Wednesday, 26 September 2012

The signup raffle! and Comet Skateboards


Okay, so currently we have 12 people entered into the raffle for a set of Ceramic SMB bearings and a SMB teeshirt. 
Want in? Sign up and pay up for Hogtoberfest before 8pm on the 1st October, with the winner announced later that evening.
If you know you're going, it's definitely worth paying up and getting in on the raffle. 

And so on to our sponsor:

History wall in the shop.
Comet have agreed to give us some stuff for prizes etc, so here's a load about possibly the most eco-friendly longboard manufacturer out there. Based in Ithaca, NY they now have a physical store where you can not just buy their latest offerings, but look at their 14 year board history.

There's a lot of things that make Comet stand out:
First off, they're community driven; all their boards are designed based on continuous feedback from not just their team riders, but everyone else who has owned a Comet board and chipped their opinion in to the company or the threads on Silverfish. 

Secondly, their eco-credentials are very impressive - manufactured in the 'States  using a "closed loop cycle" for their materials, water-based inks and sustainably sourced hardwood make them an awesome choice for the environmentally conscious skater.

Thirdly, the overall company ethos.
This got them an article in the Wall Street Journal - "Ramping up" , and is generally why they run things like the Ithaca slide jam.
Check out their website to learn more or look at the sweet stuff they make, and then have a watch of the Ithaca slide jam!
Peace, love and skating!

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

A lack of miniramps and travel info

Firstly I'm afraid we can't afford the miniramp this time round. It's going to cost more than we can justify off this event - I'll be looking to raise some funds over winter to build it for next season, but that'll be a whole new post for another day.

Second up

The loop. Stratford has been
 left in for reference
Hokay, so the circle line loop (the part of the circle line that fairlop, Hog Hill's closest station is on) is closed for the whole of the weekend that hogtoberfest is on. There are replacement buses as detailed here, along with all the works:

To help plan your journey head to and use the journey planner - you can input the postcode and set walking to approx 15 mins. I believe a good option is to get a train to Romford station, and then a bus to the top of the hill on the main road round the corner from Hog Hill.
I'll repost the map here: Hogtoberfest transport , and here's an example tfl route for Romford rail station to the centre in this Silly long link!

Road access is easy enough, unless you have an old van/camper (pre year 2002 reg I think), in which case you'll want to look at Low Emission Zone homepage and the map is HERE! 

For you international people here are the links for Stanstead and Heathrow which should give you some help - if you need any more info about travel please contact me and I'll do my best to help.

Also for anyone coming from abroad, or living in the Uk and wanting to fly their home country's flag, please bring one along if you would like. The flag I will be buying will be 155 x 95cm.

Remember, questions are welcome!
Peace, love and skating!

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

More Sponsors and signup

Hokay, so the observant of you will notice a few more logos on the right of the blog. Yep! These are more sponsors - the new ones being

Gyro Uk 
             The UK branch of an international inline wheel company providing some prizes for DH inline

Original Skateboards 
             Who'll be sending us some swag in the near future, including a prize or two.

Dangerous decks 
              Who will be ever present with their danger machines the Mini Motos, shotgun proof boards, and maybe something bigger...

Marmalade skateboards 
               A Southend-on-Sea based skate company who also print tees - they'll be repping quite a lot of stuff, and if you're following DAS Industries expect to see some colab in the future!

Watch out for sponsor posts coming up in the future: and interview with Kami from Newton's Shred, and a big bit on our overseas sponsors Comet and Original. Boom.


Signup wise, we've got 6 weekends to go, and very few are paid up. To incentivise this a bit:

  • Win a set of Ceramic bearings and a teeshirt (cheers SMB!)
  • To be entered into the raffle, sign up and pay your attendance fees before 8pm, 1st October
  • That's it!
So get your pennies together and sign up and pay up to be in with a chance of getting those bearings! Remember, the more people who prepay means it's much easier for me as an event organiser to put these events on - The budget for Hogtoberfest is such that I have to pay for the track a month before the booking date, which means a LOT of money goes out a lot earlier than people realise. This is why its helpful to get money in early, but for you guys also a good chance for some swag. The winner will be announced on the day and will get their prize at the beginning of the weekend to make full use of both the shirt and the bearings :)

Looking forward to a very busy six weeks! Keep an eye out for travel info in a (not particularly) well researched post on Friday at some point!

