One of North America’s the most aggressive, technical, and challenging downhill skateboard races and freerides, The Britannia Classic, will be returning for its 8th year near Squamish, BC Canada. Set in a historic mining community just 40 minutes outside of Vancouver, the Britannia Classic features the world’s top International riders, $5000 cash podium and a welcoming atmosphere for riders, volunteers and fans of all ages. This multi-day event is presented by Subsonic Skateboards and is happening May 22-24, 2015. Skater and volunteer registration will open March 14th on www.britanniaclassic.com and will stay open until it’s full.
The 1.5km (1 mile) track has 3 huge buttery hairpins, 1 double apexing sweeper, a finish that is too hectic to race for a total of 5 corners, over 1000ft of vertical and with gravity fed speeds of 55mph / 90kph. The Britannia Classic welcomes Open, Women, Jr 17U, Jr 13U, Masters 30+ and Luge categories.
Check out last year’s event recap. SEE YOU THERE!
Cozy in the middle of the north island of New Zealand is the wonderful Mt. Ruapehu; one of the destinations on this year’s IDF race schedule. Holding close to the beautiful scenery of the island and the enchantment of a fast and smooth open road, Mt. Ruapehu Gravity Festival enlightened the downhill scene as an event not to miss. And of course, the inner nerd in us all wanted and frothed at the opportunity to shred down one of the mountains of Mordor from the Lord of the Rings. With the freeride already being an annual event, the local scene was ready and buzzing; though this year would include Mt. Ruapehu’s first ever sanctioned race. With news of the IDF getting involved, the competitive fire in everyone ignited. Not only would everyone get to enjoy and skate the mountain with friends, but also get to rage down and compete for top dog of the volcano.
Drawing close to the road on the venture down from Auckland, the mountain welcomed us with dense fog and freezing temperatures.
Early morning of the freeride day rolled in with similar weather conditions. For the first time in months, the mountain hailed some questionable conditions to host a skateboard race, but nonetheless, the event would go on!
Everyone gathered for registration, gear in hand in the early morning cold and fog. Hiding from the weather inside the welcoming café, most racers crowded over hot cocoa, coffee, and breakfast to warm their souls. The organizers ushered in the event with a warm pep talk.
Many brave souls approached the start line in anticipation of the first run. The freeride rolled through with many strong skaters battling the elements, taking runs and enjoying their time on the mountain. The local New Zealand ladies all proved their strength, as no adverse weather conditions would stop them from skating. Wellington local, Grace Wong, Auckland local, Lee Ling, and South Island visitor, Elissa Mah all spent the whole day taking as many runs as they could. The conditions only worsened as the day rolled on. The rain overcame the mountain with more ferocity to the point where runs ceased and the event stopped for the day. A few hours after the day’s activities, the sun finally showed up, livening up the weather. Many skaters took this as the opportunity to gather in some dry bonus runs before the sunset. Making sure to use this one chance, everyone took it easy, staying within their lane and enjoying the, now open road all the way to the bottom. Once the sun set, everyone dwindled back to their cabins and hotels to sleep.
The next day rolled in with solace as the weather seemed even worse than the day prior. The temperature set in colder, the rain poured down harder, and the fog continued to embrace the mountain in a thick cloud. Being the first day of the race, and the day devoted to practice runs and time trials, skaters decided to adorn their leathers and embrace the mountain with ferocity. Everyone took all the runs they could during the inclement weather, hoping for the sun to eventually make an appearance. Rain roared into hail and the fog thickened, but the sun finally came out to let in a couple dry runs before the days end. Hope of a dry race day filled everyone until, late into the night, the rain and hail thundered down the hardest of the whole weekend.
The morning of race day approached the mountain with no sign of sun. The weather roared down offering interesting conditions for the racing to come. A solid continuation of rain, fog, and cold echoed in the air reminding everyone of the previous days. Hustle and bustle was on everyone’s agenda to get things going before the weather could worsen.
The day started with a couple of practice runs to warm up. Open heats immediately followed and rolled through to lunch. The sun teased us through the clouds, only to finally make a guest appearance. Thanks to convincing words and all the skaters secret desires, the organizers decided a long lunch could be taken to allow the road to dry up before final racing. Juniors charged off the line in their final as the opens dwindled down to quarters and semis. The ladies raged down for a couple fun runs before the final race heat. Alongside the open semi’s, the ladies roared down for their final, offering gnarly racing to all the spectators. The open final soon followed with intensity, as the racing was super close. What a pleasure it was to race the road in the dry sunshine to finish off the event. And what a gnarly final to witness. The guys all railed each corner with intensity, crossing the finish line neck to neck.
1st- Connor Ferguson
2nd- Byron Essert
3rd- Tony Graves
4th- James Kelly
1st- Rachel Bagels Bruskoff
2nd- Elissa Mah
3rd- Maga McWhinnie
4th- Lee Ling
5th- Grace Wong
1st- Tyron Knight
2nd- Jack Tumai
3rd- Jayden Howarth
Thank you to everyone who helped make this event a wonderfulexperience!
Promoting gender equality through surfing!
In celebration of May as Women’s International Surfing Month and recognition of the unique positive impact surfing and the ocean can give to women and girls, a special part of the Surf + Social Good Summit is our Girls Make Waves Action Day. Dedicating a full day of the three-day Summit to celebrating the achievements and addressing the challenges for surf as a force for women and girls globally, we will mix speaker series, workshops and surf lessons to embolden our call for action and pave the path ahead.
This special event focuses on how access to and the experience of surfing can promote self-empowerment for women and girls.
The Girls Make Waves Action Day Will:
Create Communities of practice:
• Engage with female surfers from countries where social development for women is of significant need promote social good causes.
