Sunday, October 31, 2010

Vibration Urbaines Results

Too lazy to write much about this right now, so I`ll keep it short.

1st Matthias Dandois
2nd Adam Kun
3rd Raphael Chiquet

1st Didier Genet
2nd Maxime Luchetti
3rd Prasheel Gopal

I was very surprised at my placing, but happy. It was just a good feeling to be out there, a much different vibe than a North American contest. Got a lot of applause from people when my name was announced, just for the fact that I came as far as I did. Apart from my contest run, had a lot of fun yesterday.

The pro contest was done battle rider starts, and calls out another rider to battle, winner proceeds. Much different than back home, but very fun to watch. It was a great show, and fun to see Matthias, Raph, and Adam all make it to the final 3 man battle.

This weekend has been an amazing experience, to anyone that is thinking of coming out to Vibration Urbaines or any other European contest, do it.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Paris Life: Day 1

Hey all, just want to let everyone know I made it here safely. Worked until lunch on Wednesday, went to my parents` for lunch, then headed to the airport. I may have lied to the baggage guy, when he asked if my bag was holding golf clubs and I said yes (best way to avoid paying the unnecessary $50 bike fee).

Made it to Montreal quickly, could not find a poutine for the life of me, so I entertained myself by texting lots of people before having to shut off my phone for a week. 8pm flight to Paris, 5.5h in length, with a 6h time change...trying to get sleep and re-adjust my schedule was going to be tough. I made sure I stayed awake long enough for dinner (and wine), and when they came around to clean up, asked for a second dinner (Adam, you proud son?), and a double whiskey and coke (flight attendant started calling me Mr. Double after that). Passed out hard watching Prince of Persia, woke up an hour before reaching Paris with at least a couple hours of sleep.

From the airport, I eventually found the train to Paris, and took it towards downtown Paris. Matthias lives just north of the city center, so I got off at the appropriate stop, and luckily found him meeting me near by. Another short train ride, and we made it to his cozy (read: tiny) apartment....on the sixth floor (too many stairs for my liking, especially with a huge Ogio bag with a bike).

After I built my bike, and Matthias updated his blog, we went for a bike ride around Paris. It was around noon in Paris, which is 6am at home for me, so going for a bike ride around this time didn`t even feel too bad haha. Biked around, saw the Eiffel tower, lots of cool looking French architecture, saw the Opera riding spot, and lots of other neat things.

After being taken to an American cafe, with Indian cooks, for lunch with a friend of Matthias`, I stayed back while Matthias went to go meet Adam Kun at the train station. I crashed for a couple hours to help adjust and avoid jet lag, which definitely helped me since we had a long night ahead of us.

After Adam arrived and built his bike, while Matthias serenaded him with some unique and original songs, we headed off to Opera, where Raphael, Joris, Mike, and others were already riding.

It`s a really weird feeling to go ride a spot that you`ve seen lots over the past 8 years or so, but felt really good. My nankai is acting up, which frustrated me, but was able to hit most of my usual stuff.

Ended up going to a little bar after that, met some interesting friends of Matthias again, and had a few drinks. Still not 100% sure what "pastis" is, but if you ever come out here, you should try it, Adam really enjoyed it haha.

Came back and crashed, woke up and headed to the supermarket and bakery for some french breakfast, now just chilling at Matthias` place.

Really good trip so far, and its only been a day. Heading back to Opera again tonight, and probably riding another spot in the afternoon as well. Adam didn`t ride too much yesterday, so looking forward to actually riding with him today.

We`re heading to Pessac early tomorrow morning, for Vibration Urbaines, so not sure what the plans for tonight will be, if anything. I`ll try to post again from Pessac after the contest hopefully. Peace.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Old Footage

Came across this gem of a video made by Matt Holdron last week. Matt came through Ottawa on his way to Montreal for a King of Quebec contest in June, 2005, and edited some footage of Prasheel, Jean-Francois Boulianne, Simon Marsan, and Jayson Plourde. Enjoy!

