“Biking is about rhythm and flow. It’s the wind in you face and the challenge of hammering up along hill. It’s the reward at the top and the thrill of a high-speed descent. Biking lets you come alive in both body and spirit. After a while the bike disappears beneath you and you feel as if you’re suspended in midair. ”
Bike Polo was invented in County Wicklow, Ireland, in 1891 by retired champion cyclist Richard J. Mecredy. Towards the end of the 19th century the game reached Great Britain, France, and the United States and the first international match was played in a grass surface, between Ireland and England in 1901.
In recent years, an alternate form of the game known as “Hardcourt Bike Polo” has grown in popularity. In this variation, teams composed of 3 players compete on tennis courts, street hockey rinks, or whatever other hard surfaces are available.
The rules vary slightly by city… Generally this is a faster game with 3 members on a team, no substitutions, and all members are on the court at all times. A street hockey ball is used and matches are played until one team scores 5 points or 10 minutes time has expired.
As a photographer and bike lover, since I met Lyon (France) city team, I was struck by the passion of these guys. They breathe, talk, eat and live for two words: Bike Polo
A mix of madness, commitment, struggle, intensity, friendship, but above all, joy for this particular sport, who gather together at the end of the summer 2015, at European Championships in Zaragoza, Spain. As time goes by, this kind of venue is turning pro, with better bikes, sponsors and medical assistance among others.
Current champion, “Call me daddy”, from France, won the finals, defeating 5-3 Octopussy (GER) after an epic and intense final game. Defeat is hard to handle when losing the final in the last couple of minutes… Mental strength is the key in this situations.