Tuesday

Back on Crackbook

I got rid of the half a$$ TYRANT page I made on Facebook last year and created a new one. Get on it, become a fan: CLICK HERE.

Monday Evening @ Guilford

T, Arnwine, and I headed down to the Guilford Skatepark last night for a late afternoon/early evening session. We were surprised to see at least 10 skaters at the park, it is typically a ghost town. A few MTB riding locals I chat with on PinkBike.com showed up and were getting rad. Pete Krol, Schmidt, his girlfriend, and their dog showed up later in the evening. After the skaters cleared out around 7:45 we ended up having a really fun session. We were able to bomb around the park, Schmidt let his dog Lager loose and he was running up and down the ramps, and we rode until it was pitch black around 9:00. I must admit, Pete Krol impressed me! I don't know how much he has been riding his BMX bike, but Pete looked really comfy on it last night and was getting some decent air and flowing the park well. Bry was trying a good size fufanu, Schmidt was boosting the big quarter, T was clearing the box jump with ease, and all in all we had a good time!

Guilford Photos: CLICK HERE

Monday

TYRANT Merchandise Clarification

I received a few e-mails from guys I met at Highland this weekend about buying TYRANT merch. The "Store" link from the site goes to an off site vendor that prints shirts for me. The quality is great, the turnaround is quick, and there is a wide variety of clothing styles....but there are only a few designs available there. I am still screening most of the clothing in house! For now, if you want any of the items that have been featured on the blog (jackets, hoodies, shirts, etc.) contact me directly and we can talk: rideTYRANT@yahoo.com I am trying to find the most effective way to set up a shopping cart on the new site, not sure if I want to use Payl, CartFly, etc. Thanks for the support folks!

Sunday @ Rockwell

Bry and I headed over to Rockwell Park in Bristol early in the day to get some runs in before the park got mobbed. Yeah, that lasted about 15 minutes then the droves of teenie boppers arrived. It was a gorgeous New England Summer day, and despite still battling the flu, Bry was throwing down some tailwhips and huge ledge manuals. "Tiny TYRANT" is riding brakeless again and has his Hang 5's pretty dialed. Look for a new edit by Brandon to be posted on the blog later in the week.

Rockwell Photos: CLICK HERE

Sunday

Highland Open Slopestyle Competition

Yesterday was a super fun day, despite being a total rollercoaster of emotions. Dave Blachura rode in the Open Slopestyle Comp. at Highland Mountain Bike Park, missing his girlfriends High School graduation party to do so. The comp. was jam packed with talent and I was totally blow away by the bag of tricks some of those dudes had. Barspins, tailwhips, backflips, tuck no handers, 360's, nothings, cork flips, etc. all like 15 feet in the air! Dave rode really well in the qualifiers, which was a jam session, and surprised us all when it was announced he was the #1 qualifier going into the 5 man final. Of course, we were all giddy and cheering for Dave, its the first time the kids really done well in a larger event...and there were 3 invites to the Claymore Challenge up for grabs! The finals were a "Best 2 Runs" format and the heavy hitters threw down big! In Dave's 1st run he got tangled in his bike doing a backflip and ate sh!t on the lander sending him off course straight into a mud pit. When I saw Dave wasn't hurt I was screaming at him to keep going on to the next obstacle until I noticed his whole right arm and handlebars were solid mud. Run 1 was a bust and put pressure on Dave to throw down in his 2nd go at it. In run 2 Dave 270'd the big hip and landed squirrely resulting in his hand slipping off the bars and hitting himself in the face and double pinch flats. I'm going to be honest, in all my years of racing road and mountain, I've never seen an athlete end up with such sh!t luck in an event. Dave proved he has what it takes takes to get a Claymore invite, but it just wasn't in the cards yesterday. On a positive note, there is a LCQ on July 17th, the day before Claymore, and 2 more invites are up for grabs. You can be sure Dave will be training his a$$ off at The Lot over the next few weeks and be back on the 17th to throw down. I'm stoked for Dave, he rode well, looked comfy on his bike, and most importantly...had fun! At the end of the day he didn't take home a win, but Dave proved he has a ton of potential and is on the come up! Congrats dude! and as always, thanks for repping TYRANT. The new "Dirty Dave" shirts will be done before the 17th!

