Bicycle messengers (also known as bike or cycle couriers) are people who work for courier companies (also known as messenger companies) carrying and delivering items by bicycle. Bicycle messengers are most often found in the central business districts of metropolitan areas. Courier companies use bike messengers because bicycle travel is less subject to unexpected holdups in city traffic jams, and is not deterred by parking limitations, fees or fines in high density development that can hinder or prevent delivery by motor vehicle, thereby offering a predictable delivery time.
Copenhagen, the City of Cyclists, is proud to host the 21st annual European Cycle Messenger Championships. Messengers from around the world will converge on Copenhagen for a celebration of the vibrant global courier community and wider urban cycling culture. 40€ early-bird registration is now OPEN: ecmc2016.com/registration
Hey mess family!
It has been ages since we posted anything on here and thats about to change! Going forward I am going to endeavour to post wayyyyy more often on here, everything from upcoming events to issues that affect us as a community.
In order to make this more exciting I would like to reach out to the community as a whole and ask for submissions. If you have a race coming up please shoot me an email with the info you’d like shared along with any artwork and Ill post it straight away! If you attended a race, or event and want to write a few lines about how rad it was please do so and send it along and I’ll make sure to share it. The same goes for any topic that you think needs to be shared or talked about…send it in!
So much has happened in and to our global mess fam in the past year…. we have sadly lost an unprecedented number of our friends recently and if there is one thing to take away from these terrible losses is the strength of the bond we all share. I have seen a huge outpouring of love and support for those close to the ones we have lost. This is one of the things that makes our family so damn special. Lets continue to be there for each other, in good times and in tough times.
Ride In Peace
There have been some really amazing developments this year too… like the founding of the WBMA, ~Womens Bike Messenger Association!! The idea was born in Melbourne during CMWC this year and the WBMA had its first official meeting at Denver NACCC! There was a huge turn out of amazing, strong and empowered women and I am proud to stand beside them! The WBMA gives us an incredible opportunity to combine our voices and really be heard and to make a difference in our community.
If you’d like to join the WBMA please email:
or get in touch through the Facebook Group
In case you were questioning if a group like this is really necessary you just need to check out the tasteless and sexist post made by Chrome Industries yesterday on their Instagram account, and the incredibly well thought out and articulated response from the WBMA. THIS is one of the many reasons that the WBMA is so welcomed and needed.
* I am hoping that someone more eloquent than me will step up and do a more in-depth report on CMWC but I can briefly say that it was an amazing time!
The Pre-Event in Sydney was so much fun! We saw all the sites during some super fun alleycats and rides. Team Footdown and Team scavenger hunts saw us divided into “gangs” Yabos, Westies and Bogans, complete with gang shirts,quickly turned into cut off flannels!
The group ride was, for lack of a better word, EPIC!. We were prepared for “gentle rolling hills along the coast” What we got was intense, pedal grinding climbs and sometimes terrifying descents along the headlands of the east coast of Australia. The (dead) wildlife was plentiful as were the amazing views. We biked through 5 or 6 national parks and camped in a couple. The food and beer was free and plentiful for the whole group ride ensuring that many “bonnets were popped” around the campfire each night.
We finally pulled into Melbourne on a chilly morning about 5am and were met by a crew of locals and those out of towners who had already arrived directly to Melbourne. We all dropped our bags at our respective housing spots and headed to the Brunswick Velodrome for some exciting track racing and my introduction to Track Cross(?).
As I sit here and reminisce about the whole trip I am slightly amazed at how much it is all one big happy blur! Might have been all the Coopers!! The Main Race took place in a beautiful part of the city right along the harbour and from all accounts was a great and well run race. There was a large vendor area where bike business shared their products and services. The BMEF/LCEF had a booth and thanks to the support of our large community we raised a couple thousand dollars for the Funds. <3
Another exciting development that came out of discussions at the Open Forum was the desire to create a Pacific Rim Championships in addition to the NACCC, ECMC, and CMWC. This new CMC would include Australia, and NewZealand as well as Singapore, Malaysia, China, Indonesia, Taiwan, Japan, Philippines South Korea, etc… There are so many countries that are home to many bike messengers that are just not aware of our global mess family and we are trying to change that.
*please send in any pics/words about ECMC!
The ECMC in Milan was preceded by an absolutely mind-blowing pre-event and group ride from Basel, Switzerland. We were treated to 3 days and nights of good food and fun times on our bikes. The Swiss really know how to organize and if you’ve ever had the pleasure of attending a Swiss organized messenger event you may have a slight idea of how incredible the pre-event and group ride was! The ride was fully supported and myself and Mischka along with anyone and everyone we asked to help, ensured that there was enough food each meal to feed 120+ starving messengers. Highlights of the trip included a fun night in Zurich, being hosted by an amazing family at a farm in the country, camping in the freezing rain in Andermatt, the ride over the Gottard Pass that saw temperatures below freezing before a 60km decent into Locarno where the temperatures were above 30c (90f) and of course the pilgrimage to see Madona Del Ghisallo the patron Saint of Italian cycling
After paying our respects we headed downhill into Milano! And what a welcome it was! The Italians showed us lots of love and reuniting with our messfam was, as always, bellissimo!
