The second race of the BDSL season went down in May at the notorious Bo Peep hill on the Sussex Downs. Brianne Collective's Dale Goodwin and Lone de Ranger's Paul Trice give us the low down and Thrill Mag's Sabina Edwards wraps up with her tuppence worth too.
Rumbling at the Peep - Dale Goodwin
Rumble at the Peep, organised by used-to-be-local rider Aaron Skippings, was the second event of the BDSL calendar. Situated near Eastbourne, Bo Peep is a fast sweeping road with two hairpins to slide for and definitely isn’t an easy hill to go full ham down.
On the day of the race, I set my alarm for 6am, had a quick breakfast and set off by half 6, having packed the car the night before, to begin the 3 hour drive to the hill. After a relatively easy 180 mile drive, I arrived at the hill and saw lots of familiar friendly faces.
After greeting everyone at the bottom of the hill, I began to get ready to skate and noticed the weather was looking beautiful, around 13 degrees and sunny spells.
I'd only skated Bo Peep once before around 2 years ago, in the wet, so began tentatively halfway up the hill for my first run down. Joined by none other than Big Ben, we took a lot of fun practice runs together, slowly starting from further up, building confidence and speed. Having never done Bo Peep in dry conditions, the feature I noticed most was the icy feel of the surface which causes scrubbed wheels to grip harder than freshies. Not really a problem though, as myself and 3 others had been to some big hills in Wales the weekend before.
Although the turnout was good, only 12 standup riders wanted to race and 4 Lugers. Nonetheless, everyone was having fun and it was amazing to see the progression of some riders that I hadn’t seen for a few months.
Racing began (2 man heats) and as we had low numbers, we decided to do knockouts first round, to get the top 6, then do 3 races in a mini league to decide the top 4 who would progress to the Final & Consi Final respectively. In the luge, everyone raced each other to achieve the same. My first heat was against Ed Carter, I was ahead and unfortunately he crashed on the main corner, so I was through to the top 6.
After some really intense heats, I found myself in the Consi Final against Ben Stainer and the Final was between Aaron Skippings & Jonny Braund.
After a manic push off the line, Ben had a slight lead into the first corner, but I kept close down the main straight. Ben slid slightly late into the main left hairpin, going wide but still had good exit speed. I managed to hit the apex and get slightly better exit speed. As we both exited the hairpin, Ben cut across and shut the door on me, forcing me to give him a little bump and therefore not enough speed to overtake. Ben crossed the line first with just one Board Length on me to take 3rd!
In the final, ex-local Aaron Skippings took the win, with a flawless race against Jonny Braund, his second BDSL win of the season so far. It’ll be exciting to see if he can make it three at Tregz in June.
Once racing was over, podium prizes were given out, big thanks to the Sponsors. Myself and a few others decided to stick around for a while to film some follow runs, Dan Ravenall filmed my run, as seen here:
All in all it was an epic day of skating - no big incidents, super close racing and a friendly atmosphere. How every race should be.
Cheers to Aaron Skippings and Oliver Slaughter for organising and all the marshalls for making the racing smooth and safe!
1st Aaron Skippings
2nd Jonathon Braund
3rd Ben Stainer
4th Dale Goodwin
A Lugers Tail - Paul Trice
Four streetlugers went to play at this year's Rumble; Peter Eliot, Gareth Chamberlain, Bruce Smith and myself -Paul Lone De-Ranger Trice.
We started doing a few free runs and straight away my set up was all wrong (set up for Beachy Head) and I had a little bit of a shake build up, so hit the brakes and pulled into Carnage Corner. Tightened all 3 trucks and went again.
From then it was as sweet as it gets all day. Mad head wind made it hard to get a good push start but once lying flat, getting up to speed was rapid. The fastest runs I have ever had at Bo Peep. 60+ mph. Could see from Pete in front of me, we were all getting loose. Feeling the luge moving around beneath me was a strange feeling, I swear my bum was trying to grip the luge! Right on the edge of losing control.
All my runs went well-ish. Until Carnage Corner. I went off-roading a couple of times onto the dirt bank after going too wide. I had warned the photographers this might happen. ;-) I don't think they understood until I was flying straight at them. Damn, they can move out the way fast!