Just follow the link, and you can download or just view the video from there. Crazy to see everyone's riding from 5 years back, and how their style and riding have developed immensely since then.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Prasheel's going to France

Just a quick post as I've been keeping quite busy recently.

I guess for a bit of a back story, after Alex and I met Matthias Dandois in New Orleans for the 2008 Voodoo Jam, we invited him to come to the Toronto contest the following year. He accepted, and flew to Montreal (where we picked him up), stayed in Ottawa, and went to Toronto with us. The day he flew in, he told Alex and I that if we ever wanted to come out to Paris, we had a place to stay.

Since last winter, I had in the back of my mind, that I wanted to at least try to get out to Europe for my first international contest this year. After having a really good 2010 so far (riding and otherwise, see my recap past here), and knowing the contest season was winding down, when I noticed Vibration Urbaines #13 happening on October 30th, I realized this would probably be my last chance in 2010.

With about 5.5 vacation days still to use up at work before the end of 2010, I emailed Matthias for some information, and was pretty quick to make my decision. A week later, I booked my ticket, and in two days, I am flying out to Paris.

I don't really know, or am concerned with, what the plan is once I get out there, but I basically know I'll be arriving on Thursday morning, and spending a couple days in Paris, going to Pessac on the south-west coast for the contest on Saturday, then back to Paris for another couple of days before flying home on Wednesday.

Originally, we were supposed to road trip to Pessac with Alex Jumelin, but he is now going to be in New York while I'm over there haha. I'm sure we'll figure out a way to Pessac some how. I'm just excited to get out of the office for a week, go to France for the first time, and attend my first European contest. The level of riding out there, in my opinion, is considerably higher than over here in North America, so despite doing well in the NA Am circuit, I will definitely have my work cut out for me if I want to place well.

I'll try to update the blog a bit about my trip while I'm out there, and if not, when I get back home. Wish me luck!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Welcome to the team, Mark

Two months ago, at the DK Contest in Dayton, Ohio, Alex and I decided to add Mark Kuhlmann to Team Pralex, and had the announcement made by Catfish at the beginning of Mark's run.

I've known Mark for years. I think we met back in the early days of the Ham Jams (the annual/triannual jams held in Hamilton, Ontario around the 2001-2005 era), as he lived in the Hamilton area, and I was persistent enough to make the 5-6h trip up to three times a year.

We were both little dudes back then, although Mark was a little heftier than I, and adorably went by the nickname "Beefy" back then (which has somehow managed to stick around for several years, despite him slimming down considerably this past year). Our riding had always been at a similar level, but I always found myself extra motivated to ride after getting to ride with Mark, as I felt I had to go back home and try to catch up to him.

A couple years later, Mark went on a roadtrip, driving up to Ottawa by himself, and then joining me to Montreal for a King of Quebec contest. This trip sticks out in my mind for various reasons. It wasn't necessarily about the tricks we were doing, but everything that weekend was just about fun. The contest ended up taking place in a crowded skatepark, so the riding area was where ever we could find space. During the contest, Beefy and I both started a few of our lines from the half pipe, dropping 4-6" while rolling a hitchhiker, then trying to continue on from there. I won't bother mentioning the embarrassing story about Mark chugging Molson cold shots, and then vomiting in a plastic bag as I drove to Montreal the next morning haha.

After a while, Mark faded out from flatland for a little bit. We kept in touch loosely, but with both of us busy with school, contact was scarce. Recently, Mark has come back to riding, and is as passionate as ever about it, despite being quite busy between his job, his new wife, and his even newer pet dog.

I feel really proud to introduce Mark to the team, as he continues to ride and progress himself, it inspires and motivates me to ride harder to keep up with his progress. Welcome to the team, Mark.

