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Stu Thomsen vs. Greg Hill

Stu Thomsen, Greg Hill and other race heros from the 80s.

Looks like Mark Eaton of Bang! Pictures and of course the “Dorkin in York” series of videos, is at it again. Following-up on the BMX documentary, “Joe Kid on a Stingray”, Eaton is releasing “Stompin’ Stu, the Story of BMX Legend, Stu Thomsen”. Looks like it will be similar in style to Joe Kid, with filmed interviews, vintage film/video footage, as well as still photos.

I forgot that Stu’s wife is Greg Hill’s sister. But hearing that in the trailer, I was reminded of how much the magazines used to push their rivalry back-in-the-day.

I love to see BMX remembering and celebrating its roots. For too long, we’ve only focused on the new and now. Every day that continues to change. Good stuff.

Check out the trailer here.

Discuss over at the BMXMuseum.

Found on ESPN, posted by Brian Tunney.

We’re only a few weeks from the wrap-up of the Beijing Olympics, and the London 2012 organizers have released the plans and the above video for the “VeloPark”, which includes an indoor velodrome and outdoor BMX track. As this is one of the premier permanent facilities for the 2012 Games, it will remain a part of the London cycling scene, and an additional 1-mile road cycling path and MTB course will be added after the games. Read more about it over on the BBC.

I know this is for the Olympics and all, which means big plans and a big outlay of cash (though not to the extent of the Beijing games, I’ve read) but it would be great to see more multi-use bicycle facilities in the US. With the popularity of track/fixed/single-speed bikes, it would seem that there is a market for more velodromes, and BMX tracks and skateparks should just go hand-in-hand.

Related:
2008 Olympics BMX coverage on BMXRoots.com

Download Donny Robinson, US Olympian and Silver Medal Winner

Well, even after the semi-finals were rained out, and thus, not televised as planned, the BMX events in the Olympics put on a solid 45-second (per race) show. Jill Kintner, Mike Day and Donny Robinson all medaled for the United States with bronze, silver, bronze, respectively. Maris Strombergs of Latvia won the men’s gold, and two French riders, Anne-Caroline Chausson and Laetitia le Corguille took the gold and silver.

Stuart over at DHADM sent me a couple of videos in the build-up to the BMX racing events in the Olympics. One from the Seattle program, Evening Magazine, and another from MSNBC. The video from MSNBC, above, features some more behind-the-scenes of the track, and an interview with racer, Donny Robinson.

Interesting that the host on Evening Magazine, John Curley, mentions that if you haven’t heard of “BMX Motocross” before, you’re not alone. Strange, because I know that BMX has always had a good footprint in the Pacific Northwest, and, well, it has been around for what, 30-plus years? Public perception of BMX never surprises.

Download Evening Magazine BMX Feature, featuring some solid Washington racers

If you didn’t get a chance to see the Olympic medal rounds on tv, you can check them out here

Oh, and George over on Kranky found some great photos (via We Mine Deeper) of the Olympic BMX races, shot by a non-bmx photographer. Cool stuff.

On the heels of this, I’ve dug through my archives, and I have something pretty special planned starting Monday – it will be Bob Haro week at BMXRoots. Check back for some stuff many of you may have never seen.

Minnesota Faction BMX Olympic Watch Party

The BMX competition in the Olympics is only three days away, and with that, there are some lively discussions popping up all over. Since most of my time has been on the freestyle/non-racing side of BMX, I’m focusing on this side of the fence. There are plenty of other places to get the BMX racing contingent’s thoughts on the Olympics, and a quick search will get you there pretty quickly.

First, Phil at Super Rat Machine is giving you a shot at winning a set of Super Rat Prototype pedals as one of his Friday Freebies, for answering these questions in the comments of his site:
Since this is the first year of bmx in the olympics and since it will essentially expose millions of people to bmx racing what are the pros and cons of the event as you see it? and do you think it will affect your daily interaction with joe public? and to go along with that do you think any other form of bmx will make it into the olympics?
Post your answer here by Friday, August 22nd, for a chance to win a set of sweet not-even-yet-released pedals.

Over on the RideBMX site, there’s an interesting bunch of quotes from BMX-industry folks and riders. Mat Hofman’s response and comments (taken from another interview in a German newspaper), have sparked quite a bit of discussion. Rad to see the infamous McGoo throwing some thoughts, as well.

(Note that I’m not the Jeremy commenting on the Ride site, it is me on the Super Rat site, however, for what its worth…)

On a lighter note, I encourage you to take a cue from the Minnesota Faction BMX crew, and get some other riders together and watch the racing. If you’re in Minneapolis, join them. What better reason to ride, drink and eat – in whatever order you prefer? Thanks to Paul Smith for the heads-up.

Super Rat Pedals
Corked pedals…not pedals made from cork. A Super Rat Friday Freebie.