• Bring together organisations and the women and girls they hope to benefit to build an integrated, digital storytelling platform with an online mentoring program
Identify key insights and priorities
• Inform an innovative research agenda for gender, surf and development initiatives, so that ultimately more girls and women will be able to benefit from surfing
Launch Pilot Programs
• Girls from developing countries positioned as “surf for social good” ambassadors upon returning to their home communities
• Key program in Papua New Guinea, Pink Nose Surf, launched targeting female empowerment via surf
Next Step in “Sport for Gender Equality”
Sport has demonstrated its transformative power in addressing social challenges, particularly toward advancing gender equality. Organizations from the United Nations, USAID, DFID, and more have propelled it as a major tool in international gender empowerment. Surfing is the next wave in this movement- harnessing the power of the natural resource of water, surfing unifies individuals and overcomes barriers. The Summit aims to collate examples of best practices and surfing’s successes as a tool for social good and set priorities for its continued progress.
Collective Vision of the Summit Leadership
The five organizations hosting the Summit, Waves of Freedom, A Liquid Future, Beyond Surface the International, Little Seeds Surf Coaching, and Salt Gypsy are all social enterprises founded and managed by women. As the driving force for the Summit, these women are personal and professional advocates of the empowerment of women and girls; they came together from far corners of the world realizing common challenges and a common platform for a solution: surfing.
Mixed Model Agenda
An action-packed day will mix speaker series, interactive workshops and surf lessons using specialized learning model for women and girls.
• Create a safe space to engage and connect participants and prioritize challenges and opportunities
• Key topics include gender identity and the portrayal of female surfers in the media, women’s surfing history, surfing as a vehicle for marine education
• Guest talks from professional and everyday surfers, sharing their experiences across cultures, showcasing personal journeys and gender-specific challenges
• Speakers such as Ishita Malaviya, India’s first woman of surf and Cori Schumacher, world longboard champion and women’s rights activist from the USA, Dr. Easkey Britton, the first woman to surf in Iran
Surf Lessons and Skills Development
• Introducing an experiential and active learning process that encourages participants, integrating leadership and team-building skills and exercises
• Practical surfboard and equipment repair demonstrations
Support of this Movement
In addition to participants in the Summit as a whole, a unique focus for the Action Day is to facilitate the participation of female surfers from countries where social development for women is of significant need. In order to support the participation of local female surfers and participants from developing nations we are seeking funding for travel bursaries/grants. Our goal is to support 8 girls to attend from the Middle East and Asia-Pacific regions. We have located these girls through our partner organizations’ programs in their countries. We anticipate the average cost per girl for one day of attendance (including travel, accommodation, food, and surf equipment) would be US$2,000.
Surfing holds an incredible potential for girls and women to spark social change from our unique and diverse social and geographical locations.
For more info and inscriptions please click here
Our Co-Founder & Managing Director Valeria Kechichian was invited by Women in Board & Action Sports (WIB) to give a conference during the Annual WIB Luncheon during ISPO Munich, one of the biggest Action Sports Trade Shows in the world.
The theme of the Conference was “And Now?” referring to the crash in the Action Sports Industry and where we should head to. Please take some minutes to check this out:
Valeria talks about LGC, why and how she supports and promotes Women in Action Sports, the shift the Industry and society must do in order to achieve real happiness and providing healthy role models to society.
These are some of the best quotes of the speech:
“Greatness is on the way you do things, greatness is on how much love you put on things. By greatness I mean doing things that are bigger than us, things that will influence positively in other people. Greatness can go from fighting human trafficking to supporting any kind of charity to raising your children surrounded with love and teach them about actions and consequences and respect. THAT is greatness… Doing things that influence other people positively, being the best you can be so that that people can be the best they can be, inspire other people to be their best by you being the best you can be”
“Cause greatness comes to the thinkers and the changers, greatness comes to the people that are not afraid to fight, to fight hard and to work harder, even if that means fighting alone”
“Sometimes they will make you doubt in what you believe and the work you do, but as said if you’re really working for a greater good, things will work out. Just keep working hard”
“As women in the boardsport industry we have the responsibility to be that change we want to see”
“We have the responsibility to create real role models, not airbrushed models we see on magazines. Those people are not real and we all know how influential is if we find a role model.. the impact this have on us so let’s become the role models we want to see. We don’t have to be public figures just good moms, god co-workers we have to vibrate in love”
“To all the companies, support the female athletes. Choose the smart, choose the talented, and not the pretty”
“Cause if we depend on what mainstream role models are giving to us, we’re completely fucked and we know it”
“Let’s work on change cause I believe we can do this. We have so much potential inside us, all of us, so much potential. Be the change you want to see”
The main is message: BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE
Come on friends, let’s keep working for change!
It’s time for POLAND! We proudly announce that during Longboard Tradeshow Woods&Wheels longboard market on April 18th the Polish “OPEN” -by Daniel Etura- premiere will take a place in FORUM Przestrzenie at 7pm.
LGC Poland ambassador Laura Godek along with Łukasz Grzywacz & Ola from LUCA longboards put together an amazing day full of fun stuff including a longboard dance contest, hippie jump and girls clinics!
Valeria Kechichian -OPEN rider and LGC Director- will be their special guest for the day events and during the screening. Stoked!
The event is FREE and all participants can take a part in the longboard lottery we’re having. Who’s coming?!BIG thanks to the premiere sponsors longboardshop.pl & LYOFOOD for their awesomeness! Please check them out and follow them on their Facebook fan pages: https://www.facebook.com/
LongBoardShop & https://www.facebook.com/ LYOEXPEDITIONSEE YOU THERE!