We were treated to a party at the famous, historical Velodromo Vigorelli! It was built in 1935 and although it no longer hosts track events it is still open and hosts other sporting events. What a beautiful piece of history!
The food was phenomenal as was the espresso. Everyone suddenly “spoke” italian….basically we all just faked a fun Italian accent and spoke in the only Italian words we knew…. “Espresso! Fussili! Linguini!” You get the picture!
The Open Forum saw Copenhagen, Prague and Vienna put in exuberant bids to host ECMC 2016 and in the end Copenhagen won! I will be sure to post more info as it comes in but keep your summer travel calendar wide open as there are plans to have 4-5 weeks of Pre-event->ECMC Copenhagen->Post-event->Pre-event Cologne->CMWC Paris!
*if someone wants to write something up about NACCC this year, that would be fantastic.
The Mile High City certainly showed us a great time! The weather was perfect, the beer and weed were plentiful as was the amazing riding. There was only a small crew of organizers in Denver but that didn’t stop them from throwing an incredible and well planned out NACCC. The qualifiers were held in an industrial area that had very little traffic and everything went off without a hitch. There was some issue with the number of ladies put through to the finals which was rectified when brought to the attention of the organizers. After the results of who would go through to the finals were announced it was also announced that the Finals would be held in open traffic around the city of Denver. This created quite a bit of controversy and this topic is one that I think will be discussed more in the near future. (If someone could write something up on this… great!) After much discussion and a small protest/moment of silence the race got underway. It was a gruelling 4 hours in sweltering heat at a 5,280 ft or 1,610 m elevation. In the end Kelly Pennington from Montreal and Austin Horse from NYC were crowned the 2015 NACCC Champions! Congrats to you both!
This years Open Forum had Baltimore, LA and Milwaukee all putting in bids to host NACCC 2017. We used the ballot system of voting again this CMC and it went smoothly again. Many people expressed their appreciation for the newer system as it allowed them to vote with their heart and not due to peer pressure. The system is a simple one and only has 2 requirements of voters..
1) you must be a working or ex messenger to vote
2) you must have attended a NACCC either this year or last year
The voting is open from the end of the first Open Forum and concludes at the beginning of the Awards Ceremony on Sunday night. You must submit your ballot containing your name, race number and the city you’d like to vote for. If you are attending the event but did not register you must come and see me and Ill simply add your name to the list of voters. You DO NOT need to be registered in order to cast a vote. I do my best over the weekend to find each and every person and ensure that they have cast a vote but the onus lies with you to find me -not a hard task!- and submit your ballot. The system is very transparent and accountable. Each vote is cross checked with a master list and in the event of any concern to do with the voting, each vote can be verified. As always we are open to suggestions and are eager to discuss any improvements.
Lastly a quick update on the BMEF..
Each year we receive more and more requests for assistance from the BMEF and this year is no exception. We have paid out over $10,000 this year to messengers who were injured on the job. Annual fundraisers like MAYDAY, and The MarioKart Krit are crucial to the ongoing ability for the BMEF to help when needed. Please consider throwing a BMEF fundraiser in your city. Every dollar helps! It can be a race, a poker night, a movie night, a band show, etc! Get creative!
The BMEF is also selling merchandise to help raise both funds and awareness. We currently have available:
Patches (white or black)-$5
AssSaver Fender $5
If you would like to order any BMEF merchandise please send me an email here or hit me up on Facebook here and Ill get you all set up! You can also “like” us on Facebook here and check out our website here
Thats all for now but please get in touch with me and let me know what you’d like to see more of on here! Share pics, words, fliers etc.
See you soon!
A big thanks to Vern Schleyer ~CMWC 2012 Chicago organizer~ for giving us his take on the awesome happenings in Minneapolis during the NACCC’s this year!
8/28/14- Made it across NE Minneapolis in like nine minutes and found Gabe and Six at Holmes Park. Finally put a name to a face with Altan Gurel. We rode out. And rode and rode. It was a fun ride on a cloudy windless day but I was hurting, hung over and thirsty as fuck.
It was the first all wood track I had ever saw, and it was gorgeous. I met none of the requirements to race, including cardiovascular fitness, so after a very weak gyro and a trip to Office Depot I made my way to the stands. Leah, Stu and Matt were already there, among fifteen or twenty other people. and we yelled foul jokes about and to Erica while seated next to her parents. The racing was beautiful but cut short by the weather. I caught a ride back to the city with Sarah and Jennie and Gabe. Parts of the trip did not consist of wrong turns. I would have gotten naked but that bitch made me throw out my wizard staff- Ralph Stout, 8/31/14. I ran into Kayla on the way to register. She seemed remarkably well rested and sane for an organizer. Every part of this event was well executed. Finally found Joel and Augie in the parking lot of Peace coffee, and ate a kick ass BBQ meal. Joel and Augie and Sam and I rode to start the poker run, but we are old, and funny looking, and lazy. We ended up drinking beer on some huge suspension bridge near the greenway instead. It was a fine night. Zalen and Wallace and Brunnelle and a bunch of others drifted by, and resulted in as fine a buzz as I’ve had in the Twins.
