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Saturday, April 25, 2015 - Sunday, April 26, 2015
Host club: 

Hi all,

I am officially announcing the first all flat pedal bench minor tournament which I have been organizing with the support of Lyon Bike Polo, a big thank you to these guys.

Here’s the brief:

Bench minor format in which all players must use flat pedals. The idea behind this is to see the changes in the game that flat pedals bring to the table (fluidity and potentially making it more interesting for spectators).

There will be 6 teams consisting of 8 players grouped by region (more or less, some actions have been taken to levelize the teams). For each region a captain has been appointed, they will have the responsibility of selecting the players. Each team (minus Paris) will draw in a foreign country with the possibility of using two players respectively. Here’s the team list:

Team 1: NORMANDY, Captain: Woods - Associated cities: Rouen, Nantes, Caen, Angers, Tour - Associated country: UK

Team 2: WEST COAST, Captain: Rob - Associated cities: Bordeaux, Perpignan, Carcassonne - Associated country: Spain

Team 3: SOUTH CENTRAL, Captain: Alex Capitaine - Associated cities: Toulouse, Montpellier, Sailies, Clermont - Associated country: Italy

Team 4: ALPS, Captain: La Grosse Momo - Associated cities: Lyon, Annecy, Grenoble - Associated country: Switzerland

Team 5: EAST SIDE, Captain: Ben - Associated cities: Strasbourg, Metz, Nancy, Besançon - Associated countries: Belgium & Germany

Team 6: CAPITALS, Captain: Hugo - Paris

Timings are not finalized but the format will be a round robin in which teams will compete on Saturday and Sunday in 50 minute games. The top 4 teams will compete in single elimination finals on the Sunday afternoon. The semi-finals and final game will be 2x30 minutes long. The ruleset will be very close to the current one with a few small adaptations (which all players will be informed about). One adaptation will be that using a horizontal area with the body as support is forbidden and will be penalized with a tap-out. More specifically: No right to touch any horizontal surface (ground, goals or top of boards) with your body. Specifically: Clinging on to the boards or using the ground as a balancer with your body. Of course there will be a leniency on this rule for example you will not be penalized for touching the ground when picking up your mallet or performing a ‘raclette’ move. The rule is mainly focusing players illegitimately supporting themselves.

Captains will announce teams on February 28th to allow players to organise themselves with travel and other means. An entree fee will be asked to cover the costs of the organisation, T-shirts, court usage, meals and referees. We are looking for a cheap and easy way to stream the tournament but in any case the games will be streamed. Each team will be asked to bring a GoPro and each game a different player in each team will wear the GoPro.

If you are interested in playing in the tournament add yourself to the following list. If you have any questions please feel free to message me. Here is the current list of players interested:


You can find more information about what make me decide to do this tournament in this interview:


The idea of the topic is not to talk about is flat good for the future or not, because as I said, we can talk about that for years, but to share informations related to this tournament and when it will be done, maybe it'll be more intereting to start debating with more interesting facts that just I like, I don't like.



Signed up

I applaud your effort to try to make the game more watchable but you can hop just as much with flats...pinch your cranks with your ankles and your top tube with your thighs and you can do 180s. flats don't fix the stacking and screening they just make it more likely that only the more experienced players can pull the boring shit off and they will have even more of a competitive advantage. I hope I'm wrong and I will keep an eye on this...good luck.

IMO a crease rule is what polo really needs to end all the boring hopping and ramming and stacking.


im gunna start sewing my shorts right to my saddle.

My cup runeth over with blood and not wine

How did this work out? Any comments on the flats-only format?

it was really fun, more foot down, but actually the game was a bit more fluid, hope there's gonna be an other edition,

It was really fun. Great to see a minimal difference in bike handling (mostly staying up) throughout all the players. Although seeing plays where teams would 'sweep up' and just hook all the opposing players leading to foot downs probably didn't look good but it was very funny.

Thanks to Greg for reffing all weekend as well, big job!

10/10 would attend next one


Funny thing, but I was injured so I was not able to play at this tournament... :o)

So I can just give my point of view from the outside. You can't deny that most of the boring move from polo (bunny hopping to freeze someone or to hack a mallet etc...) were not showed this WE and as result the game was more fluid.

But it was also obvious that playing the ball when it was stucked to the board was way more difficult and it results in less fluidity...

I guess if people were more use to flat pedals it won't be an issue in the future.

There were not that many footdown, compare to a classic tournament, most of them were due to pedal strikes (I had to change from 175 to 165 when I started to play flat), and I have seen some rad pivot proving that going to flat won't make the game losing those spectacular moves.

We also introduce a new point, with a limited number of fouls allowed by players (5 in 50min) then player was out. Only Luca was out during a game but many people going to 3 our 4 fouls have to change the way were playing or asked to be replace. It was a really interessing point.

I think it could be adapted to classic polo, with a system like, you can make 3 fouls, then each foul result in a 30sec penalty.

And last point for the semi final and final it was decided that golden should be play on 2V2. We had a GG during the first semi final and seriously I don't think I was that exited around a court since a longtime. Next time you're organising a cool tournament try this you won't be disapointed.


I love that foul rule. That's a really good way of dealing with lots of small shitty moves.

FIFA has a rule like this wherein repeated infractions by the same player or against the same player on the opposing team can elevate the severity of an infraction (generally seen from a free kick to a yellow, but you also see "soft" reds usually come from this penalty escalation)

And FYI Alps won it. Good job guys.

MVP of the Final, Morgan (Alps)
Best Scorer, Morgan (Alps) 26 goals.
Leader in Assists, Josh (Normandy) 7 assists.


First half of the final on my Vimeo account. Thanks to Claire B. for shooting the first half: