Archive for November, 2008
Bicycle Polo League of Ireland on DCTV
The Bicycle Polo League of Ireland Was covered by DCTV in October.
This is traditional grass polo but it’s still worth a watch. I really like the sign at the end that reads POLO GROUNDS – NO OTHER SPORT. They do a good job making it look fun but I’m confused about the Trek logos. Why have a paper propped up on his chest like that? There is no way they are riding Trek bikes, they even have it on in game play. I guess i had no idea that Trek was interested in Bicycle Polo.
Also, it seems they are a bit laid back with the right of way rules.
I found out from Fintan that they don’t play with the right of way rules, that’s the international four player equestrian bike polo rules. The rules being played here are the European Cup rules and also British rules (used by the Bicycle Polo Association of Great Britain and the Bicycle Polo Association of Ireland for national competitions)
Also, The logos/stickers were given to them by Trek. The Irish channel that made the video will be doing a series on bicycle polo in Ireland later this year and they are showing Trek what a sponsorship would be like.
Thanks Fintan for emailing me the info. If you are the same Fintan in the video, Warfield is a perfect last name for this game.
Check out irishbicyclepolo.com for more info
Bike Polo by Anne Paas
NEW YORK – Word started buzzin’ from Seattle to NYC about Bike Polo and now there’s a game 3-4 times a week at the Sara D. Roosevelt Park where people like to come and hang out and have fun. Save a horse and ride a bike.
East Side Polo Invite 4
Bike Polo Tournament
May 2nd – 3rd, 2009
Only top 16 teams will play on Sunday!
For more info contact Boston Bike Polo
Winners: Rory, Seabass, Pieter (Seattle/East Van)
2nd place: “Beaver Boys” Joe, Kremin, Brian (MKE)
3rd place “Running on Dreams” Paul, Zach, Doug (NYC)
38 teams from 25 cities. 2 days, 2 courts. One tap in spot.
I really want the media to quit looking to the wikipedia page for bike polo facts because I hate the word “urban”. So I was really glad to see “hardcourt” in this articles title. Then I wanted to punch myself in the face when I read the THIRD DAMN WORD in this story is “urban”.
Anyways here is a sports story from OnMilwaukee.com written by Maureen Post and Published Nov. 21, 2008
Milwaukee bike polo pedals hardcourt
Occasionally an urban underground trend makes it way inland from either coast and emphatically infiltrates this city’s culture. The Milwaukee Bike Polo Club is just such a movement.
Bike Polo is just what it says. Reinventing the vintage horse ridden game, bike polo includes riders on bikes, swinging mallets and hitting a ball into a goal. The game evolved into two styles: field or hardcourt; changing the technique, turf and equipment used.
Much of the push behind the growth of the Milwaukee Bike Polo Club is team captain and Bicycle Federation of Wisconsin employee Jake Newborn. Admittedly nerdy in his zealous enthusiasm for the sport, Newborn exudes precisely the motivation and resolve needed to sustain what could have been disregarded as a temporary craze.
But of course he’s not the only one. Luring dozens of players, (yes, including a number of women) Newborn is surrounded by a diehard group of riders who see little sacrifice in their weekly polo rituals.
“Bike polo is so inclusive. The bike really neutralizes strength and size. No one’s going to knock you off your bike until you start knocking people off their bike. We really want the sport to grow and we really encourage others to come out,” Newborn explains.
Newborn, who started playing three years ago, urged the league to switch from the field to the hardcourt style. The hardcourt style takes the game from the field to cement using a street hockey ball and a mallet made of an aluminum shaft and PVC plastic head.
Scouting a secret practice location hidden from snow and ice, droves of bike messengers, riding junkies and polo addicts swarm to get in the game two nights a week.
“Our location is lit and covered so we can play all winter long. Not a lot of other cities are that lucky,” Newborn says. “We actually came out last April after being able to play all winter and really shocked other cities.”
The talk, which ranges from technical gear ratios to debates over constantly evolving rules to straight up competitive hassling, pervades both local games and international message boards.
“It’s something that our generation started. I don’t know that it will ever be really huge but hardcourt really works in the urban environment,” Milwaukee bike polo player, Sarah Weber explains.
The bike polo season runs from April to November with three man teams from cities around the region, nation and world competing in weekend tournaments. Midwestern rivalries link teams from Madison, Chicago, Minneapolis and Milwaukee for competitive round robins.
“It’s been growing and growing. We’ve played tournaments in Ottawa, Toronto, Chicago, Madison, St. Louis, New York and Vancouver- all across the country,” Newborn explains.
The overarching organization, League of Bike Polo, lists teams spanning five continents; providing a forum for posting style communication between players around the world. Since the Website’s 2007 inception, players in Melbourne, Montreal and Berlin have been able to follow play in Milwaukee and vice versa.
“The rules are really subjective right now and so there is discussion to make universal rules. Concepts of court size or body to body contact; we’re debating all these simple, small things. Besides the three main rules, everything differs depending on which city you’re in. Milwaukee has a little bit of a reputation for being rough,” Newborn explains and smiles.
