Redondo Beach Group Ride - Sunday 8/8/1999

I rode at Redondo Beach today with the Scott and Monica "Mo" Thompson, and Zak "Crash" Maeda. One of the many highlights (I hadn't been to Redondo for a while, and was able to do a lot that I hadn't been able to do before) of the day included my first complete 360 spin on the rear tire... no pedal-kick, no hop... Nothing but beautiful spinning in the dirt. It was awesome! I was so stoked. I came down with my front tire exactly where I took off.

Scott Thompson's dad built Scott, Zak, and I sections (he made the section shorter and easier for Zak, but the same for Scott and I (although he didn't make them hard enough for Scott, I admit, since he is a pro). He timed us through the sections (dual trials format-style). Scott won, of course. Not without a bit of a scare from me, though, coming within 20 seconds of his time on the second section, with 3 dabs just like him... All in good fun... I'll try to get some photos up of the first section, which I thought was particularly difficult and interesting. Requires some good-sized moves off of odd, narrow surfaces...

I also crashed pretty bad twice while practicing, trying some much harder lines than I ever have before... The Redondo Beach rocks were not very forgiving... Got a little scratched up, a bruised big toe on my right foot, and a tweaked left ankle, but hey, I learned a lot today! The most important thing I really cemented into my brain is that using momentum is very helpful. Seems obvious, I know, but doing it is completely different than saying it. I kept my motion through a section of rocks going forward, and it was much easier, you just flow through the section (almost as if you're racing through it).

Hmm.. You know it's probably because of this "flow technique" that I crashed twice pretty bad today... Heh... Don't go fast through stuff until you know you have a chance! (and realize the circumstances for doing something stupid!)

Stephen Maeder