Since last November when the IDSA announced over 20 events across the country for 2014, I had my eye on the first event and one of the only world record attempts for the 1 mile set for January 4th, 2014. It was held on the beautiful Florida coast on the Atlantic side at Flagler Beach which is about 4 hours north of Miami. The current 1 mile world record was held by NYC's Steven Sanchez of 3:35 in 2012. I had won the last IDSA 1 mile race back in October near Seattle, however the course had ups and downs and my time was 3:49. World record attempts are only official when the course is completely flat. Doing some training the previous weeks, I consistently timed myself between 3:35 and 3:38 several times on a flat section of road near my house. My usual training as a push racer has always been to skate fast through the city while I run errands like taking orders to the post office and such. Fortunately we had an unusually dry but cold December here in Portland and I was able to get a decent amount of runs in. So I felt pretty good about doing well and possible breaking the record. Riding my Eastside Longboards Blazer since last summer, it has been the best feeling board for me and I've become one with it setup with Aeras and Orangatang Kegels. I've ridden this setup at the last two IDSA events near me in the Northwest which were the Push in the Woods and Centennial Trail Push Race. So I felt pretty confident that it would serve me well for what ever terrain I was going to hit in Florida. Before I planned my trip I contacted one of my skating idles Kaspar Heinrici who I met in NYC at my first Broadway Bomb in 2009. He was my first inspiration to get involved in distance skateboard racing as I herd about him dominating the New York races in the early 2000s. I know first hand from previous battles we are very even sprinters and it would be a good show for both of us. I had a good feeling we could push each other hard and possible break the record. And I was stoked to hear that he was just as excited to go to Florida as I was. As many of the IDSA events there are more than one race on the same day or two of a weekend. This one started off with a half marathon a bit inland on the palm coast. The geography of the area is a peninsula thus the inlet of water is pretty marshy and the trail for this race went through what looked like a home for alligators, snakes, and other low land reptiles. Being winter and unusually cold about 40-45 degrees we didn't see any of these creatures. The top 6 riders immediately separated from the group and became a working pack all knowing we had a long way to go and there was no sense in trying to break away as the pack would catch up (unless you are Paul Kent). We all were pretty even and it was nice trading spots throughout most of the race. There was a long wooden bridge in the middle of the course that was the only obstacle besides a block stretch of narrow sidewalk at one end of the bridge. There was also a turnaround spot at one end of the trail where you had to get off your board and go back twice. Approaching this the first time, I decided to sprint ahead to be the first one to turn around and test the rest of the pack to see what they would do. They all picked up the pace too and caught me fairly quickly getting back into form as a 6 pack. The current pace we were going was not as fast as I've raced this distance before so I knew I would have a good sprint left for the finish. All having hopes to break the one mile record later that day, we kept it under raps not overdoing ourselves on this first race. On the last leg back before we hit the bridge for the last time, Florida local Will Fogel slipped off his board and fell in front of the pack. This made Kaspar who was in front of me hesitate as he pushed and I narrowly missed running into the back of his board as we both escaped a crash. Luckily all of the other riders missed the downed rider too and we continued on. As we hit the bridge with the narrow sidewalk coming up, I wanted to be in the lead as it was pretty tough to pass on the sidewalk. The Otang Kegels served me well here rolling over the wooden plank cracks very smoothly. They allowed me to easily pass everyone to get into this crucial lead spot reaching the sidewalk first. Nearing the end of the race, there was only a mile or two left of open road to the finish after that. As I continued to pick up the pace on the sidewalk, I could feel someone on me for this stretch but I would not allow them to pass. And reached the end of the sidewalk first getting out into the open for the final sprint. When I looked back I thought it would be Will Frank as I knew he was very strong at this distance from the previous time we met at the Centennial Trail half marathon where we both finished in the same second. However it was Kaspar and he looked very strong sprinting hard very close to me. With only a mile left we made 4 or 5 passes on each other going back and forth with full strides. The rest of the pack was at least a minute back from us at this point as we raced hard to the end. Kaspar made the last pass with only 50 feet or so to the finish line and took the win! With about a two hour break before the 1 mile world record attempt it was enough time to recover, stretch, and get our minds focused for the big moment of the day. As the logistics were being put into place the IDSA crew, local volunteers and police were setting road blocks and the crowd of local residents were lining up on the roadside to witness the race. The course was set on the beach side road of the Flagler Beach strip and was predetermined to go with the wind if there was any wind that day. And sure enough there was about a 15-20 mph wind that day going South. As 10 men and 1 woman all lined up across the closed road, the starter blew his whistle and we all dashed like maniacs for a our moment in skateboarding history. Like a rocket Puerto Rico rider Miguel Acevedo took off with a good 20 foot lead on the rest of us. He had missed the half marathon that morning and looked very strong. As the pack started to spread, Kaspar looked to be the only one able to stay with him as he began to close on him. In my mind I was rooting for him to get closer as I was concentrating on my form with successive strides and brief moments of tucking. With the wind to our backs, the top riders were going up to 20 mph! With about a quarter mile left Kaspar made the pass on Miguel and I did as well. I really wanted to reach Kaspar as he was about 10-15 feet ahead but it felt great to be in 2nd at this point. Continuing to push our hearts out I could hear someone pounding behind me and I thought it was Miguel trying to get me back. To my surprise it was Will Frank with a solid and sneaky move creeping up on my blind side. I tried my best to hold him off but he got the better of me just before the finish line by a board length beating me by 0.33 of a second to take second place. Kaspar had the clear win with almost a second and a half over Will and I for a new world record of 2:54:90. Big ups to Kaspar for taking the double victory that day, it was very impressive to see him in top form. I was very happy to say the least and super stoked to take 3rd at a race where we all shattered the previous world record! The one woman racer Sidra Boyer also destroyed the previous women's world record held by Cami Best with a new time of 3:30:68. The next and only other chance this year to break the record is February 1st at the Charlotte Skate Rally. Huge thanks to my beloved sponsor Daddies Board Shop for getting me all the way across the country to this event. Also Timeship Racing and Push Culture Apparel for the awesome support. It was a great way to start off the year, and thus far I plan on attending several more IDSA events. Check them all out here and I hope to see you there! http://theidsa.org/2014-idsa-event-calendar/
Post Created: January 12, 2014
Kaspar Heinrici (left) 1st place - 2:54:09, Will Frank (right) 2nd place - 2:56:17, Robin McGuirk (middle) 3rd place - 2:56.50 Photo by David Massey on January 4th, 2014.
Congrats to the IDSA (International Distance Skateboard Association) for holding this World Record Race here in Florida. And to Kaspar for the taking the new record! This was an official Rad Jam event sponsored by Daddies Board Shop.
Complete story about this official event with closed roads. Photos by David Massey.
The locals here were happy to drag some of us around on their golf carts...seems like the friendliest people live at the beach! Photo by Warren Heaps
Riders take off like maniacs with the wind to our backs for the World Record! I'm often seen tucking after several monster pushes. Photo by Warren Heaps
The adrenaline was at an all time high as we all pushed each other to go faster and faster! Photo by Warren Heaps
An ecstatic group stoked to be a part of this monumental day! Photo by Warren Heaps
My race setup chillin' on the beach after a long day of push racing...match made in shred heaven with Aera Trucks and the Otang Kegels...