Prasheel Gopal & Mark "Beefy" Kuhlmann from Pralex Gorier on Vimeo.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Prasheel in the Paper

This is from about 5-6 weeks back now, but this ran in the local paper, the Ottawa Citizen, on September 11, 2010. It was partly run to help promote the contest that I helped organize with Joe Mamma bike shop that day, and partly as just an interest piece.

Here is a terrible quality photo of the paper, click to enlarge, and there's a link below to go to the Citizen's website where you can actually read the article. Enjoy.

Link to article.

I was approached that day by a couple of people that saw this article and came out to check out the contest, which was good to hear as it helped bring a good crowd out for the contest. Also, I was recognized as "the guy from the paper" later that week...which isn't too surprising since I was on my bike at the time anyways.

Oh yeah, the photo was from this year's Toronto contest, and was shot by Dylan Leeder. You can check out more of his work at, or read his blog,

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

ASC So Fresh Jam

So this past weekend, I went down to Toronto to attend a jam out in Mississauga.

It was good to see so many guys come out, and to catch up and attempt to ride with them.

The event was catered. I think there was 48 sandwiches plus drinks, cookies, and snacks. I took a photo, but I'm having issues with my memory card, otherwise I would post it right here instead of just talking about it.

As usual, Lachlan has a video out, which he managed to get out the same day (dude works hard).

SO FRESH from Lachlan Cameron on Vimeo.

Don't expect to see anything good from me, as the lot, in my opinion, was one of the worst lots I've tried to ride in a loooong time. This is coming from someone that has traveled to a lot of terrible lots of forced to put on shows on grass fields and gravel running tracks.

Also, Alex was tuckered out from his night out in Ottawa and spent the afternoon napping in the grass lol. For this reason, you won't find him in the video at all.

- Prasheel

Friday, October 15, 2010

Good Luck at KOG, Cory!

So, friend and team mate Cory Fester is currently in Yokohama, Japan, attending the King of Ground #3 contest which is taking place tomorrow.

On behalf of Alex, Prasheel, and the rest of the team, we wish you the best of luck, Cory.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Updates from Prasheel

Photo by Alexander Pomnikow

Hi all,

So, apparently it has been a little while since the last entry, and as expected, there has been a lot of stuff happening, but little time/motivation to update the blog. Bear with me on this post, as it will probably be a little long, but for those/any of you interested in whats been going on with me the past 9 months, you may continue reading.


So, I guess the biggest news about me, in that it has changed my lifestyle the most drastically, is I have gotten a job and started my career. I started with a small company as a Computer Aided Design (CAD) Draftsperson, on January 18, 2010. On February 17, 2010 (coincidentally, exactly three months after a fortune cookie told me that "good things are in store for you in 3 months"), I was hired by the company directly, and no longer the temp/placement agency that I was brought in with. Nine months working here, and I am still enjoying it and learning new things daily. It is nice to have consistency in my life again, and a "regular" working schedule, Monday to Friday, 7:30am-4:00pm.

While I did enjoy the past few years of my life spent traveling and touring (with the Craz-E Crew stunt team), I grew tired of the sporadic schedule, inconsistency of work, and the general lifestyle that went along with it. I am thankful for being able to be a part of the company when I was on it, and the opportunities I got to travel, but I am extremely glad to have started a new part of my life.


Riding wise, I'm pretty happy with this past year. While I cannot ride as much as I used to (considering a year ago, I was unemployed and riding was my main focus), I still am able to make time for a session or two a night, and try to make better use of the time that I do have. I have been a little bit more quiet with the videos this year, but just felt that I did not learn as much new stuff as I wanted to, but instead have progressed well with my consistency and style/flow of my riding. As much as I wanted to learn a bunch of ideas that I have had in my head for a while, I think I got caught up with practicing for the contest season, for better or worse, which is why I am more consistent with my riding than ever before I think. I did do on edit that I was/am very happy with. Made it right before I moved in June, and the footage is all from a one hour session (minus the last clip), and captures the last session that I had in that parking lot after riding there for several years. (Edit attached to end of this post)


A lot has gone down this past year. I am really glad I was able to make it out to all four stops of the North American Am Flatland Circuit, organized by Steve Lapsley, as well as two other events.