Props to everyone at Highland who helped out making this event a reality. The course was dialed and it appeared everyone had a good time. Thanks.

Highland Photos: CLICK HERE













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Friday

22" of BMX Love!

After months of looking at frames I have made the decision to go with the new 2009 MacNeil Deuce Deuce. 22" top tube, 14.25" rear end, matte black, and they have it down to 5 lbs. Nice, I'm so stoked! This thing is going to be a beast!

Thursday

New Skatepark: Jewett City

Man, the Eastern half of the state is just hammering out parks. Griswold, Norwich, Danielson! Why can't we get a decent one somewhere in Middlesex County?!?! Jewett City will be breaking ground on a $40,000 skate plaza that will be done by the Fall. A flatlander is involved in the project which is a promising sign bikes will be allowed. Read the article HERE.

Wednesday

Back in the Day #2

I came across a CD of photos from late 2003 and early 2004. I tossed a few more shots up on the TYRANT Flickr account, CHECK 'EM OUT.

Arnwine in his basement circa 2003

Tuesday

New Skatepark: Windsor Locks

It appears another skatepark is opening in Connecticut, this time in Windsor Locks. It is going to be the size of 3 tennis courts, which is pretty big, but it will be supervised and locked at certain times of the week which can get annoying. No word yet whether bikes will be permitted or not. Read the article HERE.

Monday

Looking Back...

Man, I can't believe this will be the 7th Anniversary of TYRANT. There were up years, there have been down years, but slowly and steadily I have kept the passion for riding alive since 2002. T and I spent some time last night going through hundreds of photographs I shot back in the day long before I had a digital camera. Wow, I've ridden some great parks in the past 7 years...hundreds of sessions at the old MSC in Westfield, Mass, the old Westerly, RI Park, Skater Island, Skater Paradise (Shrewsbury and Framingham), East Coast Terminal, Chenga World, Shebang, Section 8...all parks that sadly no longer exist! We've taken trips all over the US to the UGP Roots Jam, Ghetto Street Jam, Louisville Skatepark, all the Ohio Parks, Rye Airfield, Incline Club and many more. Thanks to all my friends for the support over the years and most importantly thanks for loving to ride your bikes and have fun! Here is to another 7 years of madness!

Photos 2000-2004: CLICK HERE

Schmidt at the old Westerly Park circa 2002

Friday

Canton Closing?

There was an article in The Hartford Courant today about the Canton Skatepark and how the town wants to close it due to vandalism and people not following the rules...the helmet rule being the biggest one! READ HERE. Arnwine, Crabb, Ry Howard, and I used to ride Canton a lot back in the day and it's a fun little park. It totally bums me out to see how ungrateful and disrespectful local kids can be at their own park, especially when their actions are putting the park at risk of closing. It's been 2 years since I've been to Canton, but it looks like I'm going to be headed there very soon. Gotta' get in a final session before it's gone for good!

Tiny TYRANT getting rad at Canton back in 2007

Thursday

More East Hampton Sk8 Park News

So the town hired a company to come up with a "Master Plan" for all of Sears Park and that plan does include a skatepark. Mind you, this $1.2 million plan has to be approved, but the fact that they are recognizing the need for a skatepark is a great! Sadly, there is opposition in town, as to be expected! Check out this site: CLICK HERE.

Is some tennis tool really crying about 1 less court in town for them to slap their furry green balls around on. I've heard it all now!!!

