Let's make it tighter

Cones and Placement

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Brady Mitchell
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Post by Brady Mitchell » Mon Sep 08, 2003 1:07 pm

Adam,
I would gladly help in any way towards a series on the east coast as I`m sure the others mentioned would as well.

I wouldn`t even mind including a standard set of rules such as the ISSA`s.

But I, "ME", personally would do so AFTER the RULES section is updated.

I feel that race organizers should have the course setting rights and it should not be up to 3 people picked from some lottery, as long as it`s within the predetermined specs of the ruling body...(ISSA?)

I also feel the section that speaks of the "Worlds" being held every other year and all that talk about the "Euro" comp needs a major overhaul. I mean, is there supposed to be a euro comp and a US comp seeding into the "Worlds"? Isn`t all of europe like less the size of all the U.S.?

If the ISSA wants to be a true "Worlds" governing body, they should let the "Euros" have thier own sanctioning body so as to have no lop-sided representation.

And maybe we ought to give the USSSA a chance at governing our slalom races.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Brady Mitchell on 2003-09-08 07:17 ]</font>

Vlad Popov
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Post by Vlad Popov » Mon Sep 08, 2003 5:02 pm

If there's "Brady East Coast Slalom Series" next year, I will participate in every single round no matter how loose or tight the courses are. One condition, though. Brady sets the rules and the courses.


Brady rules!

Thanks.

John Gilmour
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Post by John Gilmour » Mon Sep 08, 2003 6:11 pm

Maybe we should always let the promoters set the courses. If the promoter feels we should have a ten cone tight slalom and wants to put up $100,000 who are we to stop him.

If the promoter feels we should run slalom on cobblestone or in a space the size of a basketball court and wants to put up the prize money- that is the promoters preogative.

Let's be real here. Would you want the Promoter of a Formula One race that has never raced Formula One before design a track without input from other racers? You want CURRENT input from the racers. You want input from racers who are near the top now- not ones that set courses in the past or newbies that might set a great course in the future.

ISSA made that lottery draw thing a rule for the reason that many promoters in the past had no idea as to how to set a good slalom course for the levels they represent. They had no idea about runouts, surface quality, ramp size- how far apart the courses should be etc.- Hill speed and how it acculmulates for newbies vs pros - the type of offsets that are negiotiatable at high speed etc.

Also it wasn't always possible to have the same guys travel around and set courses- and it could get a bit stale that way. Drawing from the list of Pro competitors seemed to make the most sense- at least they were physically there. At times this process can fail- but overall it is probably a good idea.
A pre-published course is also a good idea.

ISSA Racers demanded rules that made for better racing...this was one of the rules they voted for. The racers raced. They knew from experience. They wanted other racers that came after them to BENEFIT from the mistakes they ENDURED from well intentioned promoters who did not know the effects of certain rule changes and the like.

In regards to Europe having its own body. It could be said that since the bulk of the racers in ISSA were European that it was the defacto Governing body of Europe. It also could be said since it was the Last working large organization that it was the defacto world governing body.

I see things working somewhat regionally.

West Coast Series, East Coast Series, Non Coast series. That = USA Series.

French Series (they have funding), German Series (they may have enough racers), Former Iron Curtain series (currency strengths restrict much travel), Swiss Series. That = Europe Series. Jani has a much better feel on this I am sure.

World Series race travels to one of the Major regions. Usually to a promoter who held one of the National Majors. Annually or Bianually?

For now the only places to likely be able to handle a world Series are France and the USA.

Vlad Popov
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Post by Vlad Popov » Mon Sep 08, 2003 7:07 pm

Down with all that Slalom Utopia stuff! Let’s get real! The Brady Slalom World Series! Accept no substitutes!

Brady Mitchell
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Post by Brady Mitchell » Mon Sep 08, 2003 7:50 pm

Thanks for the promoting Vlad. What`s the old addage? "No such thing as bad publicity"?

Seriously though, I have no ambitions of holding a World class event at this time. And if I were to have any part as a slalom race promoter, I`d probably leave the course setting up to others...GBJ, Brian Parsons, etc...