After lunch it was into racing. We all raced each other on a point system. First race was me and Gareth. Nice close riding but Gareth just beat me at the line. Next was Pete and Bruce. Pete for the win.
Round 2. Peter and me. Pete got ahead from the start but I stayed with him. Out-braked him into Carnage but got the line all wrong and nearly took him out. Good job my brakes work well! So Pete for the win. Then Gareth and Bruce with Gareth for the win.
Last round. Gareth and Pete. I was sitting behind them at the start. Both got a good start but Pete for the win. OK, it's Bruce and me again. Last year, I was leading Bruce all the way until Carnage, where I flipped the luge. So this year I'm leading Bruce (deja vu), leading all the way to Carnage. Wrong line into the corner. Up the dirt bank. Cameramen jumping out of the way. I could see Bruce take a great line and passed me laughing! I heard you Bruce!! Mind you, I was laughing as well. Nice one! :-)
This left Pete and Gareth racing for 1st and 2nd place with Bruce and myself racing for 3rd and 4th positions.
Bruce and I are up first. Another great run and I made the corner this time! Bruce didn't make the corner. I just turned to see him go straight towards the dirt. Me for the win!
The Final. Peter Eliot v Gareth Chamberlain. Clean race. Pete Eliot takes the win.
1st Peter Eliot
2nd Gareth Chamberlain (LDR)
3rd Paul Lone De-Ranger Trice ( LDR)
4th Bruce Smith
Big thank you to everyone involved. One of the best days at Bo peep so far. Roll on next time!
...and then there was Sabina
Let's start with a nostalgic trip down memory lane. My Bo Peep tale starts waaaaay back in 2012 when I first got into longboarding. Saw this was happening:
It was the nearest event to me so had to go check it out and ended up marshalling. It is a stupid steep hill but it went onto the bucket list nevertheless. For giggles, here's my first attempt back in 2013 (that's my daughter yelling):
Things went very quiet in the Sussex realm over the next few years but I tried to get to Bo Peep as often as I could, each time slowly working my way up the hill, adding a little more length and a little more speed to my attempts. Carnage Corner still proves elusive, though, even after all these years!
Finally, the day of reckoning was here. Thanks to Bandito Aaron, we were presented with Rumble in the Peep. This was it, I'm taking it from the top - any which way down will do.
As Dale said, we gathered at the top with BDSL's Daniel Shinnie keeping us in check. 2-man heats. I was seeded against James Gunn. Heck, I could've been seeded against Brian from the Magic Roundabout and still rolled in last! I decided to forego any practise runs so as not to worry myself and simply threw myself into it on Daniel's "Go!" James was off, disappeared round the first bend and that was the last I saw of him till the finish line.
Pushing off from the top was not as much of a problem as I expected and going into the first corner was absolutely fine. Then the speed got up and, with the camber tilting into the next bend, I tried to slide and came off (of course). No hurts, so got back on straightaway and pushed off. One more slide-to-bail before Carnage, the inevitable slide-to-bail at Carnage and then across the finish line - with a modicum of grace, no?
I was stoked! I absolutely could not believe I had finally done it! So, so happy! Got a few more runs in during the day just to get it home to myself and that I can actually say I did Bo Peep and tick it off the bucket list.
Huge thanks from me to Aaron for organising, BDSL for overseeing, all the marshalls, all the sponsors - I even walked off with a medal. Well girls, you gotta be in it to win it!
Bo Peep, to me, has always been the stuff of legend. But you know what? Yes it's steep, yes it's fast, but if you take it corner to corner, if you can do a speed check confidently (or don't mind bailing), there is no reason not to have a go on this hill.
Except Carnage Corner, of course. Never, ever underestimate Carnage Corner!
Rumble at the Peep
Words: Dale Goodwin, Paul Trice, Sabina Edwards
Photos: Kai Menneken, KH Photography (Kev Hurdle)
Video: Skaters own footage and Blondot Productions
Uplifts: Motorcyclists - Toby Newman and Ben Carson, Van driver - Chris Ledwith