Peace love and skating!

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Disciplines, a map and some blog stats.

What can you do when you come to Hogtoberfest?

I've covered the slalom so here's what else is going on:
(once my copy of photoshop decides to play ball I'll be putting a venue map up)

Downhill freeride/race

The hill is a two-route course, and last year people were clocking 33mph off the top left onto the straight (of course, you can go much slower if you carve or don't push so hard). From there you can go straight ahead and run off speed on a gentle right-hander, or take the race course which dives tighter right into a chicane style left-hander exit that straightens it back up. The runout from there is slightly uphill, but you carry your speed forward and round a right hander after a short straight. Want to see what the race route is like in a video? Funny you should ask...

Sliding/slide bowling

Sliding happens on the GS Hill, which runs parallel to the main race hill, and slide bowling will either be there, or at the steep downhill just as you enter the centre. You're welcome to bring whatever duro wheels you want and make screechy noises, because there's no neighbours to complain.

Flatland/messing about/Mini Moto
Sorry Shana Synne, I stole your picture!

Yep there's room for that aswell. It's not expansive swathes of smooth tarmac, but there's a decent amount of flat at the top of the hill to roll around on and have a play. And of course there'll be a bouncy castle. WINNER! The mini motos need a whole post to themselves, so I'll cover them later. The pic is a sneaky peek at them though....

The local area

I made this last year, but it's still accurate. Check out the general locale, shops, campsite, transport etc!

View Hogtoberfest info map in a larger map

And finally for all you stats geeks out there:

1) Over 10% of you are viewing this on mobile operating systems. Sorry! The mobile version is atrocious, but I'm too inept to make it better. I hope it's not too unbearable.

2) More of you are using firefox than chrome as a browser (boo) and a load of you are still on Internet Explorer (it doesn't tell me which version) So I'll assume you're all on the brand new shiny one!

3) Guten Tag! to all the Germans looking at the blog - about 20% of the recent hits have been from you guys, so we hope to see you representing in October :)

4) In the last month the blog has had 1400 hits - this is nuts as last year at this point we were only at around 500! The busiest day so far this year had 174 hits!

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Slalom things! UKSSA and Octane Sport

Tim Neal starting a Giant slalom run.
Picture copyright
The United Kingdom Slalom Skateboard Association (UKSSA) are the governing body for all the cone-dodging that happens here in the UK. Their men on the ground Sam Gordon and Rob Ashby have done a huge amount over the past years to secure HogHill as a regular venue and made sure stuff has run smoothly on both disciplines up 'til recently when both myself and Alex Ireon have given them a helping hand with all you unruly downhillers.

For a bit of history and their website, head to The story of UK slalom and have a read.

The UKSSA will be running two disciplines at Hogtoberfest: Dual Hybrid slalom and Giant slalom, both of which are timed and both of which involve a totally not straight line of cones to get down. The difference is that the dual hybrid is a race side-by-side with tight cone spacing whereas with giant it's just you and the whole thing is faster, steeper and more all over the hill.

Want to know a bit more about the slalom scene ? Catch up with Louis and Bruno in this video:

The slalom wouldn't be happening without the ever orange Octane Sport ramps. Michael Stride , a force to be reckoned with when it comes to super fast slalom times and ridiculously large ranges of longboard gear will be bringing a van of timing gear, start ramps and most likely a decent amount of shop stock along to the hill. Go check it out at!

Timing gear and ramps. 

Signup details and full pricing in the registration tab

Signup details and full pricing in the registration tab
Signup details and full pricing in the registration tab