fang Downhill team.

      the walk wasn't ever too long, every one walked up together fueling the stoked for the next run

      Kam Kite, team rider here at hopkin and ASRA DH champion, joined Dejan Mustard and myself to spend a lazy sunday afternoon on a shortened but closed Mt Keira, showing the gromets and noobs some simple techniques for finding your apex, railing corners and holding your line.

      alright sometimes we used the car.
      Gromets riding close.
      kam jack
      awesome shot from Jonothan Mandl of the boys, Kam, jack and tim hauling ass


      With a Championship race approaching on the same course, the day was spent encouraging riders to approach the hill and get ready for battle.


      After holding many Outlaw races and slide jams around Sydney and surrounds it was refreshing and almost daunting to turn up to the hill with a bunch of kids waiting with no plan of what to do, so we just skated, the event ran it self, the vibe was relaxed and the riding was real quality. we waited for the road to be cleared and just bombed it, walked back up and did it again. kam and i had marked the apex line for the noobs to follow and with more and more runs they where hauling by the end.


      With close to 60 riders turning up it was a show of how our sport is still growing. im unsure if it was the recent World Cup or the free nature that has drawn kids out of the woodwork to do some fast downhill, ditching the pastel short shorts and rocking the fullface. im stoked, the next gen of Alpha Groms is hungry for faster gnarlier runs and they are ready with style and ease to take em on.





      more blood

      mmmm             mmmm                  

      everyone left with a smile and stoked to have taken on Mt Keira and survived, except for that guy in the middle, he ate shit on the straight and had to go to hospital.

      race day will be interesting when this road barrier becomes a feature
      taking gromie down for a run taking gromie down for a run


      RACE DAY IS ON 30/6

      its gonna be awesome, get your mates together and enter as a team, come and watch, cheer every one along and generally get gnarly at Mt Keira. check ASRA or FB for event deets.

      big thanks to the volunteers and parents that drove the groms out so they could be apart.

      Huge shout out to Fibretec Longboards, Kahalani Trucks, These Wheels, RipTide Bushings, Trojan Gloves and hopkin skate, their support keeps me motivated to hold events and spread the stoke.


      The 3rd Degree wheel review of Volante Morgans

      The 3rd Degree wheel review of Volante Morgans

      fast wearing wheels do feel better to shred, but does that really make them a better wheelFast wearing wheels do feel better to shred, but does that really make them a better wheel

      The 3rd Degree review crew has begun at the Hopshop, we have organized for a new wheel to be filmed and reviewed by a different rider monthly, we hope to show what's new on the market and greater your knowledge of what's out there (and what is in the Hopshop).

      Volante Morgans Wheels

      1st day shred left the wheels already oval, dijon had a mile wide smile after all that testing 1st day shred left the wheels already oval, Dejan had a mile wide smile after all that testing

      beastern suburbs its no surprise that with a hill this steep Dejan cored the wheels, but in under 5 hours total of skating.....

      like an EAGLE!!! like an EAGLE!!!

      The 3rd degree - With Liam Morgan breaking on to the scene a couple of years ago with his massive stand up slides and greasy attitude, he has set the grom world on fire. Now with his own Pro freeride wheel out and signature hair products, the loyal following that has accumulated around the world is sure to treble in size. Volante have released a high quality, fast wearing and predictable wheel. The core shape and lip design allow for amazing transition into and out of slides and ward off any unwanted flatspots by encouraging the wheel to keep spinning. The feeling of destroying thane under your feet and leaving it laid behind you is quintessential to today's freeride scene. The Volante Morgans achieve this and promote going bigger and better with each run through confidence in its release points. But with such high wearing properties will riders be buying a new set each weekend cause they core'd them already? I don't think so. Overall rating for Volante Morgans - 7.65 out of 10.

      laying thane is too much fun. laying thane is too much fun.

