Archive for the 'News' Category

Shuffle! (aka the 2012 BFF London Bike Polo Tournament)

Last weekend saw the Bicycle Film Festival celebrate its 6th year of supporting bike polo by hosting a Single Player Triple Threat Shuffle Tournament in Newington Gardens, Southwark.

44 bike polo players from all over the UK arrived, err, promptly at 9.30am (many were a little bleary-eyed from the BFF party the night before). The organisers then shuffled the players into random teams of 3. The players  competed in successive games of Swiss Rounds. After each round they were shuffled into a new team depending on their individual progress in the previous rounds.

The big twist with this bike polo tournament (organised by London’s infamous ShuffleComm) was that shots with the broad side of the mallet (known as ‘shuffles’) were allowed and did not result in a disallowed goal as bike polo convention dictates. This sometimes led to a playing style moved towards a one-touch passing game, reminiscent of ice hockey, with moves finished off by a speeding attacker glancing the ball into the back of the net.

Some players felt a little dirty after their games, but everyone’s spirits were kept high by the relentless heckling of other competitors: “you should have shuffled it”, “shuffle that sh*t”, “super shuffle”, etc.

The day was blessed with sunshine and carefully selected tunes (each player had one selection) which mellifluously floated across the courts from the polo boom-box  (from an MP3 set to shuffle – completing the triple threat of the tournament title). Free beer was provided by Hackney Brewery, which kept everyone smiling even after successive losses.

A short break in proceedings allowed for an old school track-standing competition in the afternoon (despite the fact that every bike polo player now rides a freewheel). French Max emerged as the champion before a few more “delightful” games of stay-on were played whilst the organisers battled to work out the current ranking of each player.

The top 12 players were taken into two semi-final games before the winning 6 players were ‘shuffled’ into a final game. The losers of the final were John (‘H-Bomb’) H, Luca (‘Super Luca’) Semeraro and Chris (‘Nice Tats’) Pickering and the winners were Ali (‘Backhand’) Osborn, Jon (‘O’) Marshall and Robbie (‘Vomit King’) Warin.

Winning the final was short lived for the 3 champions as ShuffleComm demanded only one player could be crowned Shuffle King. Ali and Jono (top seeds) had to play one-on-one against each other and Ali eeked out the win 3 goals to 2 even though it was clear Jono was the better player all along [sic].

Prizes (courtesy of Magic Bike Polo products, Knog and the BFF) were awarded to the players before Ali held his Shuffle King trophy aloft his head only to have it ceremoniously explode thanks to the embedded fire crackers, remember: safety first kids.

Shuffle Hard Fast, Die Young.

Fan page on facebook…

I was a bit drunk the other night after polo set up the Facebook fan page

It has some photo albums in and other live updates from London Bike Polo.

We have a date! EHBPC 2010…

16-18th July is when the Europe’s best Hardcourt Bike Polo team will be found. Hosted by Geneva this should be one hell of a tourney. For more info click here.

EUROs 2010, Only 4 of Londons best can go through

Tension is mounting as Geneva are hosting the 2010 European Hardcourt Bike Polo Championships. Here’s Europes allocation:

There is enough space for 48 teams.
The names of selected teams need to be know by first may 2010.

1) Each of the thirty cities that pre-registered gets one team
2) Each city that requested 3 or more spots gets 2 spots.
3) Each city that registered 5 or more spots gets 3 spots.
4) The biggest polo community (and organizers of EHBPC 2009) gets 4 spots.

List:
City: number of teams allowed to come to Ehbpc 2010

London:4

Genève:3
Paris:3
Hollande:3
München:3

Karlsruhe:2
Frankfurt:2
Berlin:2
Catania:2
Barcelona:2
Manchester :2
Rouen:2

Wien: 1
Bern:1
Lausanne:1
Basel:1
Copenhagen:1
Hamburg:1
Leipzig:1
Grenoble:1
Toulouse:1
Lyon:1
Cambridge :1
Birmingham:1
Oxford:1
Milan:1
Rome :1
Vicenza:1
Fano:1
Budapest:1

The names of selected teams need to be know by first may 2010

London as one of the main polo players in Europe as you can see have been allocated 4 spots. In London players are getting pretty excited (me included), no less than 13 teams have expressed an interest in qualifying for the Euros.