Mid-Week Guilford Session

Arnwine, T, and I rode Guilford again last night and had a lot of fun. That park has a ton of lines and the layout allows you to maintain some good speed and flow. The highlight of the day was T jumping and clearing the box jump for the first time. After several close attempts on Saturday, T pedaled hard at the box last night and cleared it. After the inital jump, she went ahead and did it 2 more times...each a little higher and less "tuck bomber" racer style ;) I was psyched! Arnwine decided to get crafty with a hop onto the flat rail, ride up, and tailwhip off over the flat top of the pyramid into the wedge. Burly! Another super fun session in the books.

Photos: CLICK HERE

Tuesday

Lunatics @ The Lot

WOW! Tonight's Lot session was bonkers! Blachura threw down some dialed tuck no-hander backflips, Erik Zukowski learned backflips like a man...no foam pit...and nearly died in the process, and Arnwine got his turndowns c-c-c-clicked! I'll let the photos and short video do the talking! Check out the footage from my ghetto head cam...a FlipVideo tied to my helmet with a TYRANT bandanna!

Photos: CLICK HERE!



















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Monday

Your Own Private Skatepark

Ever wanted a skatepark in your driveway? I still do!!! Check this out: CLICK HERE I'm going to buy a lotto ticket tonight and if I win I'm buying this tomorrow. HA HA HA!

Saturday

Saturday Session: North & South

Mother Nature finally gave us a break from the rain so Arnwine, T, and I got out and rode the day away. We headed North to the Newington Skatepark at 10:30 and rode for 2 hours. It was so damn humid out! Despite the sticky, nasty weather Arnwine manned up and landed his first manual to tailwhip. Yeah boy! After a brief siesta in the shade of a nearby tree shoveling some Taco Hell bean burritos down the hatch we headed South to the Guilford Skatepark. Last week I was shocked to see some photos of kids on mountain bikes riding a grafitti covered Guilford Skatepark. It was total news to me that the park was still around and I was psyched to hear the park is no longer supervised or $5 to ride. The last time I rode Guilford was 4 years ago!!! (2005 photos.) We rode Guilford for 3 hours and had a great time. Bry was boosting the quarter and throwing down whips over the hip, T was jumping the box jump which totally impressed me, and I was just dorking around like usual. No rain & no major injuries + lots or riding = great saturday!

Saturday Photos: CLICK HERE

Friday

TYRANT Loves Dirt!

So this is the preliminary layout of the "Dirty Dave" shirt featuring Dave Blachura boosting a disco can-can at The Lot. I'm sure there will be a few tweaks made, but if all goes well we'll all be rocking these shirts at the Slopestyle Open Competition that Dave is competing in at Highland on June 27th.



















In other dirty news, my cousin will be showing up to the TNT Trails with his Kubota tractor on June 28th. We'll be spending the whole day digging, stacking, and packing as many jumps as we can to get the trails dialed in and up and running. If you are around that day, come lend a hand! Sometime in early July we'll be having a trails jam and the Reverend Matt Lolli will be blessing the trails and we'll christen them with a Colt 45 toast. I'll have more info as the date approches.

Monday

More Highland...

I was having too much fun taking photographs so I did very little filming at Highland. Here are a few clips of the guys I captured with the FlipVideo.

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Sunday

Saturday @ Highland

"Tiny TYRANT", Arnwine, Blachura, Stock, Joe D., and myself road tripped it up to Highland yesterday to get dirty. Mike and Joe shredded the downhill trails most of the day while the rest of us rotated between the small jump park, big jump park, and mulch pit...Highlands take on the foam pit. The folks at Highland gave me a "Media Pass" for the day so I could take the lift up and shoot photos of the guys...which was much appreciated! Thank You! Late in the day we all made our way to the top of the mountain and the guys took a few group runs down NE Style and then again down Hellion with me chasing them for photos. Bryan and Brandon, the 2 non-mountain bikers, hopped on Joe and Dave's spare MTB's and gave downhill a try. Brandon looked right at home on Dave's new Sinister DNA boosting the wallride on NE Style and jumping all the tables. Bryan was pretty comfy on Joe's dual suspended Jamis and gave the wallride and some of the jumps a go. I'll be honest, I was pretty impressed, those 2 held their own. Are we going to see these 2 riding MTB more often? As usual, Blachura and Stock were ripping it mach speed and blasting up, over, and off everything in their path and Joe was right there with them. All in all it was a super fun day of riding...and shooting photos. I'll be headed back up with Blachura on the 27th when he rides the Open Slopestyle Competition for a chance to qualify for the Claymore Challenge pro competition in July.

