Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Flatland Church Fight, 31. July 10

One month ago, the Flatland Church Fight was held in Litomerice, Chech Republic. 2 days before, I was asked to join the trip over there. So without thinking alot I said yes and met Rayk and Dave at the motorway exit Friday morning. 3 hours later we hit the Chech boarder and were kinda confused that the highway ended somewhere in the middle, 20 min away from Litomerice. We went a long way around but made it on time to have some practice before the contest started. Over 20 riders made it to this little village and the contest place was so crazy looking, since it was held in an old church. Qualification started and i sat around, watching every run. My run was at the end, which made me super nervous. I didn`t pull all my tricks but since I got alot of props from the audience it was super fun anyways to ride there! The judges didn`t really judged me tho, which was sad to see.
The finals were held a little later and I enjoyed some really cool runs. The constest was over around 5 pm so we grabbed our stuff and headed back home. See you next year, I guess!

pics were taken by anne yarbrough and martin from global-flat.com

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Rider of the month

In June global-flat.com did choose me as "Rider of the month". So I answered a few questions, took some pictures and the Rotm was done. It was cool to see that people recognized me just cause of this interview.
Right now they are looking for a new one, since "Julia´s ROTM was a real inspiration". You can vote right here in the global-flat forum!

There you go with that Interview:

I’m REALLY pleased about this month’s ROTM, for a many reasons.  First, we finally have a female ROTM!  About time!  Martin, our esteemed editor, passed on Julia’s details to me, and I couldn’t be more pleased… we need more women in Flatland, and BMX as a whole.  Come on ladies, be inspired and pick up a bike! Second, Julia is also moving into art/design, and also plays Bass Guitar, which are two BIG passions of mine outside of Flatland. Here are a few words from Julia to wet your appetite:  “Never give up if it becomes hard, just try it again and set your own goals. Oh and support more female BMX riders!”

You can read the rest here.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

10 Fragen an ...

Last week funsporting.de published 10 questions that i answered which was super fun. There you go. Oh well its just in german. 

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Let`s do this!

Alright, i spent my first blog entry posting the wof interview, because this was one tiny reason to start bloggin! This summer started with so many online articles, newpaper entrys and contests, that it started to get a little confusing for me.

I`m gonna post all of those things that happened during the following few weeks, also adding new things for sure! This is it for now, I`m off riding.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

WOF Interview

A few weeks ago, I had an Interview with Paula from Canada. She wanted to ask me a few questions to put it on wofbmx.com

Here you go: 

By now you've probably already seen Julia's promo video that she unleashed into the public just a few short weeks ago. I remember when I first saw Julia riding. It was in a flatland video she released about 4 years ago, for a girls bmx video contest.  I also entered the video contest, but I was floored to see video footage of this 15 year old girl from Germany.  She had a raw talent and passion that was so apparent it was screaming through my computer's monitor. She progressed so rapidly, and I could tell she wouldn't give it up. Ya, I see other girls ride. I see them pick up a bike and ride it a couple of times. They realize it's hard, then they use their bike as a chair before it goes into the storage closet, or into the classifieds. I knew within 25 seconds of watching Julia's video that she was a contender, that she was here to stay on the flatland scene. I wanted to be her friend. We started talking over the computer and kept each other updated with our flatland progression. Recently I asked Julia to do this interview, and learned much more about my German friend. Julia speaks english and french, too!

Julia Preuss: 20 years young and a rider since the tender age of 14.

I asked Julia to give me a break down of her routine riding.

JP: I try to make it to the spot 5-6 times a week. I mostly ride at a basketball court in my hometown, but sometimes you can find me riding the spots in Berlin too.  Riding alone is whats up. Sometimes its`s alright but also nerve wrecking cause there is nobody who tells you what you do wrong. So I totally enjoy to ride with the guys in Berlin, it`s so much fun spending time with them at the spot. It´s always fun, if Ali B. brings his big music-trash can-player along. I love good loud beats during riding.

WOF: how did you get into flatland?
JP:When I turned 14 I got a used Felt bike, sold it later, cause I tried to ride street. During summer I started Flatland at the Mellowpark, Berlin and i fell in love with that sport. So at the end of my holidays I got a used Flatland bike with a We the People Pony frame.Thats all I remember. Over the time I changed a whole lot so now Im riding a bike that is perfeclty made for me.

Julia rides brakeless, so I thought I'd ask her about that, seeing how it's such a BIG deal
JP: I guess nearly everybody started with breaks, but after a few weeks of riding I couldn`t fix them real good, so I was annoyed and got ridd of them. So I nearly spent all of my riding time riding around without them. A few rider told me to put them back on, which I did once, but I just can`t deal with them.

Riding brakeless defines your style to a certain level. Here's how Julia describes here style.
JP: A G-turning rolling style I`d say, because I`ve never liked scufing that much, and if I spin I just do it for the dizzyness ;)

WOF: What tricks are you working on now?
JP: I try to get comfortable with a few basic tricks like time machines or wheelchairs. Linking them, getting down new combos. Barflips and switch footed things should work soon too!

Julia is moving to Berlin in September, a move into independence and one that will surely increase her riding frequency. Riding with others is a great way to motivate yourself and make life lasting friendships. I asked Julia where else Flatland has taken her.