      The search continues for the 10 outta 10 wheel with predictable, long lasting, fast freeride features. Next week - Josh Musumeci on the once go-to wheel Metro Motions and myself on the new These 60mm Centresets. -Rob McWhinnie

      The Wild West Outlaw

      The Wild West Outlaw

      The Wild West Out law In the back country, far from Sydney's busy streets and surrounded by dirt roads, bush land and farms, BenBro and Duddy  had found a long sweeping downhill run, starting in butter and ending in chunder. The ideal location for Australia's end of year outlaw to rule all outlaws. Maga has been looking forward to more Aussie races since we got back from the Euro tour mid year, after hitting 3 world cups and mobbing mountain roads like you wouldn't believe, coming home and racing footpaths and alleys just didn't cut it. I've been riding as many different styles as possible lately, moving from board to board, getting out on the my custom DH setup from Fibretec  is always a step up, speed and concentration mixed with thrill and risk. The wild west hill would test you on all accounts and with riders travelling from around the whole country to race, it would only take one slip up to possibly ruin your day. When we left on the race morning, we drove up some nasty back road, 4wd stuff, we pushed on and with a little following the nose we came across the butter smooth tar that only teased you at the top of the run. NACCOS where there setting up hay bales and cleaning the track, we pulled up to find Yates, Kam, Duber and the rest chilling on the final corner, big hugs all round and a quick catch up over a safety  meeting, Maga wanted to check the gnar hairpin that followed the chunder straight, so we walked up and had a closer look at what would be a pinnacle point of the race, Mustard came hauling through the left hander already getting it dialled, the steep straight into the hairpin had a unskateable entire left hand lane, it was full of craters and forced the riders to use only the right lane, the apex was late into the corner too and with exit speed imperative you had to stay wide and chop it like it was your job.


      sector 9 bus captain Bruce de Graf"

      The sector9  bus from the hopshop arrived, piloted by bruiser and stack to the rafters with speed hungry groms shitting their pants after seeing the bigboys course they were about to suit up and race on. You wouldn't  believe it but I've  have never had to race against Maga in a DH, BenBro started the day with a 5 round robin Qualify session that would seed you into a 32man single elim format after lunch, the round robin was a excuses  for practice on the hill but also race practice with other riders, 1st round comes and Maga is suited up and ready to race we barely realise that we are in the same heat and it wouldnt be the last for us racing together on the day.


      high speed style from Maga

      I've got my game face on and so does she, after the push off you pick up speed really fast, its butter smooth and seems to get steeper, the corner drifts left before rallying to the right, you can't see around the corner and grabbing rail your other hand is floating over the inside scrub as you need to keep the line tight, the exit pinches back to the left and after accelerating through the corner you get dragged to the outside edge, trees fly by as you push 80km/h and the g force kicks in as the road comes back up to level, at this moment your fairy tale run ends and a sudden slap in the face with chunder chip seals almost gives you a bleeding nose, you need to hold on and stay in tuck

      Kam killing it out in front"

      The quicker you can maintain across the rough the better chance you have, the road slowly risers up hill and over a right hand crest, the outside lane, the left lane was smooth around here, and even when racing hard you needed to remember it was faster too. i would have a chance now to get worried about maga. did she really make that? id check behind and have a look and SHIT YES there she was,  getting rattled to death on the chunder but still rolling. seeing her mobing hills was enough to stoke me out and calmed me down as i headed into the final section of the run. Shes been progressing well, surprising  me and impressing  others as she's  getting to more and more races and sessioning at  freerides.

      local shredder Caspian hanging out front while dominating Quals"

      After a solid morning session, and a good stack blowing my line around the big left hander and going bush bashing in my leathers, i had qualified equal first with Caspian. Maga Equal 16th with Penny, a solid result and a goal we have been aiming for a while. Making the cut in an OPENs event can be only half the challenge for a aspiring racer, and beating half the field is the way to do it. Benny and his lovely missus and prepared sandwiches  and put on a massive esky of beers, water and supplies, the 32 man tree meant everyone got to race, we had barely any traffic and had plenty of time thanks to JackBro being solid on the books and the sector9 bus running smooth. Dejan flying around the final corner while young rippers chase him down