8/29/14– I tried to sleep in but the city was cutting down a massive tree outside of the house and it was more than a bit distracting. Rode to a diner in the rain. Extraordinarily wet. Went to Weismann Museum of Art, on the University of Minnesota campus. It was pretty good, but was featuring a student curated exhibit, which wasn’t great, because kids are dumb. Left there and crossed the slowly-getting-mighty Mississippi, and went to the Minneapolis Museum of Art. It was fucking outrageous. Similar in approach to the Met in Mew York, I was greatly disappointed that I didn’t have more time to explore it. Rolled over to Alley Cat Cycles, they threw a great party out back in the alley. Ate more, drank more, got rained on more. Spent time with Lucas and Bega, which is an awful lot like getting to meet Waldorf and Statler in person. We were stuck under tents and eaves for quite a while as the rain was no fucking joke, though the Industry Forum seemed like a success. Rode out to a lake with Sticks, one of the organizers focus’ was to make swimming available every single day. It was a fine idea.
8/30/14 – Qualifier – Went to course and it’s gorgeous. Flat. Limited gravel. Closed. Nice. Racers were set loose in groups of five, every five minutes. Unofficial total is around 200 paid riders. Free coffee at the course for those up early enough. It was a very good thing. Day passed slowly. I had most of my shit spread out of the blacktop to dry, eager to ride but not in a rush to race. I finally got moving, and rode the qualifier around maybe two p.m. Felt great, flew around the course, hit thirteen tags, mostly of decent value, and was thrilled with the course and the race overall. Remarkably fun. Possibly the greatest development in racing history came with the advent of the Blazer buck, which were ground scores with Jakes face that actually counted towards your final score. I got one, after someone pointed it out, but I figured I’d rather have the keepsake than qualify, so it’s still on my desk at this very moment. It’s hard to imagine what’s lonelier- Ralph’s intervention, or his funeral – Vern, 8/31/14. After the race ended Raul and Brian from Chicago finally showed up, and it was good to see their sloppy asses. I tried to roll out to the beach again but followed Chas and Cris instead, until they got mad that a fairly good sized group of us were incorrectly following them to a drug store or something, then drifted back to NE and went to Luce with Kenny and Will from Chicago, ran into Anna and Robert and the pizza was really good. Next up was the alley party behind One on One Bicycle, where organizers had recreated Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, It was fun to watch Amanda and Cooper knock the living shit out of each other for a few hours, You would think they hadn’t invented violence in New York yet. The free beer and tacos were fantastic too. Dan and Dave from Chicago asked me for life advice, which is a little like trying to take a sip from a fire hydrant. I doubt they will do this again.
8/31/14- Main Race – I felt so great in the qualifier that its difficult to believe that I came in 123rd out of 160 or something, so i assume the race must have been rigged, probably. Main race looked awesome. I showed up later in the day, just rolling around town enjoying the upper upper midwest for a minute before I fell back into the insanity. Race ended, took group pic, got to see Lane yell at everyone because he lost his manifest. May not win most politest courier this year, but what do i know. Open forum was super fun, NYC made a really strong bid, and ultimately surprised the shit out of a lot of people by getting the bid, thereby ruining the long standing tradition of denying New York the bid. Bega and I finished last remaining moments of daylight shooting the shit in a pair of pink lawn chairs, and I’m just sentimental enough to admit it was a peak moment for me, I went to meet an old friend for dinner, and the rain became so fierce that I was stuck at her place and missed the closing ceremony. Austin took first overall, and Teeners snapped up first place woman.
9/1/14 – There was a dead bird in the alley as I left Ginnys this morning, so I texted a picture to Joel as birds make him uncomfortable. And I wished him a nice flight. I was running tight on time but risked a stop at Taco Bell for breakfast, and it was worth it as I made it just in time for the 9 AM bus that left around ten. The parking lot was nuts. Shotgunned beers, bagged wine, and mimosas. No sign of Corey yet, his bus was to arrive from NYC at 6:30 this very same morning. 122 tubers divided between two very crowded buses. People hanging from windows, eating aerosol cheese. Departed. Rode lots of little roads with lots of odd turns all the way to the Cannon River. Well, it’s all over for me, I just puked up blood and a whole pickle. – Ralph Stout, 8/31/14. The Saskatchewan Screamer was there, cheerful as ever but not looking thrilled. He said the water on a good day isn’t very warm, and today is not among the good days. We got there and he was right. The water was like runny ice. It was awful. Lucky as shit, once we got out of the tributary the main section of the river was much much better. Nearly perfect, really.
Drifting and drinking all day is not a bad way to live, and everyone was pretty goddamn thrilled to float in the sun.
9/2/14– Said goodbye to the 20 or 30 people staying at Drews. There’s Corey, asleep on the hardwood. Ouch. Departed, Bostwick in shotgun, running a couple bikes back to Chicago as favors. Somehow lucky enough to make it a really short trip, despite having to go past O’hare at rush hour. It felt weird to be alone, but then Ralph showed up by my house an hour or so later, then alone seemed like a pretty good alternative.
A million thanks to the organizers, and all the locals and volunteers- Minneapolis was fantastic and the whole week was perfectly executed.
Below is a firsthand account of ECMC in Stockholm, the pre-event in Copenhagen and the Viking Quest in between. A big thanks to Simon Busk for writing this for us as well as for the pics.
