To get people together you need to find a good excuse. Paul and I have been into BMX for 25 years now and that was enough of an excuse to get together for the Flat Battle and a Street Ride in Eindhoven.
Saturday March 6th was picked for the occasion. With a party in De Effenaar lined up at night at least something would happen (the party). We had to depend on the weather for the outdoor activities. The street ride didn't take off until 17:00hrs. Peter van de Riet from South-Africa (currently living in Eindhoven) was willing to show the Dutch street riding scene the spots that DownTown Eindhoven had to offer.
From the meeting point at the Stadhuisplein where a miniramp and some street spots were set up, we moved 10 seconds East to the first grindable arch. Peter showed how to do it and left it open for others to try out the obstacle. Manuals, feebles and a curved wallride attempt followed.
3 seconds further East (same spot actually) had a couple of ledges and some stairs just high enough to manual onto and drop-off of. The Zeeland posse was in da hizouse. Vladdie has turned into the manual-180 king and Mark Vos has become so good it's ridiculous. 180 barspin down the stairs from Fox, manual to wallride from Souf and 180-X-up drops from Peter were some of the moves at spot number 2.
The rebel-ish street ride never really took off like it did in Paris a few years ago. It was more of a relaxed cruise with 30 BMX-ers from spot to spot. Next up was a ledge at a parking garage. Fairly high to hop on to but slippery and slidey once you were on. Rik, Pete, Souf, Bas and Caine all gave it their shot.
With camera's around to film and some extra tries for a couple of guys, part of the group could not wait and took off, including our guide Peter. People followed people who did know where to go and had lost the South-African as well. Good thing most of us own mobile phones and within minutes the street riding crew was complete and had met up at the Rabobank.
For some reason Rabobank facilities always seem to have something rideable around. The Eindhoven bank had 4; a pyramid (wallrides), a rather steep handrail (grinds), ledges for manual options and a bar that closed a road (bunnyhop-180's-ice-picks etc.). Mark, Peter and Barry Kohne got to work while Vladdie bunny hopped to manual the complete ledge. Highlight at this spot definitely was Mark Vos' icepick grind down the rail. It was definitely sick.
As it slowly started to get dark (and the party was waiting), a kinked handrail near the Central Railway Station needed to be abused. It didn't take Mark long to hop over to grind the rail. A'dam locals Caine and Barry joined this party. Barry ended up grinding the flat part to ice-pick down the second kinked part which was awesome.
All of a sudden Rik started pedaling towards the grass bank full speed to make it to the rail from the side. Plenty of peg stall attempts failed until a few creative members of the street posse found large planks to cover up the soft grass. Rik, Barry and Souf sessioned the newly created spot for a while and Mark jumped the rail to flat bank.
The session wasn't over yet. A slippery bank next to the kinked rail served as a jump and more people joined the jumping session before Paul and I could unload our Eastpak backpacks with prizes we had been lugging around.
5th place went to our Tour Guide Peter van de Riet who had home advantage but showed he can definitely shred. Thanks for all Peter. 4th place went to Souf who had something to offer at every spot. Barry Kohne scored a third place prize package from one of the sponsors (Snafu / HARO / FlyBikes / Eastpak / Paul's Boutique / EBC). The Zeeland crew ripped it up during the street ride. Vladdie got 2nd place and Mark Vos deservedly won.
Whatever the excuse might be next time, get together and ride.