My point in regards is that it SHOULDN`T always be mandatory that 3 odd balls get picked. Think about it, you (Vlad) go through the effort and expense of hosting a race and pick me (Brady) as a course setter.

And JG, as for as the ISSA and the wording of europe contests while totally ignoring the USA is exactly my point, Rules are made so there are no what if`s, could be`s, maybe they meant,,,yadda, yadda, yadda......

Just because ir worked for some in the past (not all) doesn`t mean it will work today. And there are easy fixes to the exsisting problems.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Brady Mitchell on 2003-09-08 19:21 ]</font>

Vlad Popov
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Post by Vlad Popov » Mon Sep 08, 2003 8:03 pm

"I have no ambitions of holding a World class event."
Brady Mitchel.


"A soldier who doesn't dream of becoming a general is not a good soldier".
Alexander Suvorov.

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Post by Hans Koraeus » Mon Sep 08, 2003 9:24 pm

Brady,

About the course setting subject. This is a complicated one.

Here is the current ISSA rule
22. COURSE SETTING
The courses for special and straight parallel slalom should be set up by representatives from three countries selected by a lottery draw. This selection and the names of the representatives selected and their countries should be announced on the main information board the day before the contest.
The history behind the ISSA rule as I see it.

Whatever descision that was taken it was always a hot topic.
Soon we understood that there is no perfect way to do this without criticism.
When we realize that the critizism is something we will have to live with,
the question became more of:
"How do we solve this to minimize future criticism problem".
We should also remember that the rules was done for international PRO competitions.
For national competitions the rules and the way people looked at slalom normally was the same.
Between countries it wasn't.

In your case Brady when you say that if you where selected you wouldn't feel
ready for the task. No problem.
The ISSA rules atually minimizes just this risk by letting the country PICK a representative.
If the lott fell on you maybe you wouldn't be first in line to take on the job anyway.
Another representative from your country could be selected.
And if you where alone from your country you would still have 2 other pro's at your side.
Actually it happened all the time that someone didn't feel ready for the task.
Then the 2 others would do most of the work. That we could be in the situation that we
can't find any capable course setter in any of the 3 countries is theoretically true.
But I have never heard of it happen though.

So the current rule of selecting 3 racers I think is the best way to handle it.

But...

- The rules are not clear on describing how the selection is done.
If you are selecting 3 countries from a bowl of participating countries it wouldn't
be fair to a country like USA for example.
But what I remember that is not how it was done anyway.
You pick a participant from the start list until you have 3 countries.
So a country with many participants is more likely to have one representative.

- Now this is still not perfect today I agree because inside USA you (may) have different
course setting philosofies. There has been discussion of counting every state in US as
an ISSA country. Personally I don't think that is a bad idea.

- Again remember that the ISSA rules where designed for the PRO's only.
There where no amateur groupings in the sence it had been used in the States.
Actually Europe amateurs was the Junior group.
Grown up amateurs is something new in Europe, and it was about time.
That's why the PRO/AM division never was used in Europe in the old days.
I think that for national competitions and amateur courses the course setting is not
such a hot topic and could very well be set by the organizers.

Brady Mitchell
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Post by Brady Mitchell » Tue Sep 09, 2003 1:44 am

Hans,
After reveiwing the ISSA site, I find more detail on who is picked for the course setting. It`s on the individual definitions for "special slalom" and giant slalom: that it states the pick is of *countries with the *team captain of those countries picking who from thier country shall set thier third of the course.

And yes I agree with you that USA gets the short end of the stick. I just don`t see an agreeable solution to this that would make it fair to the USA. And even if it were to be even viable in the USA by it`s self.

Can you imagine a race in california where states where the defining three parties, and course setters were to come from a team of each state?

Maybe for a "World title where associations have been in place a while. Currently, I still feel it should be the decision of the race organizer.

JG,
If someone plopped $100K to race on cobble stone, I`s bet you`d be the first to sign up.