As always if anyone has a story they’d like to share about an event please send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and Ill be sure to get it up on here!
My name is Simon, they call me Snus or Busken on the streets. I’ve been a messenger in Copenhagen for the last 6-7 years. I’ve been going to championships since 09 and i frequently hashtag my Instagram pictures with #messlife and I believe in keeping my selfiegame strong. Enough about me, let’s talk about the 2014 ECMC’s in Stockholm Sweden. But first let me tell you a little bit about Viking Quest and the Copenhagen messenger scene!
The last couple of years the messenger scene in Copenhagen has been dwindling, a lot of people left the scene as the business was shrinking and working conditions for messengers where being ass-raped by people towing the company line. Most people racing alley cats where media students on carbon bikes and pr consultants on Japanese steel frames. When i got asked to put up a pre-event i thought it would be impossible because of the lack of enthusiasm in the scene. Weed, booze and the amazing spirit of the CWMC’s in Lausanne made everything seem possible so me and Toto teamed up and decided to make shit happen! And boy did shit happen, in the end we got help form everyone in the milieu, old and new, exenger and messenger all pulled together in order for an epic week of drinking and biking with vikings! The infusion of foreign messengers to our little city was GREAT! A much needed vitamin injection for our little scene, the young guys got to see what it’s all about and the old legends could once more bask in the glory of days passed. Again a HUGE thank you going out to everyone who attended the pre-event!
Getting from Copenhagen to Stockholm is roughly a 700km ordeal, and how to make this possible for 60 people was a bit of a hassle, but in the end it all panned out pretty ok. The guy who planned the trip (me) got hospitalized a few days before with blood poisoning and a kidney infection, so some aspects of the trip got fucked up. but in the end most people survived and odin was pleased.
Getting to Sweden was a rough ride for some, rain, hail, thunder, crazy swedish roads and i guess a lot of people where not really ready for surviving on the roads (not bringing water bottles and burners! #messlife!) but for me it was quite easy, i packed my bike up, wrapped it in plastic bags, taped the shit out of it, got up early, smoked a blunt and got on a train. A few hours later i was riding my bike though the insanely beautiful streets of Stockholm. Celebrating the return to my native country, and trying to feed the enthusiasm of being at the ECMC’s, i make my way to the dark heart of Sweden. The systembolaget, one of the reasons i as a young adult decided to flee my country and seek refuge as a messenger on the streets of Copenhagen. As i stand there, in the midst of government oppression i finally find two overpriced and lukewarm cans of beer and i make my way to pay for it. Trying to pay for the alcohol turned out to be a problem as i could not produce any valid picture id. This was going to be a theme for the entire ECMC-weekend, the lack of and price of alcohol! A bit discouraged, i made my way to the HQ to find nothing but smiles, kisses, Swedish mouth tobacco and friends. Things where probably going to be TOTALY EPIC AND KICKASS anyhow! The rest of the thursday was quite slow, we went on a small group ride through the parks and on the bike paths of Stockholm, the ride ended up in a place called Långholmen, one of MANY islands making up the city of Stockholm. The party was quite slow, a 33cl beer was 20kr (roughly 2 euros) and people where mostly sitting around a bonfire.
Hillsprints/Alleycat/Viking Bar friday During the friday the last of the CPH/SF crew arrived, and it seemed like ALOT of people from rest of the world/europe also dropped in. I started the day out working the registration, giving a hand in setting up the out of towner-alley cat and trying to be as helpful as a semi-drunk swede recovering from severe blood poising can be! I can’t tell you much about the hillsprints or the alley cat, the hill sprints was FUCKED UP! We wen’t up the Hammarby backen, which is a ski slope during the winter and a bloody mess of gravel and stones during the summer. Jospehine from swizneyland and Beaver from back home won the whole shebang in the end! I briefly saw Beaver whizz pass me on his way up the mountain. Me, i was on my way down, down in to the hole! A hole filled with VODKA that is! At the end of viking quest we briefly thought we had some money over, during the excitement in not loosing any of our private money on a messenger event. Valtho came up with the idea that we should use the money to buy cheap booze in Copenhagen and bring to Stockholm! Being from
scandinavia, we know what to bring to Stockholm. Without double-checking the balance on the account we proceeded to buy about 37 liters of vodka to give away for free for all the attendants of viking quest. We figured that everyone would be to broke to buy their own booze in Stockholm, and rather then using the leftover money on something for us, we would like to share it with everyone who came to the event. Said and done, as everyone else was racing from Hammarbybacken to Medborgarplatsen dodging cars and running red lights in the out of towner alley cat. I was hauling 16l of vodka and about 20l of disgusting lime soda from one end of town to the other. Riding up and down the hills with all that weight on my back HURT my newly inflamed kidneys AS FUCK, but hoping people would be grateful for the free alcohol was making me push through it.
