This last weekend, China hosted it’s first downhill race in heart of the Sichuan Province called the Yuping Cup. Adam Yates and myself went there a few days early to help with the organizing process and make sure that the first year was a success. Our input was definitley appreciated there and we were put to work, but the locals really had their shit together and the first year was a success.
After many hours of flight time and a few hours of driving at night we made it to the race hill. I wasn’t sure what everything looked like until I woke up and saw the sunrise. It was quite nice to wake up to this kind of view.
The hotel at the top of the hill had an interesting pool. We didn’t go swimming because it was too cold and the water didn’t look that good…
Yates and I wasted no time in helping with the organizing. Our first (and primary) job was to get he road lined with hay and make sure things were located accordingly. Here Yates is trying to size up the corner and make an estimate on the number of bales.
This hill provides what is quite possibly the sickest finish line ever.
Once we studied the lay of the land the trucks started rolling up and we got hay crew started.
Unfortunately the hay trucks left a little prematurely and we had to utilize rental vehicles for moving the last few bales.
The road had small rumble strips which we said needed to be removed. I was thinking they would get some sort of industrial grinder but I guess those aren’t accessible where we were. The next best thing was to get a crew of old guys and some chisels to take care of it. Truth be told, they did a pretty good job.
Some sections of the road were a bit dirty but luckily we were racing on those parts.
I don’t like these kinds of toilets. They’re hard on my knees and I can’t check instagram while taking a shit.
This was a typical meal for us. Lots of dishes and each one spicier than the next. I would ask what was in it and the locals would say, “I don’t know. It’s good. Try it!”
They didn’t have much beer selection at the restaurant we ate at so the crew just rolled up with their own.
Joe made sure that Adam and I had everything we needed and were never thirsty. His hospitality was greatly appreciated.
K (HaoHan) was the main organizer of the event. He can be seen here on the walkie talkie. This guy put in countless hours to make the event a success and I’m pretty impressed by how well he did. It was great working with him.
We took one afternoon to do a quick walk around the town located at the bottom of the hill. It was a beautiful little town on the side of the river with lots of old structures.
It was such a scenic town that painting classes were quite popular here. This was one of 5 groups of painters we saw.
While in town Yates and I decided to try some local cuisine. I ate one of each of these bugs and Yates had a handful of each of these bugs. Our tummies didn’t feel too great after that.
This gal is stoked on longboarding.
Practice day was a bit soggy out but we still managed to get in some runs on the hill and feel out the corners.
Some folks felt out the corners a little too closely.
There was a french guy there who was rallying on some homemade roller skates. He might have been the fastest one on the hill that day.
My board was looking a bit grungy after a day in the rain.
One of the locals accidentally shot his board off the road and it went for a quick swim.
A representative from the local government was there to make sure things were running smoothly throughout the event.
The opening ceremony had a solid attendance of nearly 100 racers and one drone.
After giving a short speech during the opening ceremony, Yates put in some time chatting with local news groups.
Yates was gifted a plant from the local community. The plant comes from the seed of another plant that was a gift from a famous general. It represents the coming together of different communities. Seems quite suiting for Adam to be given this plant.
The road was a bit wet at the morning of racing so there were people scrambling around to make some rain wheels. Although this guys process took a while, it worked.
Fortunately the road began to dry up as the day went on and we were able to skate the hill with fairly good conditions.
The locals were cleaning chickens at the top of the hill while the race was going on.
Fuck The World took a quick break from racing to get down on some of the spicy goodness that Sichuan has to offer.
After a few rounds of racing the finals came down to myself, Adam Yates, Max Ballesteros and Harry Clarke. Max and I managed to get a decent space in front of Harry and Adam. We kept it close for most of the hill and Max came out as 2015 Yuping Cup champ. Congrats!
After the racing there was a quick slide jam. It started to sprinkle during this so there were a few spills here and there. Nothing to major but enough to make it exciting.
The Longboard.cn crew really came together to put on an awesome event. Definitely one of the biggest reasons it was a success is due to the hard work from all these people.
Dog party time.
After the race was done we went back to Chengdu for a day and got to swing by the local shop “That.”
This shop was home to a cat that they called, “stoner.” This is probably because he eats pot plants that are growing on the balcony.
While in Chengdu we got some lunch at a local hot pot at a small restaurant. It was pretty awesome (minus the pig brain and animal cock liquor).
We left the skate shop and went to get a traditional Chinese foot massage. This was quite possibly the most painful experience of my life. Straight up.
Aside from leaving China with bruised feet. I had a great time. The race was super fun, food was…. unique, the locals were incredibly hospitable and the skating was good. Already looking forward to next year.