Surface condition, slope, etc, can have a minimum standards set in as rules.

And Vlad,
What would it take to get your butt down here? JG came. So did PVD. Please tell me the PlankkR does not have limits?

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Post by Vlad Popov » Tue Sep 09, 2003 2:00 am

My Dear Brady.

I will organize a lil "nice-and-tight" ala "family-values" slalom cup in DC pretty soon. I thought of putting my $300 and naming it "win my money" Slalom Cup.

Ney. It shell be called the DC Open Brady Mitchel Slalom Cup.
That's all I could do for a dear friend like you at this point. I'm sure something good will happen if YOU try.


<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Vlad Popov on 2003-09-08 20:01 ]</font>

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Post by John Gilmour » Thu Sep 18, 2003 5:54 am

Actually I would be the first to try and win it on a Mountain board and then use the money to throw a real race.

I cringe when I see some of the older contests prior to ISSA.

And ISSA didn't stop promoters from throwing contests with substandard perameters. The Hamm Slamm had a surface so rough you would think they had just scarrified the pavement- not really an exaggeration. I know Hamm meant well- and people were excited to race- but bad hills, bad surfaces, dangerous or no run outs, are exactly the kinds of race perameters that we should not support.

Brady- your postulating on races is about the same as me telling you what type of bait is most effective for killing Oriental cockroaches - experience pays dividends. Get some local racing experience in- or at least go to the Georgia events. At lot of things make more sense after you have a few races under your belt.

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Post by Eddy Martinez » Thu Sep 18, 2003 5:03 pm

I have to agree with Vlad and John on this one. Experience counts. My first race was terrifying for me. But I have kept at this year. Several racers encouraged me to not give up and keep trying at the Luna Slalom Jam,Keith,Vlad,Goad,66,Byrdog,Rogue,GA Tom,John Harms. At the Georgia State Championships I was able to get 16th place in the tight slalom. There is nothing like being up on a start ramp with your heart beating 100mph and being totally focused on the course in front of you. Alexander Suvorov
also said " a good solution now is better than a perfect solution tommorrow". Eddy Tejas Outlaw

Rich Stephens
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Post by Rich Stephens » Thu Oct 02, 2003 4:01 am

From a spectator's perspective, it seems to me that tight slalom is totally unnatural for adult bodies. I think that fact that some of the young boys qualified as high as 10th in the open class in Morro Bay last weekend proves this: their bodies are more to scale with the course.

As a slalom spectator (and future competitor) and vert skater, I don't think the answer is to have the men train new ways of cramming their large bodies through these tiny courses. I think it's more appropriate to just stick to larger scale courses: Bigger hills, more speed, more danger, more all around skate skill needed, and more fun.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Rich Stephens on 2003-10-01 22:02 ]</font>

Claude Regnier
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Post by Claude Regnier » Thu Oct 02, 2003 4:37 am

Rich, I'm glad to say that the kids skated great in the Tight Slalom. The ones that did finnish in the Top ten.

I believe there were 2 of them. 7th and 10th. They have trained really hard for these types of courses and thier equipment is shorter and does seem to fit through these gates a little easier with their present shoe sizes.

I'm sure when the stats are posted we will se that cones count likely played an integral part in the seeding.

The difference between Tight Slalom and other forms of Slalom (looser courses) is that Tight takes a lot of practice to ride it clean. You can ride it slow and make it through a little cleaner. I'm sure some chose that method and the kids moved right on right by them.

You can run a GS course on a big hill faster if your a big guy with less skill then a smaller racer with more skill. the wieght factor comes into play here.
Many Happy Pumps!

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Post by John Gilmour » Thu Oct 02, 2003 5:14 am

IMHO many of the kids ride TS decks and start with TS. Travel to a big hill is not always an option for a kid who gets home from school with no way to get around. So they set up cones and run TS. Also recent sales of GS decks probably have outstripped TS deck sizes. Kids naturally chose a deck that fits their feet- in most cases that would be a TS deck. I could see no reason why a kid with a size 5 mens foot would want to buy a 9.25+ inch wide slalom deck to start slaloming.