Teams from London are:

1. Rotten Apples (Em, Gabes, Rik)
2. Cosmic (Mat, Todd, Tom)
3. BAD polo (Aidan, Brendan, Dave)
4. Los Coños (Ali, Jo, Sarah)
5. ELKs (Ali, Jon, Ray)
6. Sparkle Motion (James, BDW, TBC)
7. ZU (Brian, Hassan, Mike, Yorgo)
8. The Fifth International (Andy, Iain, Matt)
9. La Schmoove (Dave, James, John)
10. Spinal Tapout (Aram, Ed, Prav)
11. Fiasco (Adrienne, Tony, Josh)
12. Three Beards (Bill, Mark, Rupert)
13. Massive Cogs (Cameron, Emmet, Jon/TBC)

This tourney alone is shaping up to be pretty hot. Lots of frenzied discussions are going on about more teams wanting to enter the London qualifiers. This is probably going to be held in late April. Stay tuned here to find out more developments with the 2010 Euro’s and London’s Qualifiers.

11.09.09 – Stolen Trophy

From Todd of Cosmic:

At the Northgate pub on Southgate Rd, an empty place on the top shelf remains where one of polos greatest polo prizes used to perch.

Who could’ve done such a thing?

Rumors are circulating within the London polo community and it seems another player is responsible!!!!

This could break friendships and divide communities.

If the trophy is not returned within 20 days, a reward will be issued for the wheels and mallet of the person responsible.

Cosmic have set about creating a curse which will cause great damage.
Do not make eye contact with the trophy.

The gods are not happy.

The thief has put a price tag on ebay

Either way i hope the trophy and the team are reunited.
cambridge

Come Play Polo, Introduction sessions around London

We’re running a series of free introductory bike polo sessions in London. Come along to as many as you’d like and we’ll teach you the rules, give you tips on the techniques to improve your game, and organize games that you can take part in.

Sessions are free and open to all ages (under 18s must be accompanied by an adult).

You must be able to ride a bike and you must wear a cycle helmet. It’s recommended that you bring your own bike, but it’s not essential, as we’ll have a few bikes available to borrow.

Saturday 15th August & Saturday 29th August
From 13:00 to 17:00

Downham Road Play Area,
Downham Road at Ufton Road,
De Beauvoir, Hackney N1 5BY

Wednesday 19th August & Wednesday 2nd September
From 19:30 to 22:00

Harper Road Play Area,
Harper Road at Bath Terrace,
Southwark SE1 6QE

These Bike Polo sessions have been made possible with the support of Play Sport London.

playsport london logo

from last session at Downham:
julias first goal
me and b

What a weekend! EHBPC…

The European Hardcourt Bike Polo Championships 2009 London events started a week ago with teams from all over Europe converging throughout Friday. 40 teams (120 players) and only one team didn’t show.

Friday – Meet & Greet and London’s First Polocat.
Thursday night for Bill, James, John and Me was a refs meeting which start at 8pm and finished at around midnight… with Mike rolling by from Downham court. Mike had been making the netted goals in the dark ready for the weekend (more on this to follow).
My Friday involved ‘borrowing’ a few more of these posts and finishing off the goals. On my trip to pick-up these posts i bumped into the Coneheads from Glassgow, Olli from Germany and my house guests from Rouen… these guys were my saviour! So we grabbed a post each and headed for throwins at Downham where I finished off making the netted goals.

While this was going on the courts were being made down in Southwark:
courts

Meet & Greet – It was a massive turnout for registration and the polocat at Tour De Ville… With food and beers on offer.

beers
photos by Agata

Polocat – From what i gather the polocat winner cleaned up. The polocat involved going to 4 different courts around London and performing tasks. The more crazy/outlandish/giving beer to the people manning the post the more points you were awarded. Also there was a hunt for a golden mallet.

