My short report and first impressions on Grüningen

Slalom Skateboarding in Switzerland

Moderator: Ramón Königshausen

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Chris Eggers
Posts: 504
Joined: Mon Sep 09, 2002 2:00 am
Location: Germany

Post by Chris Eggers » Mon Jun 23, 2003 2:41 pm

Had fun and a sunburn. My car looks like after a heavy bombing and my bones ache. I have memories of racing Jani and getting beat in the Tight by 1/100th with both of us having clean runs. My best head to head run ever.
I remember getting distracted by the bikini wearing girls on their blankets next to the road and giving autographs to children. Camped out on the race site in the field under a clear sky. Beautiful.

The race lacked a bit (or a bit more) in organisation, but we have to remember it is a big effort to organize a race and I am sure Jadranko and his peers will improve. We should help them as much as possible.

So far I had a lot of fun and it was good to see many many new faces. Thanks, one to remember. Chris

Frederic Reveillard
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2003 2:00 am
Location: France

Post by Frederic Reveillard » Mon Jun 23, 2003 7:47 pm

many things to say but before,can you tell us how many slalomers accepted to run in the "pro"class,please?


Jani Soderhall
ISSA President 2011-2020
ISSA President 2011-2020
Posts: 4113
Joined: Thu Aug 22, 2002 2:00 am
Location: Sweden, lives in France

Post by Jani Soderhall » Mon Jun 23, 2003 8:38 pm

After a 900 km drive and a 3.5 hour-only night I woke up this morning against my own will: The French tax inspector was expecting me in the office... We can't we just keep racing? Is there really a need to work?

After being part of the organizing committee of the Paris World Cup 2003 a month ago I could enjoy this race as a spectator and participant. No obligations, just the fun part: watching, taking pictures, chatting, racing, sweating and just hanging around.

Back in the 80's and 90's I used to come to races carrying one board, sometimes a spare board and one spare truck. To make sure I had the right wheels I'd bring two or four extra wheels. This time I brought 4 complete boards and a whole artillery of wheels (probably 2-4 of every available 3dm wheel and a few others) - just in case. And I wasn't even going to race! I hadn't stood on a board during the last month and on Friday I still had a running nose, so racing was no longer on the agenda. How wrong I was!

Arriving at the race site, and seeing the energy that was being unleased, I just couldn't resist the temptation to join the crowd that was warming up and trying out the tight slalom courses.

The Pro course was so tight that plenty of the Pros didn't want to enter Pro so they we're signing up for the amateur course instead. I was a bit surprised as I'm now trying to get used to wider courses and all of a sudden somebody has put up a classic tight course. That quickly eliminated three of my four boards. Luckily I still had my S-Camber ready to take on a tight slalom challenge. With the S-Camber the Pro course felt easy, but to get through the course I really had to wiggle my body, and especially work my arms at a rate I'm no longer used to. Also, it didn't help crashing into the cone judge in my first practise run. I will know after an X-ray tomorrow if it was the racing or the crash that made my arm unmoveable on Sunday morning. There was no way I could enter the giant slalom race with that arm, but I didn't have to. I was sooo pleased to just sit on the side and enjoy the show. I already had my 2:nd place. If Luca is in the race, getting second is winning. Luca doesn't count.

I was pleased to see so many talented amateurs, boys and girls. Very promising. That was maybe the best thing about racing in Switzerland. That country is loaded with slalom racers!

Nice to see also that the level was quite even in the junior and girl classes, regardless of age differences, which made for really exciting semifinals and finals in these categories.

It'll be interesting to see some combined results from this race. (Corky, please compile some once you have the details).

Consider this short resumé:

Plenty of gold, silver and bronze medals. Too many to be counted.

Two racers only, two 1st places. Francesco Ugolini didn't make it to the podium but probably had the fastest tight slalom race of the day. He'll be back, be worried!

Two amateur gold medals, maybe a silver and/or bronze.

Paul Price defended the UK colors with a third place finishing. But watch out there's a whole crowd of them just outside of the podium: Ed, Léon, Michael, Jim, David and others. Michael Stride took a fall that made him look like superman flying after - and into - Paul Price. Paul just kept skating as if nothing happened.

Lauren and Dylan Gordon made sure that the US got their medals in the girls and junior classes. Richie Carrasco didn't make it to the podium in the pro races, but wasn't far away. He had to meet Luca early on in the tight, what could he do?

Welcome back! This was Latvias return to the slalom scene after 8 years of abscence. Expect them to climb in the ranks quickly. They travelled home with at least a silver and a bronze, maybe more.

Present with several skaters in both Am and Pro but no real top finishers this time.

Two racers only, but Corky confirmed he's one of the top amateurs on giant slalom with a third place and I got my 2:nd place in tight.

I'd better stop here. Maybe you don't want to read such long posts...

Thank's to Jadranko and all the staff for an excting race weekend!