The out of towner alley cat was fast! Martin from Poland won, together with sauce from florida and another polish guy i cant remember, just behind him Paul from SF, Toto, Valtho and another bunch of beats came in. The alley cat ended in HQ and the party of the night was supposed to be held there. As more and more people where arriving, i was chilling out, trying to recover from hauling all that booze on my back. Again the mood was a little bit reluctant, people where starting to click up. German speaking people grouping with other people speaking angry, the french being the french as usual. You know the deal, you’ve all been to these kind of things before. Sitting quiet on the asphalt i recognized this and thought it would be a great idea to bring out the free booze! We had roughly 16l of 50% vodka 50% disgusting lime soda mixed up in 2l bottles, this should be enough to get the party started… and i guess it was! We held a little speech that no one listened to, and declared the bar open. Drinks was free for everyone attending viking quest and 10kr for everyone who didn’t attend. This being a messenger event of course people where assholes and they where not paying the lousy 10kr for a drink! That’s #messlife for you! As people where starting to black out and drunken fights raged on the dance floor i realized that my mission for the night was fulfilled and i started to make my way home in order to get a few hours of sleep before the qualifications.
Waking up on saturday morning was easy for me who poured drinks instead of drinking them, the race course was situated a few km outside of town on a university campus. I was sweating a lot in the high summer sun as i was making my way out there. The qualifications was scheduled to start at 11, i was in heat 3 and as i rolled up around 11.30 i was getting a bit antsy, thinking i was a bit late for the start. Once i made it up the small hill to race course i realized that Sweden is NOT Switzerland. The course was barely set up, and a lot of my messbros from Stockholm was walking around with stern looks on their faces and sweat coming out of theirs foreheads. I guess we where not starting heat 3 at 12.00, i rolled a jointed and laid down to relax under a tree. Slowly my friends from around the world started showing up, i rode around the course a couple of times and as time drew closer i started getting the jitters. Even though i knew my body felt like a bunch of wet paper bags i still got the tingling butterflies in my stomach, i had to pee three times and my legs where restless. It quickly dawned upon me that it would be a quite quick qualification, every heat would get a different manifest so it would be impossible the judge how you did according on your time, only placing in the heat mattered. I on the other hand had NO plans on qualifying, just being there and not being in a hospital was enough for me. The course was a fun one, most of the checkpoints knew what was up and i really enjoyed riding around the racetrack in a leisurely pace, making smalltalk and having a few beers. The stannous checkpoint was not as bad as they usually are, i guess they where hung over, the basque checkpoint most certainly brought the party! After completing my run, things stayed the same for a few hours. Joints was rolled, people made their run for qualifying and we hung out in the shade. Johannes from Swedish Drinking Team fame was doing a wonderful job MC’ing the event, as his voice got blurrier and blurrier the event slowly decayed down in the ECMC’s of years passed. Things where moving slow and no one really knew what was up. Would there be another alley cat tonight? There was supposed to be side events? And what about the party? Where was that going to be held? Questions was buzzing, and i decided that i was time to get some booze again. I grabbed Beast aka Sonny Boy and he in turned grabbed some guys bike and we set course for the remaining bottles of vodka. Learning from my mistake the previous night, i realized i needed help carrying all this booze, as beast and me where bombing through the empty streets of Stockholm it dawned upon me how much i love the messenger community! They might be a bunch of pretentious cunts with bad tattoos and a highly skewed image of their occupation, but i love doing shit like this! Who else get’s to host a party for a couple of hundred friends you never met before in a foreign country? Well, not cab drivers! Thats for sure! Anyhow me and beast are bombing through Södermalm with our bags filled with booze, the sun is still high in the sky and it should be dark now. The water is blue, the city is stunning and 10k’s away all of our friends are waiting! As we get to the race course, the track stands are about to start, and it’s past 9 in the evening. People are getting a bit antsy, the Copenhagen max ud crew gathers and we start mixing the drinks. As we are pouring the booze, Toto tells me that he talked to Jumbo and that Jumbo mentioned that arm wrestling competitions used to be a staple on messenger events. I think it sounds like a brilliant idea, so we make it happen! People gather around a small pick nick table in the middle of the plaza and shit is about the get down! What happened next was a stormflood of testosterone, friendly competition, national rivalry, enormous feats of strength and all out awesomeness! Men and woman fought epic battles of arm strength and will against each other. Legends was born and stories of brand new heroes was sung in valhalla! In the end Maggie from Stockholm took the womens title and Martin from the ever so epic Team Latvia became the winner of the mens final.
In some way this felt like the climax of the event, people had all raced during the day and now they got a well needed output for the frustrations and triumphs of the day! After the event my voice was properly fucked from screaming so much. I tried to nurse my sore throat with beer, people where slowly moving either back to town for sleeping or out to a techno tent by a lake in the forrest. I chose to get back with Kalle to sleep, but i heard tales of epicness through out the night.