BMX Starting hill at the USA Olympics practice facility in California
THAT, my friends is a starting hill… Photo Credit: Casey Gibson/USACycling.org

As I type this, the opening ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics are underway. Controversy aside, it is pretty amazing to see BMX recognized as an Olympic sport. Thanks to the good folks at the OS-BMX Forums, here are the broadcast schedules for the Olympic BMX coverage on NBC, here in the United States. If you’re a night-owl, you can watch some of this live online at nbcolympics.com

August 20, 2008 – 12:30am – 2:00am EST
Late night (LIVE) BMX cycling, featuring men’s quarterfinal races.

August 20, 2008 – 8:00pm – 12:00am EST
Prime time (LIVE) cycling’s BMX finals.

August 21, 2008 – 2:00am – 5:00am EST
Prime time Replay BMX finals.

Wanna know more about the bmx athletes? Check these links:
jillkintner.com – Personal site of the sole female USA rider and all-around badass cyclist
USA Olympics Cycling Team
Redline’s Global Olympic Team Page
Mike Day (Olympic rider) on EXPN.com

Uhh…

Related:
Nike USA Olympic Uniforms

Nike Olympic BMX Uniforms

My friend, Andy, (thanks, man) sent me a great link to the Nike Lab, a series of interviews with their designers, and there are a couple with John Martin, who led the Nike/Freestylin’ collaboration and is leading up their Olympic BMX effort. As most of you know, the 2008 Olympics in China will feature BMX (in the form of racing) for the first time in the Olympic games.

Hit these links to check out the uniforms and the shoes they’ve designed for the riders. Interesting to see the inspiration from the early Haro Designs uniforms and hear about their design process.

Fiat 500 vs. BMX Riders in Budapest

Top Gear is my absolute, all-time favorite television show about cars, and a few months back, BBC America finally began running it here in the States. Last week’s UK episode featured riders Sebastian Keep and Ben Shenker racing one of the hosts, James May, through Budapest in a Fiat 500 retromobile. The way Top Gear shoots cars is always so well done, and they apply the same techniques to the riding here as well. Sebastian and Ben pull out some bangers along the way in unexpected places – some of which were obviously staged, but rad nonetheless.

Check it out at RideBMX UK (via defgrip).

BMXROOTS

In 1986, I took my first swipe at becoming a bmx publisher. It was the early days of the ‘zine, and I made one of my own, called Motion. At that point, I also had a loose association of bmx and skateboard friends called the Motion Trick Team. We mostly drew logos on our notebooks and talked about what our shows would be like – drawing schematics of the ramps, p.a. setup and music choices. We rode for ourselves, mostly, but man, it was fun to work all of this out. Someday, we hoped, we’d get the gear and make it happen.

Back to the ‘zine: It was pre-computer (at least in my house), so I used a typewriter, the school photocopier, and my 110 Instamatic – I was loaded for bear. I put out 3-4 issues every 6 months or so, getting friends to help produce it, upgrading to an early Mac for typesetting and improving my hand-lettering and illustration, as well as shooting with a 35mm camera. Still, the content mostly covered my friends and our little scene in a suburb of Kansas City. I’ve got plenty of fodder for this site, which I’ll be scanning and uploading over time – trust me, you gotta see some of this stuff.

I kept riding throughout high school and into the beginning of college. I kept shooting photos and learning of this profession called graphic design. I went to school for advertising and photography at first, then switched over to visual communications (design), and as I began working, I stopped riding. My old Haro was in pieces and I found excuses not to ride. Too busy, too lazy, too old, whatever. Hell, I even bought a mountain bike thinking that I would be able to enjoy myself on that – however, when I rode, I missed something. I missed the feelings of throwing the “little bike” around, launching off curbs, and pedaling until you’ve got no more gears.

Last year, I bought my oldest son a Hoffman 16″ bmx for his 4th birthday. And thus it began… Though I had been following the bmx scene via the web, tv coverage and the occasional magazine, I decided that there was no way that I could ride a mountain bike while my oldest was learning on such a cool bike. With the encouragement of my wife (who still doesn’t quite understand what all the fuss is over beat-up parts – “but they’re vintage, honey“), I bought a 24″ Haro cruiser, then a 20″ Haro Retro Sport, and began putting my ’87 Master back together. Buying parts for the Master led me to many sites (bmxmuseum, vintagebmx, os-bmx) and I was amazed to see this community of people building, saving, riding, and racing these “little bikes”. However, I shouldn’t have been surprised. See, there are kids jumping on bmx bikes everyday – more than in years past, even, and there are guys my age and above who never stopped riding.

I became inspired by bmx again, at least that was the simple way to look at it. Yeah, I’m riding a lot more now, and I’ve got a few bikes that I’m restoring, but really, I had been inspired all along. My job is as a creative director for an ad agency, and it was under the influence of Freestylin’ Magazine, BMX Action, and BMX Plus! that I began my design career, and now, I want to bring those influences to the pages of this site. It will be current, yet reflective, and always feature stories that provide a peek behind the curtain – of riders, spots, shops, etc. I want anyone who stumbles on here to add to the stories, and provide ideas for more. I want to inspire others to create, no matter how their creations take shape.

-Jeremy