Vlad Popov
Posts: 1543
Joined: Wed Aug 28, 2002 2:00 am
Location: Moscow, Russia

Post by Vlad Popov » Tue Jun 24, 2003 12:14 am

Congratulations to all podium finishers except Luca.

TS that calls for TS boards and wheels?

Gilmour, if they have this race next year, let’s get cheap(er) tickets in advance (they were $450 a couple of months ago).

Chris Eggers
Posts: 504
Joined: Mon Sep 09, 2002 2:00 am
Location: Germany

Post by Chris Eggers » Tue Jun 24, 2003 8:55 am

I promised a tight course, so it was one, Vlad. I looked down the road several times during the day, but you did not show up. This one was just for you. Shame on you. Next time I hope.


Hans Koraeus
Corky - World Ranking Master Mind
Corky - World Ranking Master Mind
Posts: 1895
Joined: Fri Aug 23, 2002 2:00 am
Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Post by Hans Koraeus » Tue Jun 24, 2003 1:42 pm

Major impression from the race was...

- Too hot! As a Swede I like sunny and warm weather but this was too much for me.

- Again lot's of Am racers. With all these young racers it looks promising for the European slalom future.

- A really tight special slalom for the Pro's. A tuff course that unfortunatly made some very good racers to choose the Am course instead.

- Again some new faces from old times. The Latvian team with Gints and Armands was back. So was and Italian old timer Francesco Ugolini that was one of the best in the early 80's. For next year I think we definitely can say that the European skate slalom scene is alive & well again.

- The start invention by Chris Hart for the duels. A rubberband attached on one side and stretched out and hold by a person on the other side, just in front of the two racers at the start ramps. The starter then says "Five second warning" and should let go of the rubberband within 5 seconds. The idea was fun but didn't work in the sense that false starts was not "alarmed" and penalized.

- Luca again took the first places but I got the feeling that the pack had closed in somewhat on him. But as Jani mentioned it's almost like a competition of who will be first AFTER Luca.

- Daniel Ridoli showed up but without skateboard. His advice for beating Luca is... the gym. So for you that have a goal higher then being first AFTER Luca it's time to go pumping those legs.

- Jani's amazing journey through the head to head in special slalom. It started with a win by only a 10:th of a second against Chris Eggers in the first round. It continued like that all the way until the final. You never knew if he had made it or not. In the first final run against Luca they where leveled after 3/4 of the course when Jani turned out of the course. According to himself because it was going so fast that he started to loose control of his board and he didn't want to risk any more falls after his cone judge incident. But with rumours of sandbagging before who knows the reason for sure. Sure was that after this the first place was already in the hands of Luca and Jani didn't mind. He was happy enough with second and did a "Sunday walk" in the last run.

- Thanks to the organizers for pulling it together. One could see that a lot of work had got into it. And though there where things that didn't always worked out as they had hoped, that are lessons to learn from. Not reasons for not doing it again. Thanks again and count me in for next year.

Howard Gordon
1953-2010 (RIP)
1953-2010 (RIP)
Posts: 141
Joined: Thu Aug 22, 2002 2:00 am
Location: San Luis Obispo

Post by Howard Gordon » Wed Jun 25, 2003 3:30 pm

Chris -

Though there was some chaos in the first day of racing related to cone count, DQ monitoring, time recording, and availability of posted times for the racers, the organizers took criticism quite well, and demonstrated a BIG improvement on the second day.

For us, it was a great experience. We were really pleased to see the breadth of talent in the junior and womens classes, with Lauren and Dylan having the time of their lives - they really did not want to leave, and kept asking when they would be able to race again in Europe.

On the commercial side, it was nice to be able to meet some of our 3dm wheel customers, and definitely a highlight for me was to see Luca retire his old wheels and switch to Cambrias.

The weather was pretty amazing - shopkeepers told us on Monday that these were the highest recorded temperatures in 165 years ! We were very grateful for the outdoor sprinkler at the fire station, and give the organizers applause for such good planning in that regard. Also, it was very nice to have hot food, lots of drinks, special energy drinks at no cost for the racers.

And last but not least, it was very special to have the chance to get to know Luca and watch him skate. Luca gave Dylan a lot of encouragement about the level of his skating skill, and this is something that will not be easily forgotten.

Lauren Gordon
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Dec 15, 2002 1:00 am
Location: San Luis Obispo, CA

Post by Lauren Gordon » Wed Jun 25, 2003 6:13 pm

Being this was my first time in Switzerland and even skating in Europe, I definetly had the time of my life. The Europeans were very friendly, and I will probably be keeping in touch them for a long time! I'm really looking forward to next years race hoping that they will put the Paris and Switzerland races closer together, so we can visit both. Although the first day's organization was a little shaky, it all ended really well with many people wanting to come back.
I want to thank everyone for the great motivation and encouragement that kept me going. And I hope to see you all next year!

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