      i had made it to the semis, bonus round guys, at this point you have raced all day and its only gonna get better, the first heat was all the grommies, Jayden, Dijon, Kelly  and Mail while the second heat was Yates, Kam, Chad  and myself. i was stoked on all the Hopkin boys holding tight and still in it, i wasn't really worried about the outcome and knew what happened  happens, i trusted everyone to not do anything stupid and the fastest rider would take the win, Kam pushed off hard like a mofo, made me wake up a bit, he was hungry hey, i slipped in behind him and we peaced out on the others until the left hander when Yates tried making a move, but when following me in he was was borked by a mad wobble  i got over the inside line and he lost control in the apex, kam was stoked in 1st and had momentum going into the finals,  dijan and kelly made it too,  so the Finals would be a Hopkin Race Team battle with Yates racing for 5th in the consi. BenBro hosted an awesome event, it was a great moment when i saw his face stoking out on all the boys making the finals, even though i knew he wanted to be here with us he was happy to just cheer us on as the bus drove back up the hill one last time. Lining up against your best of mates is one of the great times in DH racing for me, you spend so much time mobing hills with these guys and jaming out on monster runs its hard not to be stoked when we get a whole race hill to our selves. [caption id="attachment_4333" align="aligncenter" width="618" caption="one very tight run with yates and myself"]one very tight run with yates and myself

      I wasnt gonna let Kam beat me off the push this time and dejan has smoked me off the start line before so i had to be ready to attack and take them by surprise. off the push Kam shot off and i had to dig deep to slap the foot down hard and fast, i heard the other guys stop pushing and threw an extra one or two big ones, i had the lead and kam was sniffing my arse, but now i was in the lead i could drive the car, i needed to cover my line and drive it home. as we hit the chunder i felt a small push from kam, i was hoging the smooth lane so he wasnt able to pass, hahahha, we mobed over the crest and now kelly and dejan where both drafting us too, we entered the steep section before the big left hander and dejan came up on kam and gave him a push now kam wasn't going to push me again so he moved up on my outside as we entered the corner, we looked at each other and judged our speed and entry line, i was about to get shafted as he moved in closer so a friendly shove kept us at arm's length,  we dove in faster than ever and it was too tight, we were going to lose traction, but who would lose speed? i had some hectic proto type wheels on ,over  100mm contact patch, 75a with 99a core ( thanks Jacko and old mate at S9 ), i had trusted them to not float off and they didnt disappoint,  Kam kept drifting and i griped up and ripped it, all the way out to the apex and down to the final right sweeper, Dejan and kelly got bucked off and both dislocated their shoulders some how, shit eh. Kam followed us in and the celebrations began before we crossed the line.

      ash maga and alix taking the girls podium.

      Maga won the girls too and had a great time doing so, we havnt been so stoked from a race for a very long time and will remember that weekend for a while yet.

      hopkin race team, Dejan - Rob - Kam and kelly grom

      I'd like to thank BenBro and family, Duds, duber, PC, bruiser, Ryan, jackbro, all of NACCOS and every volunteer that made the event possible also the sponsors that supported the event, Sector9 Australia sent riders down from Qld and forked out $$$ to get Sydney groms to from the race in the event bus. also Otang, Glyde, Oneliner and Hopkin for helping out sponsering the event. and all my personal sponsers especially Fibretec for helping me build a board that i can win races on, Kahalani for trucks when i want to go fast, Riptide Bushings to stay stable and Hopkin Skate for everything else. these are rad days il remember for a long time. all photo credits to Astrid Carey, thank you for donating your time and skill. -Rob.

      IGSA Mt Keira World Cup day one videos

      Here are a few videos from Day one practice session. Simple phone videos with Jacko voice overs. The track was wet, it was slippery. The days results are up on ASRA. Louis Pilloni was the fastest today followed by P Swiss. Best placed Aussie is Ben Hay sitting third. Yatesy is 9th and Cam is 17th. Lea is the top placed woman qualifier and is sitting 56th in the open which damn fine for her first IGSA race! Hopkin Racing team has never been better placed in a world cup event. Adam Yates, Mischo, Dalua and Switzer all cruise past in this practice run. IGSA Mt Keira race Day 1 practice  Steez corner followed by faceplant and Tony Graves inspecting the haybales. IGSA Mt Keira race Day 1 practice with Tony Graves Rob McWhinnie shows us how to crash into the haybales. IGSA Mt Keira race Day 1 practice with Rob McWhinnie  Louis Pilloni shows us the right way to crash into hay bales. IGSA Mt Keira race Day 1 and crashing with Louis Pilloni