After much pondering, on the 27th November 2008 I walked out of a store on Albert Road here in Southsea and decided to start a website. I wanted something basic to begin with to learn online posting, something that was all new to me at the time…. the Flatmattersonline blogspot site was born, Flatmatters had out grown it’s monthly page in Ride UK and it was time for something new that would help the scene. Looking back the first month or so was pretty amazing, all exclusive content.
Ten years on, my first article “To Scuff or not?” is still one of my favourite articles I have done on the site and it’s especially interesting to see where it’s at right now in relation to that article. I wanted to have more writing and depth about flatland online and proud today ten years on today so stay I am contributing what I set out to do. Scroll down on the archives section on the right hand side of the site and have a read when you have a spare moment.
I think my most proudest achievement running the site, is that my initial ethos and theory behind why am I going to this site still runs true ten years on, and has grown over the years.
The initial idea was a simple one, I wanted to wake up everyday and have something for you to look at to motivate you the flatlander at home, no matter where you are in the world to get out riding that day, and I didn’t want to governed by anybody or any company.
Whilst I miss the qualities print has that the internet can never touch, you can’t deny that the internet has brought the world closer together. I can reach so many more people via FM then I ever could making a magazine.
I wanted to do something special to mark 10 years of Flatmattersonline, I realise the website is known for posting riding videos every day, but it’s not often I go behind the scenes and interview the people that inspire me.
So throughout the course of this week I reach out to riders and friends across the globe to ask them a couple of questions, in places some riders have gone on a tangent from what I asked. There are no rules here, I want to celebrate the site and feel pretty proud to be able to help inspire new riders, older riders, seasoned pros, help riders get sponsors, teach kids tricks, there’s always something new happening with the site its pretty mind-blowing to me and helps to grow and branch out in different ways.
I wanted to do something special to mark 10 years of Flatmattersonline, I realise the website is known for posting riding videos every day, but up until now I haven’t talked at all about the people that have inspired me on this journey. So these set of episodes attempts to focus purely on the people that have inspired me, not their riding which we all know every well.
After some brainstorming, I decided I wanted to go away from the riding (which I feature everyday) and dig beneath the surface of the site and ask my inspirations about their thoughts on FM. I reached out to a whole host of people who inspire me in so many different ways, most have responded and a couple not which is disappointing, but I kind of expected that to happen.
I asked the following questions:
What would you say over ten years is Flatmattersonline biggest contribution to the sport?
When you think of Flatmattersonline what do you think of?
What was your first memory of Flatmattersonline?
My next thought as I was sending emails out to riders, was to have exclusive content every day for an entire week. And go back to how I started FM ten years ago pretty much. Sometimes I feel I go away from that, with the daily demands of “edit, edit,”. It’s time for me to shut up, grab a cuppa and reflect on 10 years of running Flatmattersonline.
You all make flatmatters what it is, so I thank all of you who are tuning in. It’s been a lot of work keeping the site going, 15,490 posts later we are here celebrating our tenth anniversary!
Here’s to ten more, I hope you all enjoy the Ten Years of Flatmattersonline episodes…
James McGraw invited me over to judge the Battle in the Rockies 2017, Round 5 in the 2017 AFA series who better to interview for the FM “Catching Up series than the man behind the BITR contest and the return of the AFA series than James McGraw. You definitely want to tune in and listen to this one, this is possibly my favourite catching up yet.
00:31: History on Battle in the Rockies, introducing the video contest as a chance to compete at the event no matter where you are in the word.
1:21: Has James original intention with organising BITR stayed the same four years on?
2:58: Bringing the AFA Back for the flatland scene, what was James intention in doing so?
6:07: What is a successful flatland contest for James?
9:16: How long has James competed for, and his fondest memories looking back over the years?
10:15: James was the first rider to do a backwards bar ride in a contest.
12:01: Moto Sasaki couldn’t make it to this years event after winning the free ticket last year, how did you arrive at inviting Mates Tucek to Colorado?
14:51: Plans for the AFA and BITR in 2018?
19:28: Behind every event there’s always a ton of people working to make the event happen, who are some of the people that help you out and deserve some recognition?
Did you listen to the Martti Kuoppa podcast by Scott O’Brien yesterday? The 2017 Master of Creativity finals went off with such high standard from all the finalists, featuring Joe Cicman, Harutada Shimoyama, Tomoaki Yoshimura, Romain Dodelier, Mateus Beckmann, and Will Redd! So many great styles brought to the game, thank you flatland!
It’s time to announce the 2016 Flatmattersonline Year End Awards! Congratulations to all the winners, and also nominees! Plenty of you voted again this year in all seven categories, making it uber tight in some categories! I will be catching up with the winners over the next week for address details, and for interviews during the next few months.
Whilst I was going through the months via the Lookback features on the site it became apparent to me that one rider in particular unselfishly took himself out of the running for the World Circuit title in order to help make our sport more credible, whilst also throwing down an incredible edit and placing well at so many events throughout the year. Not forget his running his brand as well, so like last year as I hinted when I announced the awards, there is an extra category!
Thank you once again to everyone that voted, let’s make 2017 another great year for Flatland!
Effraim Catlow – Flatmattersonline
We start the month of October with an amazing edit!!!
It feels like I have given out the Must Watch tag a lot recently, it’s already been quite a week for progressive edits and today Joe Cicman’s new Curriculum Vitae 2016 certainly lives up to the hype he’s thrown at it! Curriculum Vitae 2016 documents Joe’s progressive journey as he has pushed his riding month to month working on new ideas for the Master of Creativity confine contest.
The edit really builds from June, and the format quickly going month to month really makes this easy on the eye! Joe has really pushed the Jaffa Whip concept to new levels and the banger what Joe is calling the “Terradoom” at 2:17: a no handed crackpacker no handed jump to no handed backyard is absolutely bonkers and ballsy to say the least! I will stick my neck out and say that is one of the moves of the year so far! This left me wanting more, as all great edits do. Thank you Joe you just pushed flatland up a few notches!
I dropped the 2016 Flatmattersonline year end awards just a few days ago, thank you to everyone who has already voted.Today I begin the task of going through the entire year and seeing what went down. In order to keep this as concise as possible, I will posting just what has happened in 2016. (In January there were a lot of edits posted from the previous year…)
Effraim Catlow/Flatmatters Online
2016 really kicked off with the Quest BMX Sponsor Me contest, with a whole load of quality entries form across the globe arriving, in the end Jeremy Brosset and Gurvan le’ Brok won the competition and place on the team. Refresh your memories and take a look at their entries right here:
So many beautiful moments captured by JMK films from the 2015 Real City Spin contest in Montreal, Canada! This whets the appetite nicely for this years event which is happening on August 27-28th. But for now take a few minutes of your day to watch this amazing edit!
The annual Toronto contest is around a month away, book your tickets now for what is widely regarded as the curtain raiser for the international contest scene each year! Thanks to Joe Cicman for putting together this hype edit for the event organised by the Canadian Freestyle Organisation, this year the event had a rebrand and is now called Maple Vibes. Jean William Prevost has taken the win in Toronto three years in a row, can he make it a 4peat?
The TerraDome Sports Science Research Centre is proud to present the 2015 year-end update featuring contributions from resident and adjunct researchers: Phil Brunet, Todd Carter, James McGraw, Joe Cicman and a surprise guest. All the TD crew come through with some amazing riding, look out for Joe’s ender at 5:51! So good!