Once again the Stockholm crew was running a bit behind schedule, but during the sunday it wasn’t to bad. I spent the day working the Omnium Cargo checkpoint where i was security, making people put their bikes in the bike parking area and forming straight lines while waiting. When working a checkpoint you loose the oversight of the race, but you do get a chance to get right in to the action. Not long after the Cargo race was on, it stood clear that a few riders was going MUCH faster and working their manifest smarter then the others. Jumbo from Copenhagen was absolutely flying, and behind him Hans from Copenhagen was also riding fast. After them it seemed like Robin from London, Arvid and Andreas from Stockholm was also killing it. Jänis from Latvia was as always a gracious sight on the track! In the end Jumbo took the W after spending about an hour racing for full blast. The main race lasted for three hours and the riders had a multitude of manifests to complete, they all got to choose jobs on the manifest, so trying to figure out who was in the lead was absolutely impossible. The three hours went by in a blur of sweaty bodies, angry screams, crumpled up manifests and running away with peoples bikes. After pushing it REAL hard for three hours in the sun, the race came to an end and it started dawning upon me that this would all come to end tonight. The familiar post-championship lump in my stomach started setting in. Being a couple of hours late, this meant that people actually was getting on the way to the final party quite quick. The final party was situated in a night club down by the water in Södermalm, on the other side of town. The swedish alcohol and drug culture got a brush with the messenger culture, the bouncers of the club was a bit dumbfounded about what to do about all the weed smoking and drinking outside of their establishment. Eventually we got to get in, but all bags had to be searched and no alcohol was allowed on the premises. The mood did not get much better when people found out that despite the Stockholm crew subsidizing the beer with 10000kr, a beer cost 35kr (roughly 3.5 euro). The prize ceremony eventually got underway and Marleke from the Netherlands got a bad ass carbon frame for the ladies race, beaver took the first spot in the mens final and Jojo from the PROUD By-Expressen crew got second place and also fastest working messenger! Quite a day for Copenhagen! Right after Leah announced to votes for the next ECMC (Milan got it!!) we all got kicked out of the venue, the party moved on to a nearby park and i made my way to the car in order to drive all throughout the night back to Copenhagen. Once again a championship was over, this one was an Epic one! The story is the same, so many new and old friends. Friendly and familiar faces, rookies falling asleep with their shoes on. Maxing out and chistoleing under a sky that never gets dark. Swimming, biking and hanging out in one of the most beautiful cities in the world was NOT a bad thing!
The last cheques have come in, the coin has been rolled and counted and the grand total is finally in!
This year was the 5th annual MAYDAY race to benefit the BMEF . We were hoping to raise the most money to date and we did! We raised $7065!!!
This brings our 5 year total funds donated to the BMEF to $20,906.84!!
A huge thank you to everyone that has made the trip to Toronto to support MAYDAY!!
Another big thanks goes to all the awesome locals that race, party, drink, provide floor space, dj equipment, food, party spaces, and anything else that our guests might need to make their weekend awesome.
A third heartfelt thanks goes to the hugely supportive sponsors who together donated over $10,000 in prizes just this year alone!
And the biggest thanks of all goes to the incredible folks that I organize this with, Emily, Mark, Kevin, Jimmy, and Sunny. You guys and gals stepped up when needed, gave up sleep and sanity to make this happen and I look forward to doing it all again next year!
Please like our facebook page so that we can keep you in the loop on the happenings for MAYDAY 6! Mark it on your calendars! May 1-3 2015!
We are trying out a new system this year at CMWC in Mexico City. There has been discussion online and this seems to be the format that everyone likes so when better to test it out then in a couple of weeks. We will be taking all feedback and using it to determine if this was a successful test run of a potentially new voting system being used going forward.
Looking forward to testing out this system. If you have any questions please contact myself, Leah H or Stephanie “Papillon”. Or come with your questions and concerns to the first Open Forum being held from 11am-1pm at Headquarters on Friday May 29th.
Voting At Mexico CMWC 2014
– Bidding host cities will present their bids at the first open
forum on Friday.
– Bidding cities may distribute informational material
through the CMWC HQ, in registration packs, or directly to
– Shortly after final registration closes on Saturday at the
main race qualifying voting will open. Voting will take
place on Saturday and Sunday at the main race and closes
once the main race finals are over.
– To vote you must approach the polling station, located in
the vendors market, with either your race number or other
proof of registration.
– The volunteer at the polling station will instruct you on
how to cast your vote. Each registered racer gets one vote
and once it is cast you will be unable to change or modify
– The CMWC host city for 2016 will be announced at the
prize giving on Sunday night.
Votación en México CMWC 2014
– La ciudades aspirantes a sede presentarán su propuesta en
el primer foro abierto el Viernes.
– Las ciudades aspirantes a sede pueden distribuir material
informativo en el CMWC HQ, en los paquetes de
inscripción, o directamente a los participantes.
– Pronto después de cerrar la inscripción final el Sábado en
las clasificatorias de la carrera principal, se abrirá la
votación. La votación tendrá lugar el Sábado y Domingo
en la carrera principal y se cerrará cuando termine la final
de la carrera principal.
– Para votar deben ir a la caseta de votación, situada en el
mercadillo de vendedores, con su número de corredor u
otra prueba de inscripción.
– Los voluntarios en la caseta de votación les explicarán
como presentar su voto. Cada corredor inscrito dispone
de un voto y una vez presentado no podrán cambiarlo o
– La ciudad sede del CMWC para el 2016 será anunciada en
la ceremonia de premiación del Domingo noche.
CMWC is just around the corner so this is a call out for any and all topics that you’d like to discuss at the open forums in Mexico City. I want to get a solid idea of what should be on the agenda this year. This discussion is also taking place on the messenger mailing list as well as on Facebook here at the IFBMA fb group.
As points get listed and talked about on Facebook and on the mailing list I will also post them here.