Much as the Persian king’s guardsmen rode polo horses in fields, bikers originally jumped on the concept of field bike polo played in grassy parks and unused soccer fields.
Bike polo was first seen in late 1800′s and accredited to Irishman Richard Mecredy. Nearly a century later, Milwaukee rider’s caught wind of the sport’s new found trend and founded the Milwaukee Bike Polo Club to eventually move to the hardcourt style.
“It’s easier to play hardcourt because you have abandoned tennis courts and basketball courts to play on in our communities,” Newborn explains. “And everyone already has a road or track bike; it kind of started with the messengers but moved to those who work in shops and into the community.”
City dwellers have always craved to create a sport fit to their surroundings. Just as empty California pools became the skateboarder’s half-pipe, bike polo “hardcourt” style accepts the inescapability of Wisconsin weather and urban sprawl finding value, usability and speed on concrete.
“We’re kind of in a transitional place right now. A lot of veterans either moved or suddenly stop playing, plus we lost a few people when we transitioned to hardcourt, so we’re kind of training a lot of rookies right now. So, now’s the perfect time for anyone new to start and play with people of your same skill level,” Newborn says.
Vowing to maintain complete control of their league and denying any national corporate sponsorship, the Milwaukee Bike Polo Club may have been a late joiner to the game, but they have certainly caught up.
“We are incorporating under the name “Hardcourt Bike Polo Federation” to prevent a corporation from taking naming rights. So for 2009 we’re already planning a North American tournament and championship with a tournament season schedule,” Newborn continues. “We’re trying to retain that in our own international player community.”
Check out the Milwaukee Bike Polo MySpace page for details. Madison, WI hosts the next tournament in January 2009.
North Side Polo Invitational
Bike Polo Tournament
July 4th, 2009 weekend
The 2009 NSPI is set for the weekend of the fourth of July. I share the common opinion that Ottawa / Mallets Of Mayhem are a polo club that host events with too numerous of qualities to mention them all here. The point is this, if you want to play with the best of the best (they are the 2008 N. American Bike Polo Champions) the North Side is your best chance. And if you are hosting a polo event of your own, stay a couple weekends away from this one.
Ramsay Bowl II
Bike Polo Tournament
July 10th – 12th, 2009
They are already boasting about a $1500.00 cash prize for first place.
For more info Calgarybikepolo.com
The 2009 Ramsay Bowl II will be July 10 – 12 2009. This is the last weekend of the Calgary Stampede so there will be lots going on here, and lots of parties and free breakfasts to be had. Not to mention our court is on the top of the hill behind the Stampede grounds so we’ll have a big fireworks show and music going on all weekend compliments of the Stampede. I’ll send a flier soon.
First thing I thought after reading Justin’s email was what is the Calgary Stampede? Then I thought about how many tournaments 2009 is going to have.
From my count there are 30 bike polo tournaments that have been scheduled in 2008. And 2009 is already looking like as many, or more will take place around the world. On this site I have a Tournaments page listing all the polo events that I am aware of (since the beginning of this site). This week I have added at least three new dates, and I’m sure that before the end of the year there will be more tournaments staking a claim to weekends in 2009. So, if there is a bike polo tournament you are planing to host, please send me an email and I’ll add it to the list. I also like to list the details afterwards. Results, number of teams, sponsors, that sort of stuff. Looking back on this years tournaments brings back some good memories.
Victoria’s Secret Santa Xmas Tourney
2nd Annual Bike Polo Tournament
November 29th, 2008
Details from Nick Via League of bike polo forum
Victoria’s second annual winter tournament once again coincides with the annual Recyclistas Birthday Bash
The Polo Tournament will be a one day event, on the Saturday afternoon from 11-6, at a new location – the Vic High tennis courts located on Fernwood St, south of square at Gladstone (address: 1260 Grant Street, Victoria).
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to register your team, arrange billeting, or if you would like help organizing a team. Inter-city and co-ed teams are encouraged.
Entry fee this year is a gift for the Secret Santa gift exchange. (Gifts must be under 5$, and found, made or recycled gifts are encouraged – please be creative). Players are also encouraged to bring a non-perishable for the Food Bank.
As always, we will have baked goods for sale by donation, and players sporting themed-costumes will be rewarded.
Following the tournament, there will be a bike race leaving from the Polo courts, ending at a birthday celebration for Recyclistas with live music and performances (including Victoria’s Velo Vixens)
Hope to see you soon with Victoria’s finest.
The East Van Crown
3rd Annual Bike Polo Tournament
September 18th – 20th, 2009
Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Save the date.
(same dates as CMWC Tokyo)
As of August 3rd, 2008
I really like this bike. It’s baby blue with a chrome raked fork. Nice.
Disk wheel on the front, 48 spokes on the rear. Pologuard, plastic platform pedals, rear (carbon) brake, short (plugged) bars, freewheel. It’s got it all.
All Photos © Doug D 2008