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Post by Rich Stephens » Thu Oct 02, 2003 5:46 am

Claude, my degree is in philosophy, not pyshics, but last time I checked, weight didn't have anything to do with downhill speed. Can you elaborate on what you mean?

John, I was stoked on the performance of the kids. My own 8 year old has started skating at the skatepark recently and perhaps he'll be inspired to join in the slalom stuff soon, too. We live just two hours from Morro Bay. I guess my aversion to the tight cone courses is that it looks too much like a sport like skiing, and less like the skateboarding I grew up with and practice (a more surf-style thing). This may also explain the difference in the California versus East Coast or landlocked European preferences to riding Skateboards (they don't have the surfing background). Or maybe I'm just afraid my knees wouldn't last two runs on a course like that, ha!

And as for the big boards, I felt that the size of boards ridden by the kids on the course Saturday, looked more appropriate for them than the size of board used by Luca (but I hope he keeps using it anyway). Something just looked right about the way the kids skated, especially this kid: http://free.inkfrog.com/pix/groff3/NathanMB.jpg who had the best style I saw all day Saturday (sorry Olson!). Once again, I think this is the surfing influence talking.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Rich Stephens on 2003-10-01 23:54 ]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Rich Stephens on 2003-10-01 23:59 ]</font>

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Post by Jon Warburton » Thu Oct 02, 2003 11:06 am

HI ALL
rich, although mass would not affect velocity in FREEFALL, skateboarding involves ROLLING. weight is a factor in reducing loss of momentum through wind resistance if nothing else. i dont know anyone who skates in a vacuum.:wink:
i dont care if the course is tight or open, its all skateboarding and an accomplished rider should be able to adapt. i used the same setup with a small truck adjustment to qualify in all 3 slaloms at antibes and i hadnt seen a skateboard in at least 3 months.
just ride the bloody things;)

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Post by Claude Regnier » Thu Oct 02, 2003 11:50 am

Hi Rich!

Both JG and Jon pretty muc hit what I was trying to express. The kids that did rank higher in qualifying then some of the other Open riders skated great.

The course was tight. Yes you are right about the feeling your knee's take. I used my Arthritis rub twice on Sunday along with several pain pills. I hadn't had to use many this year at all compared to the last couple of years.

Using a short set-up to run something Big is a little easier then ridding something big and driving it through something tight. Although as we have seen practice makes anything possible or alomost.

I do not hold a degree in either so congrats on yours.

Strides post beleow is also right on.
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Many Happy Pumps!

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Claude Regnier on 2003-10-02 12:03 ]</font>

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Post by Michael Stride » Thu Oct 02, 2003 1:51 pm

Hi. My degree is in Law, so i'll argue anything with anyone!

Tight courses are fun, and actually they get easier if you go faster. Odd, hard to explain, but true. Effort is rewrded ten fold. I enjoy the psychological battle of entering a course at extreme speed and trusting your body and brain to get you through. 4 cones a second has to be fun and challenging doesn't it? The course on Sunday at Morro was indeed tight, but not very offset, and as such was not an especially 'European' style course. The kids that did well had boards that turn, often tweaked that way because they need them that way for all courses due to their lack of weight. They all did exceptionnally well, but a good look at who won, who placed etc and who DQ'd will tell you that practice, skill and perhaps a little luck all played a factor. One other point is that the winners tended to pump and accelerate the whole course. Some skaters held back in order to control speed.

To my mind, tight, offset slalom, on the flat or hills is extremely exciting. Try it, you might just like it.

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Post by John Gilmour » Fri Oct 03, 2003 10:03 pm

Kids also have smaller calves- enabling them to cut a nice tight clean line....go KIDS!!!

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Post by Mike Johnson » Sat Oct 04, 2003 5:25 pm

Kids have low weight CofG so they get through cones quicker....so short legged fat dudes also have low CofG's....the rub gets to a point where the course is longer and kids get tired faster.

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