TOPICS SUBMITTED SO FAR:
Steph from London has submitted this:
OPEN FORUM AGENDA CMWC MEXICO
PROPOSAL FOR A CHANGE TO THE VOTING SYSTEM OF CMWCs
I have spoken to quite a few people who feel the system is not as good as it could be.
From what i know, the issue has been brought up before and apparently, nothing has been done about it because no one was bothered to do something about it but i could be wrong and there could be other reasons.
Having the 1st open forum at the beginning of the event is fine..people just arrive, they are fresh and ready to listen..so once the agenda has been brought up and discussed, get the bidding cities to do their thing..bidding cities should have some materials that people can look at through the event so whoever wasn’t at the 1st open forum can catch up and people can look through the materials over the weekend.
The 2nd forum should ideally be on Sunday. On Monday,most people are either gone or too fucked to attend so it doesn’t make sense to vote then.
It could be argued that people who are serious about voting should arrange their trip to stay until then but the reality is that people don’t/can’t stay on Monday (especially if the CMWC is in Europe, countries are closer, people head back Sunday night/Monday morning) so we should accommodate that and have the second open forum on Sunday…
The time when the main race finals are done and before the prize giving, when people are chilling and before the big party, would be ideal to get the bidding cities on stage again and remind people it’s time to vote and give them a deadline to do so.
Depending on logistics, there could be a couple of volunteers manning a ballot box for a few hours at the end of the day so participants have plenty of time to vote. Make it simple, give your rider’s name/number, one ballot paper, write the city you’re voting for and cast your vote.
We need to make sure this is done thoroughly so have a list of all registered participants and once they have voted, cross their names.
During the prize giving, someone would be counting the votes..IFBMA council members maybe, as organisers will be fairly busy and the winning city would be announced once the prize giving is over and before the party start.
People would be told in advance (ie on the website of the next CMWC organiser if this proposal goes through) that the voting system has changed and what it involves.
Scooter (Scott Vercoe) from Melbourne, Australia posted the following on fb:
CMWC Voting System.
It was 10 years ago I put in a bid for Sydney and took the Worlds out of the traditional Europe/North America cycle and was on the IFBMA council. I still think the way we did it back then can’t be beat.
2 years out from the year you plan to host CMWC you put in a proposal to host the worlds. Everyone can put in a proposal. This is done at the 2nd open forum of that years CMWC.
1 year out, intending host cities’ bids are voted on. This is done at the first open forum of that year. Cities can only present a bid if they had put in a proposal the year before.
The biggest advantage of this way is that you can vote for the hosting city in the first open forum.
The first thing that happens at any committee meeting is urgent business. And if voting for host cities isn’t the urgent business of an open forum at a CMWC, I don’t what is.
This also allows for everyone to celebrate the winning city throughout the event.
Trying to vote for host cities at the 2nd open forum where everyone is bent out of shape after racing and partying doesn’t make any sense to me. In my experience, only the keen ones attend the 2nd open forum. And with this system you can have it on a Monday.
I don’t think the IFBMA can start telling host cities when they need to hold an open forum. It’s dangerous ground in mandating a schedule for a CMWC.
That’s my thoughts. I’m gonna go check that the lids on my bottles of back in my day rants haven’t shaken loose.
Keep it real, kids.
From Matteo in Milan:
It would be interesting if we allowed the cities that wish to apply for the CMWC to send via email 1 month before the start of their event a detailed presentation of the event, enablaling those who wish to read the presentation the possibility to download it.
It would also be useful to assign a point system to the presentations, thus facilitating those who vote.
Obviously these presentations will be used during the open forum.
From Andy Zalen in DC
Keep the initial Open Forum, but forget the 2nd one altogether.
Instead, at the start of the Awards Ceremony, all bidding cities get up and
make one last, brief presentation to win over undecided voters. All
registered participants get a numbered ballot slip (same as their race
number) in their registration packet. A ballot box is made available
beginning at the end of the initial Open Forum until the end of the Awards
Ceremony – people have until then to cast their vote. Or more specifically,
make it say, 15 minutes after the final presentations, so that the votes
can be tallied and announced by the end of the Awards Ceremony (votes may
be tallied as they are cast during the weekend, so that it doesn’t all have
to get counted at the Awards Ceremony). No proxy votes, just one available
vote per attendee that they have to personally submit.
To take that idea even further, the ballots could be accompanied with the
Open Forum agenda items which need to be decided on. This addendum could be
created at or after the Open Forum and distributed later that evening
and/or during the course of the rest of the event. Again – only one ballot
per racer. So often the Open Forums get bogged down in heated debate. If we
eliminated the need to come up with “the answers” – voting on the issues,
voting on if we should vote, etc. – the Open Forums would just be about
raising the questions and concerns, and offering possible solutions.
Perhaps this would make the Open Forum run smoother and more efficiently,
and we could be more satisfied we gave all attendees a fair and equal
chance to exercise their opinions.
I’m pretty sure we abandoned the consensus method soon after Buffalo Bill
stopped attending, but I don’t know if the by-laws were ever amended to
reflect this. It’s been a straight majority rules vote for many years now.
I am also pretty sure that the by-laws were amended to allow for the IFBMA
council to take decisions amongst themselves on certain matters during the year, outside of an actual CMWC. If not, there must be a provision for
this, in the case that some timely issue comes up that needs to be
addressed before the next Championships.