Wee Scott won the polocat. By the end of the polocat he managed to find the mallet, spray his bike gold, set his bike on fire and ride the bike on fire while being completely naked. words from MAX “basically he’s won”
The prize was some Rapha gear and a set of disk covers drawn my Max’s brother.

photo of rik en route to his post.
rik
photo by slamm

Saturday 7am – Monmouth for coffee to meet Bill then off to the court. Surprisingly we werent the first ones there Garlic Boy (Louis of Les Debutantes), Complaining as usual. :)

As the minutes went by more players were turning up. Then the players briefing and a run through the rules.
roxy
bill explaining exposed bar ends
R&B
photos by Kev

Oh and the nets on the goals were scrapped by the players show of hands.

Game on!

What can i say, the day was a blurr of some amazing and some not so great games. The games on the first day were ten minutes long and were being played on 2 courts with 8 teams being knocked out by the end of the day. The teams that were knocked out played a mini tourney on Sunday. Also during the day we had a newcommers session held by playsport london. Some tourney snaps:
Marc from FFF paris
marc
photo by Kev
Playsport session:
k

And… Yes all London Teams made it through to the next round, including the throwin team the Downham All Stars.

Thanks to shop14 for organising the after party.

Sunday – Final Day
Another early start and another day of games and reffing.
Since i was so engulfed in the game play rather than the quality my game reports would involve tapping, fouls and back chat rather than great passes and amazing shots. BUT… the game play had quicken and the goals were coming thicker and faster with 15 min games. More finished before time than the day before. I think it was clear to a lot of people which team would be taking the trophy home. The battle for 2nd position was still very unclear.

The teams that it could have gone either way for were: (in no particular order)
Torros,
Dans te Gueule, Puceau,
Berlin 1,
Malice,
FFF,
Netto,
BAD,
Zombie,

…each game has a story, and the lead up to the final started with

Malice vs Dans de Gueule, Puceau – Malice 5-2
which was in the losers bracket… they were waiting for the losers of the next game…unfortunately i could only hear the banging of the barriers over the shouts and screams from the court i was reffing so my write up is non existent. sorry.
kev and matt
photo by slamm

L’Equipe vs Torros – L’Equipe 1-0
1 minute into the game there was a collision which lead to a time out and an injury to L’Equipes Lucas who played on till time ran out. This was a closely fought battle and as you can tell by the score kept the spectators on the edge of their seats.
So this win guaranteed at the worst a second spot on the podium. Bearing in mind L’Equipe had won all their games.

The semi finals third place and a place in the final was up for grabs:
Malice vs Torros – Malice 3-2
Both teams were on top form not one player not giving 100% with lots of controversy and a called goal and plenty of crowd participation led this to be one of the games of the tourney. James Brown already a crowd favourite throughout the whole day, displaying some amazing speed and eye of the needle shooting and some wall like defending from Vidal and midfield feeding from both Iain and Matt lead JB to shoot some of the most amazing goals of the tourney concreting their place in the final.
debate
photo by slamm

Final:
L’Equipe vs Malice – L’Equipe 5-3
what can i say you’ll have to watch the footage:

http://www.sonshine.tv/websites/ehbpc/

lquipe
champ
champs
photos by kev

Placing and prizing:
prizes
photo by Agata

1. L’Equipe (Geneva)
2. Malice International (London)
3. Toros (Munich)
4. Discordia/DTGP (paris/london)
5. FFF (Paris)
6. Cosmic (London)

MVP: James Brown (Malice)
jb
Photo by slamm
Brooks style award: Candy coloured clowns (Karlsruhe)
clowns

Crowd fave: Dublin
dublin
photo by Kev
score board:
scores

I think i’ve waffled on too much as it is… but the weekend was great the tourney was brilliant roll on the euros 2010!



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