ASRA - Australian Skateboard Racing Association

A SUNSHINE Coast man who posted a YouTube video of himself skateboarding at 80kmh down a steep hinterland road has hit back at police who labelled him "stupid" and "irresponsible".

Check out Ryan (21y) video and the article where he said that he was training for a speedboarding international competition.
http://www.finda.com.au/story/2008/09/24/im-no-youtube-idiot-skateb...

A Policeman watching the clip made him feel like he was watching natural selection progress.

What are your thoughts about that ?

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Big props to Matt's intelligent and well-read response to the paper.
Looks like a great hill.
Meh. I dont think he was doing anything that was too unruly and dangerous. He probably picked the wrong type of road however, as there is only one lane going downhill, with two going up.
The most stupid part of it was calling the Daily back and telling them about Bathurst. That will definately bring negative feedback from the public and police about next years race.
We've all done stuff similar, at lesser speeds maybe, so i don't think we are really in a position to judge him, although he handled the situation extrememly badly.

Another interesting point is that the police saw the video on YouTube, which means that they can see all of our videos.
Personally, i think the riding of that top section of the hill was dangerous. crossing blindly into oncoming lanes is not a safe way to ride. its a good way to get yourself killed.

i have driven that road many times, and ridden the bottom section of the road. with the way other people were driving up that hill, he is lucky they werent there when he went down, as this may have been a completely different story.

This sport is at such a small state at the moment, this kind of publicity is never a good thing, especially with such a big race happening next year.

and yeah, nick, thats right. thats why its never a good idea to outline where any of the riding you are doing is in the vids, just adds to the posibility of the sneaky police tracking down our favourite hills.
I know Matt really well, and have ridden with him alot: beleive me, he isn't a reckless rider. There are several points to be made about this report, points which the media have left out.
# The footage on youtube was done over a year ago, before Matt had competed in his first event.
#The reason the media have gone on this "witch hunt" is that a few months ago, a young Sunshine Coast teenager saw the footage, and knowing the hill, decide to bomb it. At this time he made some very bad decisions. He rode a normal street board, NO safety equipment at all and had NEVER bombed a "speed" run before. He subsequently fell and died of head injuries.
The family were distrort, and rightly so, and the media have jumped on the "story", laying blame on the "youtube skater"
Our heartfelt condolinces go out to this young mans family, but the media also have a "role of responsibility" here.
The attitude of the Police is both expected and understandable.
Matt made a poor choice of time during the day to take the run, but he's grown and learnt alot since then.
All of us have, and do, ride roads which have some issues, and in this case a particular rider, while he was learning a long time ago has coped the adverse attention of some media journo's on the hunt for a story. Don't get me wrong, having dealt with the media alot over the years, there are alot who have, and will, support our sport/lifestyle. But unfortunately not all journo's are cut from the same cloth.
Thanks for providing the context behind this story.
persoanly i think this is bad publicity for a sport trying to grow and lure new sponosrs.
all the police were concerned about was crossing the lines and almost getting taken out when drifting wide.we are all about safe ridding and skating within your ability,this is displaying neither
as a ridder who is actually training and competing on the world cup circut we are always trying to defend the safety of our sport to the long arm of the law..this is not going to do us any good.
lets keep it safe..
The problem with all of this is that our sport is ILLEGAL. It does not matter if you are staying to the left within your own lanes, sticking to the speed limit or even waving your hand out to indicate your turning intentions, it is still illegal to ride on a marked road be it with a helmet and leathers or without. I have never seen nor heard of this hill but from watching the video (which was "focused" soley on the rider) we cant see what the rider is seeing. The tree's off the left of the road were not tall, it was not thick shrub and it was'nt walled so how do we know he cant see straight accross to the other side of the approaching corner?? This sport will NEVER get to the stage where it is an accepted household sport because the only way to do it (minus comps) is to break the law. As sad as it is that the child fell and died on this hill he could quite have easily watched "backyard wrestling", a Tony Hawk vert clip or better yet a Jackass video (all of which are on youtube) and copied these. I dont think this is worth dwelling on as no matter what happened it was never going to be POSITIVE publicity and any company/person who considers pulling out of sponsouring an approved event because of something like this is a fool. People watch Moto GP and ride there own bikes like wankers, people watch Clipsal 500 and drive there own cars like wankers, people are going to watch Bathurst and skate like wankers (not that I think Matt was riding like wanker in this particular clip). It is easy to forget with all the products, advertisiment, companies, clips, movies, media, magazines, documentries and what not but this sport is an illegal activity from whatever angle you look at it.

Peace
Dani
Well said, Dani.
Just an update on this: Matt has been charged, and can expect a $600 fine, but the official charging of him was done over a cup of coffee, extremely casual. Unfortunately for us as a group/sport, the Police were put in a position of "being seen to be doing" by the media. The upside of all of this is that the Police have turned around and said that if we can prove insurance coverage, they will support us in ANY road closures which we apply for on the Sunshine Coast. There are alot of great hills in SE Qld, and the Noosa Regional Council are trying to get events of interest to be held here.
Not a brilliant occurance for our sport( the story), but there is a positive to come out of it.
yeah i do agree that this is an illegal sport and there is always going to be bad publicity..but the fact that they gave him a $600 fine instead of the $30 for ridding a wheeled recreational vehicle on a main road shows they were focusing on crosssing the lanes..i know this is more of a case of bad luck we are all guilty of crossing the lanes at some time but we need to set the example and make it as safe as possible..id like to skate with all you guys till we're old men
As you say Andrew, some good has come out of this. I would support any allowed comps uphere in a heartbeat. We have some great runs around here, that would be better with some haybales on the corners.
Most extreme sports have endured massive community backlash,usually because of lack of knowledge of the particular sport and the publics and police's tiny minds, Snowboarders were HATED on the slopes, Street skaters at one time were considered PESTS, now councils cant build parks for them quick enough,and most skaters are superstars and TV hosts.
The more insurers ravage our land of any last scrap of fun to be had, the more people are turning to extreme sports.
I have found over my riding career wether the publicity is percieved as good or bad, it still helps the sport in the long run.
Maybe like the street skaters, if we never give up on our sport, then eventually we will be seen as real atheletes, and maybe more oportunities may come our way.
Hell we are the best in the world at the moment Eg; Jackson (Speedboard) Nick Duffield (Streetluge) Brett Phillips(Gbike) and our racing curcuit is still 15 years behind the rest of the world and still struggling.
Crossin the line was dumb, maybe do it again and practice ya foot braking more, and do it at dawn !!.
All our riders wear more protection than most of those super bike guys that the coppers scrape off the road !!!

PAT
if anything he should have stuck in his lane instead of riding so high through the corners , the chase car in the video with its tyres screeching and the guy driving laughing didnt help either. I guess it is all about perception how a 21 year old percieves something is a lot different to a policeman or grieving family might.

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