Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Vanier Park Dirt Jumps

Well, the dirt jumps are finally approved. Hopefully we'll be jumping by next summer. Chris wrote up a short something for Vancouver is Awesome that summarizes it.

Getting involved with this approval process was a new one for me. There's people out there with a lot of dedication...baffling amounts of dedication. I have a lot of respect for that. I have a hard time keeping my interest level high for such a long period of time.

As well, I have a solid respect for the Park Board of this city. There were a lot of interesting questions asked and a willingness to move forward on something that I didn't think they would be up for. It gives me a bit of hope that perhaps there are politicians out there willing to listen to what people actually want. Yes. I know. It's only the Park Board. But it's a start. Incidentally, I think we're lucky to have the Park Board that we have.

So now the design and construction process begins. There's already people climbing out of the woodwork to have their input (what is Vancouver's Bicycle Advisory Committee?). And they're calling it a "Skills Park", not a "Dirt Jump Park". So hopefully we can all keep our focus on the dirt jumps and get this built right.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Worlds Coverage

It's been interesting to catch coverage of the World Championships down in Canberra, Australia. There's been a bit of bitching that the course is too pedally and not technical enough. But I think the course gives it a good "made for TV" sort of vibe to it. Charging down a steep rooty pitch looks exciting when you know how difficult it is, but is probably too slow for the average person. But everybody can understand hauling ass between giant rocks while boosting off huge jumps. I like it.

Anyhow, there's been a bit of a Steve Peat love in leading up to this years race. If you have a few minutes, please check out the Freecaster coverage (via NSMB). Watch Lopes run off the top. Steve Smith at 57:50. May as well watch Kovarik after him. Barel at looks crazy on his tiny bike with no pads at 121:50 and puts on a display of unbridled, small bike handling madness. Mick Hannah at 1:30:45.

Then Forward to Steve Peat at 1:36:49.

Honestly, the run is great, but the announcing...honestly. Greatest announcing in the history of the world, ever. I think it's Rob Warner, but I'm not 100% sure. It has to be heard to be believed. Go check it out.

You may as well hang on for Sam Hill right after. Then Greg Minnaar. Then watch Gee Atherton just for the reaction to Steve finally winning. Ooops. Spoiler.

Oh man. That's just so crazy. One of the greatest things I've ever watched. This is what is great about mountain biking.