Red Bull's Fight with Flight was in Indianapolis, Indiana, and went down January 30th. I had a lot of fun at this contest, did not make the finals (only top three proceeded), but won some cash from Red Bull. It was good to see so many people make the trip out, despite the cold, wintery conditions outside. Dominik Nekolny hated the cold when he came to the Toronto contest the year before, but it was good to see him come out to Indy, and take home third place.

Next up was the Flatland Unlimited (6?) contest in Toronto, Ontario on March 6th. Being the only Canadian contest on the circuit, as well as Canada's biggest annual contest (which I've been supporting for the past 9 years), it was a really good feeling to see how well it was organized, and the amount of support the event received by the sheer number of riders that came out (largest Toronto contest in years I am pretty sure). I ended up making finals (top 5 proceeded), and taking 5th place, the highest I have ranked at the Toronto contest in all my years attending, so I was quite pleased.

After that, JoMoPro went down in Joplin, Missouri on April 10th. Last year's event was the first one they had included flatland, and they set the bar pretty high. These high expectations were not only met, but exceeded. Despite a very questionable call by the judges in pro flatland finals, the event went off amazingly well. Unfortunately, I placed pretty terribly (12th), and rode even worse than that in my opinion. All in all, I had a great time at the event though, and it was the worth the 23h drive (each way) to spend just two days in Joplin.

The last stop of the circuit was August 21st and 22nd, in Dayton/Springboro, Ohio. What made this trip especially difficult and stressful for me was that I was not able to book off the 20th or 23rd, meaning I had to make it to Dayton (12h from Ottawa) and back between Friday at 4pm and Monday at 7am (with a couple hours of sleep to function). While Alex and I were able to make it down in time for the contest to begin on Saturday morning, the weather was not too kind to us, and we were plagued with rain on and off all day. This kept the start of the event to keep getting pushed back later and later throughout the day, to the point where Masters class was supposed to occur on Sunday, when Alex and I would have had to been on the road. Luckily, Pat and Catfish re-organized the schedule for us, and let the Master class run as soon as it dried up on Saturday evening. Again, rode pretty terrible, and placed (higher than I expected) at 9th.

Somehow, across the whole circuit, I was able to acquire enough points throughout the stops to end up in third place in the Masters class for year-end, which surprised me greatly. Again, a big thank you to Steve Lapsley and all the contest organizers that helped out with the first year of the AM Flatland Circuit, which has already made a huge impact on North American flatland in my opinion.

Along with these four events, I also attended the Zero Degrees +1 contest in Whitby, Ontario on February 6th, along with the Joe Mamma contest on September 11th in Ottawa, Ontario. I was really happy to be involved with the second contest, and thankful to Mark Kuhlman, Chris Mclean, Jean-William Prevost, and Alex Poirier who all came out from Hamilton, Kitchener, Montreal, and Petrolia, to help me put on a great event for Ottawa, as well as try to take home some of the $300 cash prize.

Well, that pretty much sums up a lot of the past year in terms of riding and what I've been up to. Apart from that, I have been staying a bit more low-key recently. Traveling less these days, due to my job, but try to make the most of my trips. Partying less, due to lack of interest, but still enjoy having a few drinks with friends. Riding lots, even bought a single speed (non-fixie) bike in the Spring, riding 30km+ daily usually.

Well, that's basically it. Going to try to update the blog (a lot) more regularly, with related and random stuff. For instance, this weekend, Alex and I are meeting up at an ASC jam in Mississauga, Ontario on Sunday, so possibly some photos with a few words up after that, as well as a team edit dropping next week possibly. Stay tuned!

Prasheel Gopal: May 28, 2010 from Pralex Gorier on Vimeo.