JP: I spent half a year in Paris to improve, of course, my riding and the language. A highlight was always the Marché St. Honoré spot where I saw a whole bunch of riders, pros and video shoots. During my time there I got the chance to go to Vienna, Austria to have a few sessions with the girl riders. I went to L.A. 4 years ago, also for riding. Cologne is always cool to hang out during the Masters and there are a few trips here and there thru Germany. This summer I`m planing to go to Hungary and the Czech Republic for some contests as well.

Julia is taking advantage of her location on this world.  So many riders would die to have these possiblilties surrounding them. But flying half way around the world to ride in LA is a tremendous indication of her committment to this sport. There are endless flatland destinations you can go on, I asked Julia where would she go if she could enter any contest.

JP: To be a lil realistic it would be Fise, but I also would like to go to some Japanese contests as well! But first of all lets see what the contests will bring during summer!

If you haven't heard Julia took first place this year at the BMX Masters, in women's flatland. The contest was almost scrapped, but revived in the final hours. Flatlanders have to fight tooth and nail for every bit of floor space, and keeping flatland in the spot light is critical. As soon as events start being scratched off the list the foundation starts to come down. It literally comes down to individual votes and riders to keep this action alive.  Keeping this event alive was Julia and the other girls who made it out to Cologne.  There aren't many out there, but they are the life support of our sport. It's difficult to get good companies behind events like this. I asked Julia if she could pick one sponsor who would it be and why.

JP: That`s a tuff one. I would pick a company that produces bike parts AND clothes including good riding shoes, cause tires, grips and shoes wear out soooo fast.

I always thought I'd be cool to ride for a charity, get awareness out there for a good cause and bring people into flatland. Picking a single charity to ride for would be equally as difficult as picking a sponsor. Here's what Julia would do.

JP: I think I would support a charity that`s all about children without parents and their education. Helping them to find a way to express themself, having goals and reach something in life.

Time to get down to the Woffle aspect of things.  Being a female in this male dominated sport takes a certain type. You have to be strong, you have to be focused and you definitly need to know why you're in it, and when times are tough remember why you're in it.  I took a few moments to ask Julia some questions based purely around this tiny detail.

WOF: What challenges do you come across as a female rider?
JP: I would answer this question without thinking a lot, there wouldn`t be a huge challenge that comes across riding. But when I see a few guys talking shit about female rider, how “ugly” we are and that we can not ride bikes then I could slap them in the face.

I very much liked Julia's response. There really aren't many challenges, except for the pigs. Overall I fair Flatland to be populated by the most supportive athletes to have ever lived. :D

WOF: What are some of the positives of being a female in this sport?
JP: I think its a little more easier having success in riding. Since we are just a small piece of the BMX community, its not that hard to get noticed. Seeing riders who are stoked about what you can do on the bike is always good and motivating.

WOF:How do you view the female talent on an international level?
JP: The talent of the ladies is incredible. It`s always fun to watch those street and park rider kicking guys asses. They really can keep up with those male riders with so much style and tricks. Love it. Same with the flatland girls, seeing them doing combos and tricks like the guys is so nuts. Even if it`s sad that I can count the flatland girls on my fingers.

WOF: How do you feel about representing your gender?
It doesn`t really feel different. I just go out, ride, take footage and show people what I can do, that I have fun doing it and that I love it. That`s it. Letting the world know that female bmx rider can be as good as guys is just a little part of this representing thing. We all still know thats it`s just about having a good time on our little bikes.

Basically what I get from all of this is that Julia is just like any other flatland bmx'r that I've ever met. Passionate about riding, experiences the same pain, difficulty and joy while trying to progress, looking forward to the next jam/contests and riding with her buds.

It was Julia's promo video that made me want to do this interview. I knew Julia was out there, somewhere in Germany riding practically every day, but for the longest time I never saw one edit, not even one picture of her riding.  I was curious as to why she wanted to be so underground when what the world really needed was a female flatland superstar/hero. I was extremely happy when this little diddy Promo Vid surfaced.

WOF: How do you feel about the reaction your promo video has received. Have you received any negativitiy? How do you deal with that (or think you would if it did happen)
JP: I just heard good things about it yet and this motivates a lot to step into another riding level, learning new combos, switches and tricks. If there was any negativity, I`m sure, the positive reaction will be higher.

WOF: Whats your favourite flatland video?
JP: The Dreams DVD by Terry Adams is really motivating. But I would give somebody 100 bucks for the first Berlin City Games DVD. Great riders, dope location and so well done cutted.

Flatland is pretty high up there in the scale of importance to us all, but it's not everything to most people. You gotta shake it up, add some diversity.

WOF: What kind of things were you into before you took up flatland? (Activities/interests) What other hobbies do you have now?
JP:Before Flatland I just enjoyed having some bike trips with friends, but never had any real hobby. Now besides Flatland I also love playing the bass or making music on whatever i can find.

WOF: if youre not riding, where can you be found and doing what?
If I`m not riding, I spend time with friends, making some music or just chill and sleep.

WOF: Any closing thoughts?
JP: Thanks a lot to all those who supported me with good words, hints to do a trick better and just being there for me (I`m sure those will know who they are, Love you guys!). Never give up if it becomes hard, just try it again and set your own goals. Oh and support more female BMX riders!

And there we have it. Julia Preuss, flatlander, bass player, friend and hero. Peace be with you all.

Link to Julia's Promo Vid.