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ECMC Milan, by Nacho Tapia

If there is one thing that we are really pleased with, is how far we have come with RAW Cycling Mag, it is the friendships, experiences and new connections have been collecting during all this time.

One such good friends, is what we have with the guys from The Roosters, MadCity Rides and MM Madrid, a real pleasure to meet them and continue to enjoy experiences together.

This time, Nacho Tapia (The Roosters) and a small group of friends, went to ECMC this year on behalf of the group of national bike-messengers. From our side we’ve thought interesting to share this great weekend with all our readers.

Last 28th of May began the ECMC (European Cycle Messenger Championship), this time in Milan. A week-end hard to explain by the large number of events that were organized, few days of non-stop!

We started on Thursday to look for people who came from the PRE-ECMC, Basel – Milano crossing the Alps, they told us incredible experiences to be honest, crossing the San Gottardo and riding more than 600 km that separate the two cities. That same day they waited us goldsprints and the Welcome Party, it was certainly the most relaxed day of all and it helped us to introduce ourselves to the other participants.

Now comes the good part! Friday 28th, after registering and pick up the number for the race on Saturday, we went direct to the Vigorelli Velodrome, where was the welcome party organized by Oakley in collaboration with the sponsors of the ECMC.

And now, we register to ride the alleycat that come out from there, riding with people from all over the world through the streets of Milan, more than 200 people! Name as Chas Christiansen, Austin Horse, Andrea Schilirò, among other mythic European messengers as Ivan Lapausa, Batiste, Beni, Martin etc.

The race was held by the Milan City Centre. We take it in stride to take advantage and get to know the city, we were riding in a group with several messengers. And after an hour we returned to the velodrome to start the Welcome Party.

Saturday 29th: They started the qualify for Sunday’s final, a closed circuit with 15 checkpoints, where we have to pick up and seal according to each manifest, more directions, more possibilities you have to qualify, totally we had an hour and a half to make it as best as possible. The circuit had all kinds of barriers: ramps, stairs where you had to get off the bike etc.

After qualify they prepared an alleycat for those who still want more; only 100 people participated because if you were not from Milan it’s complicated! We got the manifest and once ready we went in a group of 20 that several Italian guided us, after one hour and getting lost in the last checkpoint, I finished 23rd, a result which I felt quite happy. As for details of the race and driving, they respect enough when they see 20 crazy riders riding to a crossroads lol … the bad part of town, the cobblestones and tram tracks. Some scare situation happened but, in that sense, our bikes responded very well in terms of maneuver and wandering.

Sunday 30th: after recover from the hangover from Saturday night, today it plans a riding of 3 hours for those who were qualified. Those had to pedal a lot! The winner, our friend Austin Horse; he finished in 3 hours and 7 minutes by completing a total of 7 manifest! Austin came to win a few months ago the messengers world championship which took place in Australia, he is amazing!

To end the day a skid competition, a round of beer, back to the camping for taking a shower and go direct to the awards ceremony in which, while we were waiting we saw everything, Trackstand competition, push-ups, naked people dancing, challenge legs … And everything that you could guess!

Four days full of action and bikes that I could hardly forget.

The ECMC 2016 will be in Copenhagen and CMWC2016 in Paris, certainly, I will be there!

I would like to thank the low cost airline that left our bikes in Milan! Ha ha ha … Luckily Martucci helped us to find a place to keep bikes (thank you very much!), to Matteo and all the team for organizing the ECMC in Milan and keep bikes in UBM Courieri and to Cueva Bikes, Taidai, Santa Fixie, Arnette, Arrueda, Bolero Meatballs y MadCity Rides!

Great moments with los Mutants from Madrid, with Levi of CMH, with Michel, Batiste, Jiann, Jorge and Austin who the night before told us perfectly how we should ride to do our best!

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