Race Season is almost upon us which means it’s time to go fast! This year is going to be a big one because all the QLD boys and girls have been improving rapidly and are now ready to dominate at Newtons Nation and Tame the Taipan.
Last year saw a massive shift in the way people were setting up their boards. They got smaller in every way and trucks shrunk to match them, the result of this being more grip, tighter lines and easier turning. It is a fair bit more challenging to ride however, but once you get the hang of it your riding will go to another level.
While everything was shrinking, one part got taller and wider – Wheels.
This year there appear to be three main contenders for the fastest wheel: Venom Magnums, Cuei Killers and Seismic Alphas. All of these wheels are super high rebound, super grippy and STUPIDLY fast.
My pick for racing this year will be the Seismic Alphas because I love their insane acceleration, easy slide and predictable yet vice-like hookup.
All these wheels are 75mm+ which is the new standard size for maximum speed, with 60mm+ widths for all the grip possible. Older wheels that aren’t above these sizes simply can’t compete.
Two of the most important things to look out for before racing is that your bearings are in good nick and that your griptape is fresh. When you’re going 100 km/h+, any seized bearings will be really dangerous as they can melt your wheel! 3 wheels and 1 axle on the road at 100 km/h is not gonna do you any favours.
Something that can be very useful to have in your tool box is a bottle of Skanunu! This stuff not only lubes your bearings but will also clean any dirt that got in during your race. And the good part is you don’t need to remove your wheels/bearings!
Also, don’t forget to put new grip before the race. The last thing you want is having to change your grip when everyone else is sending down the hill you paid to skate. Plus, you don’t wanna be slipping off your board at these speeds!!
I would love to talk about the best tips and lines for making it down the hill as fast as possible but to be honest I’m still learning and won’t have the most solid advice! I’ll be following the best of the best trying to take in as much as possible and finding out little tips along the way. When it comes to skating, the best way to learn is to just get out there, give it a go and learn from what goes wrong!
I expect to see far more people at the races this year compared to last as I feel the racing scene has grown a lot! If you aren’t racing you’re blowing it but, if you can’t race for some reason, at least come down and watch!
April 5th: Newton’s 2019 / Bathurst
April 12th: Tame The Taipan – IDF World Qualifier / Gilston (Gold Coast)
For more details, go to ASRA website.
Written by Jack Gooley.
Cover photo of Sol Ewart, taken by Linus Marsh.