fixed gear

A community blooms around fixed-gear freestyle riding

Avatar by on March 21st, 2018 at 1:34 pm

Ramon Antonio found a nice jump line amidst the cherry blossoms in Waterfront Park yesterday.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Ramon Antonio (left), Matt Reyes, and Devin Tolman.

A reunion of old friends has sparked a resurgence in Portland’s fixed-gear freestyle scene.

Matt Reyes, Ramon Antonio, and Devin Tolman first met through the San Francisco Bay Area cycling scene. Lovers of fixed-gear freestyle, a discipline that combines flatland BMX tricks with the speed and grace of fixed-gear road bikes, the trio is happily established in Portland. Now they want to connect with other riders and create a community around fixed-gear riding similar to the vibrant scene they left behind in their previous home.

I caught up with them under sunny blue skies and cherry blossoms in Waterfront Park yesterday.
[Read more…]

Track bikes to invade Portland for ‘Bone Machine Criterium’ and bike show

Avatar by on August 29th, 2016 at 3:39 pm

Team Ironclad Street Sprints-8

Get ready for some exciting racing.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

If you’re a fan of fixed-gear and track bikes, you’re going to love this news: Next weekend (September 9-11) the Bone Machine Criterium is coming to Portland.

Organizers have put together three days of track bike goodness that begins with an event at the Alpenrose Velodrome on Friday.

Ernesto Gonzalez is the man behind the crit. He says the race, which will take place on Sunday in Swan Island (and industrial zone in north Portland) is the first of its kind in Oregon. Riders must use track bikes with one gear only that is fixed — meaning there is no freewheel and the only way to stop is to push backwards on the cranks. Imagine a huge pack of racers riding inches away from each without any hand-brakes. Gonzalez says they’ll be flying through the course at about 30 miles per hour. There will be races for men and women and a cash purse of $2,000 (there is equal payout for men’s and women’s fields and women are especially encouraged to sign up!).

“I’m expecting a fair amount of people to come, race and have fun,” Gonzalez shared with us via email. “Many racers are flying from out of town.” Criterium racers from San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, New York City, Washington D.C., and Mexico are expected to compete.

Prior to the main event on Sunday, there will be a track meet at Alpenrose Velodrome followed by a party at Velo Cult Bike Shop and Tavern. At the party there will be a goldsprints competition ($5 to enter, winner takes all) and the talented group of riders and filmmakers from San Francisco’s Mash SF group will share a free screening of their new film (trailer below)
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Meet urban fixed-gear star Sean Martin

Avatar by on July 3rd, 2013 at 9:50 am

Sean Martin outside the Chrome store
in downtown Portland.
(Photo © Alex Milan Tracy)

If you think urban fixed-gear riding was just some fad that has been played out, you couldn’t be more wrong. In cities all over America, urban fixed gear riding has gone from a death-defying, extreme sport dominated by messengers, to a more established discipline with organized events, races, and big-time sponsorships. And Los Angeles resident Sean Martin is one its stars.

Martin, 33, is captain of the CBNC Cycling Team and a charismatic and talented blogger who’s taking track bikes to a whole new level. His big break came last year when he was featured in Fixation, a documentary about the world of fixed gear cycling.
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Fixed gear trick riding not as new as you think

Avatar by on October 17th, 2011 at 12:30 pm

Stumptown Joustdown-32.jpg

(Photo © J. Maus)

Scientific American has unearthed an amazing bit of bike history from their archives that shows the popularity of fixed-gear freestyle is nothing new.

In a blog post on Friday, the magazine shared images from an article they ran in 1899 featuring “two well-known trick riders,” N.C. Kaufman of Rochester, NY and Lee Richardson of Milwaukee, WI. As I looked at the images, I was struck by how similar Mr. Kaufman’s moves were to what I’ve seen by some of our local trick riders.
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Fixed gear trick riding catches on in Portland

Avatar by on April 1st, 2010 at 10:07 am

Fixed gear freestylers-12

Tommy Lee works on tricks under the Morrison Bridge.
Full gallery
(Photos © J. Maus)

Portland’s bike scene is always taking new turns.

Allow me to introduce you to Tommy Lee, Ramon Antonio, and Clay Caldwell. These guys are part of a growing group of Portlanders that like to do tricks on their fixed-gear road bikes. I caught up with them under the Burnside Bridge on Tuesday to get to know more about their favorite pastime and snap some photos of the action.[Read more…]

Macaframa Alleycat report and slideshow

Avatar by on December 17th, 2008 at 4:25 pm

Apparently it takes much more than a freak snowstorm to prevent Portlanders for participating an alleycat race.

Last Sunday, local fixed-gear aficionado Jennifer Carroll organized an alleycat to coincide with the Portland premiere of the urban biking/stunt film Macaframa.[Read more…]

‘Macaframa’, alleycat will put focus on fixed-gear riding

Avatar by on December 12th, 2008 at 4:36 pm

Event poster
– Trailer below –

Macaframa, a movie about the culture around urban fixed-gear/track bike riding, will premiere in Portland on Sunday.

Prior to the event, organizers will host an alleycat race that begins in Southeast Portland at Colonel Summers Park (20th and Belmont) and ends with the screening at Backspace (115 NW 5th).

I have to admit, I don’t know much about Macaframa, but a few friends say the film is very well-made and the riding is amazing.[Read more…]

Urban fixed-gear scene alive and well in Portland

Avatar by on March 26th, 2008 at 9:36 am

Fixed gear riders on the Esplanade-2.jpg

Ben Ficklin practices tricks on
the Eastbank Esplanade.
(Photos © J. Maus)

Portland’s urban fixed-gear scene is on a roll. A new fixed-gear website has been launched and two upcoming events are testament to the growing community of riders who enjoy the challenges and thrills of riding track bikes in the city.

Alex Kroman announced the debut of yesterday. He says he created the site to, “unite the different groups of fixed gear riders in Portland and give them a place to congregate, talk about bikes, and plan group rides.” Kroman says fixed-gear riding is on the rise in Portland and that, “it’s hard to pass a bike rack in this city without seeing at least one fixie locked up to it.”[Read more…]