I have some other ideas but that’s all for now.
From Bega in DC
On several occasions, the 2nd open forum has been scheduled for sunday
but on at least some of those occasions hasn’t successfully happened
for various reasons such as lack of organization or lack of interest
or people being already drunk or the finals ran late and the forum was
scheduled for a time when the bunny hop was still going on and thats
not really fair. and thus the forum has been suddenly moved to some
other unplanned time and location. it is my belief that if it is
scheduled for sunday, it should happen for real on sunday.
its not really supposed to be a “vote”. its supposed to be a consensus
(which is not the same thing as a unanimous decision – consensus means
that no one wishes to block the decision which means everyone accepts
the “vote” not necessarily agrees with it – it rarely happens after
only one vote). at least as recently as chicago, a motion was made to
change it from consensus to a straight vote but that proposal was
tabled and has been tabled at at least 3 open forums that i remember.
i would suggest that it has gained more headway recently, and at least
a couple of times, the vote has been taken this way as a single vote,
not necessarily for the worse at those forums. truthfully if at least
most people walk away thinking it was at least somewhat fair, youve
done at least somewhat of a good job.
proxies should be eliminated. whenever you have the forum, people who
want to participate should show up. at different forums, proxies have
been treated differently with little if any consistency. proxies dont
function in a consensus format. they barely work in a voting format.
they cause controversy and breed uninformed and uncaring voters.
im really excited to see people having these sorts of conversations.
ive always personally believed that having the conversation is more
important than the final decisions.
Shawn “bega” Blumenfeld
Please discuss! and if you have anything you’d like to have talked about at the Open Forums please post on fb, on the messenger mailing list, or send me an email to email@example.com and I’ll get it up for everyone to see.
Hope to see everyone there!
Its just what you’ve all been waiting for! Now you can sport your very own BMEF hoodie, cycling cap and tshirt! Patches, pins and stickers also available. Better pics coming soon but for now you can see some here.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to place your order.
**Cycling jerseys coming soon!!**
The first weekend in May 2014 marks the 5th anniversary of MAYDAY in Toronto. This event began as a small fundraiser for the BMEF (Bicycle Messenger Emergency Fund) and quickly grew into the largest single supporter of the BMEF. As a direct result of the money raised at MAYDAY, the BMEF was able to raise the amount of assistance paid out to an injured messenger from $300 to $500. To date MAYDAY has raised over $14,000 for the fund and hopes to surpass the $20,000 mark this year!
The organizers have gathered together thousands of dollars in prizes from some really amazing sponsors (AllCity, Abus, Bern, Bikurious, Cogswell Bicycles, Coupe Bizzare, Cycle Solutions, Detroit Bikes, Hoopdriver, Knog, LaBicicletta, My Little Bike Shop, Nice Rack, Passage Tattoo, Regal Bicycle, SendIt, Sweet Petes, The Bike Joint, Trash Bags, UML, Vans, Velocity, and more!) Most of those prizes are to be raffled off in the new format raffle this year! There are great parties each night, lots of delicious food and the best part is that the whole weekend is a fundraiser so you can still feel good about yourself on monday morning when you wake up with no underwear, a drawing of a penis on your forehead and no money in your pockets….because hey, it was all for charity!
For more info you can check out the Facebook event here:
And to donate directly to the BMEF please click here
SEE YOU SOON!!
The International Federation of Bike Messenger Associations (IFBMA) is pleased to announce that Toronto bike messenger Leah Hollinsworth has been awarded the 2013 “Markus Cook Memorial Award” (MCA) for Services to the International Messenger Community.
The IFBMA has awarded the Markus Cook Award (MCA) since 1998 to the person who has inspired and empowered the wider messenger community, and who puts all messengers before themselves.
Leah is the fifth Toronto messenger to receive the Markus Cook Award. Leah has been an important member of the messenger community for almost fifteen years. She is a community builder, race organizer and dedicated fundraiser. She works with a team of Toronto couriers to organize holiday Christmas dinners and local fundraisers to send messengers to world championships in far away cities. She has organized legendary races such Global Gutz and the 2008 Cycle Messenger World Championships.
Perhaps Leah’s greatest contribution is as the Director of the Bicycle Messenger Emergency Fund (BMEF): “The Bicycle Messenger Emergency Fund is a 501 c3 nonprofit public charity organization that provides emergency compensation to bicycle messengers who are hurt on the job. Currently the BMEF allocates a $500 emergency cheque to help messengers anywhere in the world during the first week of injury. This provides a boost, to both the financial and the mental/emotional state of the injured messenger. The goal is to help the injured cope and recover.” The BMEF help messengers anywhere in the world and is entirely funded by donations.
In addition to serving as the director, Leah is also one of the BMEF’s largest fundraisers. Working closely with other Toronto messengers she is one of the organizers of the MAYDAY! a messenger race and BMEF fundraiser weekend. MAYDAY has raised over $14,000 for the Bicycle Messenger Emergency Fund over the last four years.
In his nomination for Leah, veteran Toronto messenger Jim McCarthy succinctly summed up her contributions to the BMEF and the messenger community stating “Leah has selflessly given her time and effort to this cause which is to the equal and unprejudiced benefit of every courier in the whole gawddamn world. “