Flatland Australia Interview: Clint Millar on Colony and flatland

Clint Millar stands in what could be an awesome riding spot (photo: Colony BMX website)

Last week’s news that Colony BMX would no longer be making flatland products was greeted with sadness but little surprise.

Whilst it might seem like the few short lines of Colony’s statement came as a snap decision, it was a long process that led company boss Clint Millar to pull the pin.

“It had been going on for a good 18 months at least, maybe even two years, it’s been a long thing,” says Millar, “I kept pushing Taiwan ‘come on, make this’ but it just got to a point where it was time and effort that could be spent on other areas of the business”.

The pressures of making and selling flatland products are two fold.

On one side you have the Taiwanese factories that deal in big numbers of product and are unwilling to put through the low volumes generated by flatland sales.

“I don’t know how any flatland company can survive, they didn’t want to do our stuff even though we’re doing heaps of other stuff, it just got to the point where Taiwan was reluctant to produce our numbers” says Millar.

Coming from the other angle there are the low number of sales of flatland products.

“I would have had to order two years ahead and that was too much of a risk with the way BMX changes, you just don’t know where it’s going to be in two years”, says Millar.

But he stands firm on suggestions that the near exclusivity of sales through Newcircle was bad for the flatland line.

“Stores never asked for it or if I stocked it they never ordered it, we directed people through to Newcircle and Shane was doing his business at the time and for him to have any chance he had to get as much through his doors as possible” says Millar.

Clint works the peg and front wheel, something he’s known to do on the flat as well (photo: Colony BMX website)

The closure of Colony’s flatland line also ends their need to market at flatlanders via sponsorship of events and riders.

Yet Millar remains optimistic on Colony’s involvement in flatland.

“No one has hit me up with ‘hey, there’s a Downunder Ground next week, can you help out?’, I probably will, but when someone comes to me with an event I’ll take it case by case” says Millar.

Current team riders Simon O’Brien, Shane Badman and Shintaro Misawa will continue to get support from Colony, with Misawa riding the Sweet Tooth frame.

“We’ll still support them till the day they don’t want to be supported” says Millar.

It has to be remembered that Colony isn’t a charity, it’s a commercial brand that puts food on the table for a number people.

The truth is that the Colony flatland line wasn’t making money, it wasn’t loosing money but it wasn’t making it either.

“It just became to much effort for not enough reward basically, we tried things to boost that but didn’t see progression”.

Joel Clarke becomes a dad

Joel Clarke is starting his own flatland crew (photo: Facebook)

Perth (and former Melbourne) rider Joel Clarke has become a dad for the first time.

In a message sent through through to Flatland Australia, Joel says:

“My wife Claire and I are thrilled to announce the safe arrival of our son, Thomas. He came into the world a little earlier than expected and was born Tuesday 11th September 2012.

Both mum and bubs are doing well, we are both unbelievably happy!

Cheers flatlandaustralia!

Joel C”

Joel riding in Perth just before the arrival of his first child (photo: BMXflatlandaustralia)

Focalpoint 29 out now

Focalpoint BMX Zine, back when it was more than just ones and zeros.

The latest edition of Focalpoint has just dropped.

It’s the second totally digital edition of the mag.

As a result you can pick it up at your local internet café or if you’re fancy enough to have your own net connection, check out their website (when they post it there, which they are yet to do – try the source link until then).

Sourced: Colony BMX

NORA Cup snubs Aussies, AGAIN!

It’s been awhile since Simon was a NORA Cup nominee.

The nominees for the 2012 NORA Cup “Number One Flatlander” award have been announced.

They are:

Matthias Dandois
Viki Gomez
Alex Jumelin
Dominik Nekolny
Yohei Uchino

If you’re into the sycophantic, which industry award nights always are, you can follow all the action on the NORA Cup page.

Personally I’d rather watch this video of Rowan Atkinson showing us all what award nights could be like.

Sourced: Ride BMX

Colony drops flatland program

The Colony Cube – get one whist you can because there will be no more (image: FlatlandFuel.com)

Colony BMX has announced an end to its flatland program.

In a statement posted on the company’s website the Australian BMX brand noted unsustainability as a reason for the move.

“Through our strong position within BMX as a whole we have been able to support this for some time but at some point we needed the flatland program to support itself”, says Clint Millar, Colony Guvnor.

“Unfortunately this has not been the case & after much deliberation & sadness we have had to pull the plug”, says Millar.

It’s not all bad though, long time team riders Simon O’Brien, Shane Badman and Shintaro Misawa will still be supported.

The move is another blow for flatland in Australia, which is still feeling the loss Newcircle only a few months ago.


Ben Moran does that with pegs © Red Bull Media House

The Red Bull Circle of Balance (COB) has come and gone. I didn’t go, but I did watch it via the live stream. Consider this a post-mortem from afar.

But first off, let me just give a big shout-out to Terry Adam’s wife.

On show were the good, the bad and the steezy of flatland.

I’m a big fan of the COB idea. It’s held my imagination ever since the first event in 2002 when it took place in a steezy old gasworks somewhere Germany.

Back then Simon O’Brien’s backwards half-packer kick flip was only out done by Paul Osicka’s subsequent flip-out.

But forget the long ago, the middle school, now it’s all about the steezy.

The Circle of Balance format still works, even if I find the idea of a guy running no pegs up against eleven others who are, a little steezy.

“Shut-up about my wife” yells Terry Adams © Red Bull Media House

The live stream worked really well. It was nice to settle down with a pot of tea, some freshly made shortbread and steezy about on a Saturday night watching flatland on the telly.

It looked awesome even if it did have that Iron Chef feel to the camera work and the guy pushing the buttons seemed to have a thing for steezy ass shots.

When Terry Adams (big shout out to his wife) took to the commentator’s mic and dropped good-humoured zinger after zinger right after being eliminated, the event stepped to another level. It just shows why he’s still the steezy poster boy for flatland in my opinion.

And then there’s Effraim, I think he did an okay job calling the event for the live stream. But honestly, some of his pointless babble seemed to be more like noise pollution (and I’d know about that). He could be a steazy commentator should the sport go in that steezy direction, but he’ll need to steezy up on his steezy filler.

The riding was, as always, steezy but top-notch. Speaking of top notch, just wanna send a shout out to Vanessa, Terry’s wife.

Oh yeah, Jorge won © Red Bull Media House

Picking a winner always going to be hard, even if you automatically discount George Manos and his steezy pegless riding.

The right people made the final and as for the winner, I think any of them could have been top steezy on the day.

Also my life goal is to now ride so hard that I can make it in the next COB with the hope that Steezy Scott O’Brien will fly-kick me in the head after I drop a huge combo.

Lastly, a Huge shout-out to Terry’s wife, Vanessa.