Highland Photos: CLICK HERE

"Tiny TYRANT" Brandon Boosting

Thursday

Heading Up to Highland

So I am hitching a ride up to Highland this weekend with Stock, Blachura, Arnwine, Tiny TYRANT and a bunch of other maniacs. Brandon, Arnwine, and I are going to be bringing our BMX bikes and hitting up the dirt jump parks at Highland. I'm mainly going to shoot photos and watch the other guys go nuts. Stay tuned for some burly photos early next week!

2008 Highland Photos: CLICK HERE

Blachura going big at Highland last Fall

Wednesday

MSX/Cromwell

Arnwine and I decided to take a trip over to the MSX Trails to see what kind of shape they were in. Each Spring I typically put a post up about MSX, mainly cause I miss the days when we'd dig and ride everyday after work from May till September. Bryan and Blachura put in some heavy digging time at the trails last Summer and the jumps weathered pretty well. The lips and landers are still standing 6 feet tall, but a lot of grooming and raking needs to be done. Who knows? Maybe we'll be riding at MSX this Summer, something I haven't done since 2004! After scoping out the trails we headed over to the Cromwell Skatepark for a little late afternoon ramp action. Jake Lineberry, Al Sabo, and Biker Greg showed up so it made for a fun session. Gotta' love those 70 degree Summer nights riding till 9.

MSX/Cromwell Photos: CLICK HERE

Tuesday

New Edit by Tiny TYRANT

"Tiny TYRANT" Brandon Begin's tricks aren't so tiny anymore...the kid is going off! Check out this edit Brandon made featuring Stevie Churchill and himself. Both these shredders are 15 and getting better day by day. I'm loving the song and Brandon's freecoaster trickery! Backward manuals, what!?!? Stevie's 720 at Rockwell is bonkers...put a helmet on dude!

Brandon/ Stevie Split Web Video from Brandon Begin on Vimeo.

Monday

Track & Park

T and I headed out to do a little riding after work this evening. We headed over to Falcon BMX in Meriden for an hour or so to get the heart rate up hustling around the track. T is really stoked on BMX racing after our trip to the track on Saturday. Who knows? You may see her or I on the starting gate a few times before the end of the season. Hell, I haven't raced BMX since the late 90's, it would be fun. After our track session, we headed over to the Cromwell Skatepark for a little ramp action. Watrous Park was mobbed due to little league and mens softball games but to our surprise the skatepark only had 3 people in it. We rode for a solid hour or so before it was just about dark out. For the first time in months I left the camera at home and focused on doing a little riding for once. Sorry, no photos of our Monday funday!

Slaving on a Sunday

I spent Sunday afternoon in the trails doing work. A huge birch tree fell from our neighbors backyard into the trails area last year and I finally got around to cutting it up. Free bonfire wood! I cleared more brush and raked a ton of leaves extending the new path further into the woods. I cleaned up the entrance to the trails, stacking a bunch of rocks into a make shift stone wall and filling in some low spots. The highlight of the day was when I was carrying a 80-100lb log down to the 2nd lander and I spotted a 2' snake a few feet from me. I dropped the log and ran like hell back up the hill like a little girl. After I was a safe distance I decided some photos of the snake would probably be cool...from a distance of course...with a zoom lens. All in all it was a pretty productive day even though I didn't get any digging done. I'm going to be at the trails tomorrow from 6-9, anybody down to dig???

Sunday Photos: CLICK HERE