The Hacks are Back
The History of BMX Side Hacks is Founded on Rick's Bike Shop Riders, John Palfreyman and Doug Takahashi.
In the early 1970\'s when organized BMX competition was still new and evolving, Motorcycle Motocross was a powerful influence in shaping how this new bicycle focused sport would develop. A great many of BMX\'s earliest riders were already racing motorcycles or in the case of the youngest pedal crossers, they came from families where parents or older siblings were racing motorcycles. It is no surprise then that in this earliest period of BMX, Sidehack racing was a natural progression for those kids that were already racing the modified Stingrays in ways that emulated their heroes from Motocross racing.
Sometime around 1972, two young men that were already racing bicycles in the first wave of BMX in Southern California took the initiative and developed a BMX bicycle with a sidehack car with the intention to race it. This was John Palfreyman and Doug Takahashi, and they built their first sidehack with the help of John Palfreyman Sr. And so it began...
By the middle 70\'s sidehack racing was a thrilling staple of Southern California bmx racing. It was a regular feature at many local tracks and was a featured event at nationals and state championship races. By the early 80\'s sidehack racing had gone nationwide and was a common enough feature of major races across the country that all the major BMX publications sporadically featured sidehack racing coverage.
At about this time, in the first half of the 80\'s, just as BMX freestyle riding was really gaining momentum... we caught our first glimpse of riders taking the sidehack into the skateparks. Dale Perez & Rodney Eastman copped some coverage in both BMX Action (August 1982) and BMX Plus (January 1983).
Then... silence. Sidehacks pretty much disappeared from BMX racing, to say nothing of hacks in skateparks, which unfortunately proved to be kind of a one off happening and after Perez and Eastman and we didn\'t see it again for over 20 years.
Some time around 2006 or so, the Barrette brothers who have been involved with BMX their whole lives and who had been producing sidehack chasis for sale since at least the mid 90\'s, helped facilitate the return of sidehack racing to ABA nationals at the national in Roseville. The trend continued with a sidehack race at the ABA Grand Nationals in Tulsa in 2007. Riding hacks in skateparks had been pretty much unheard of since we caught those last glimpses of Perez and Eastman in magazines in the early 80\'s. That is until Dj Greyboy and Dj Truly Odd sparked a renewed interest when they decided to take their old school collectible sidehack to the parks in 2006.
The photos showed up first on the old school BMX forum, then it was picked up by some blogs and then magazines began to pay attention... RideUK, Transworld\'s RideBMX and even lifestyle magazines like Vapors. As interest increased, Truly & Grey began to explore custom built sidehacks that could better withstand the rigors of park riding. They went through a number of prototypes; always refining the designs and taking note of new ways to improve sidehacks to withstand the rigors of modern BMX be it on dirt or concrete.
In the summer of 2009, Sidehack BMX got a major infusion of interest when Grey and Truly Odd appeared on a special episode of Rob Dyrdek\'s "Fantasy Factory" featured on MTV. For some viewers it was the first time they\'d ever seen sidehacks, for others it was a blast from the past and it jogged fond memories from back in the day. When the episode aired the term "sidehack" was the most searched term on the Google search engine. Sidehacks were back, and the partnership that came out of that episode of Fantasy Factory has resulted in the Impakt Sidehack company.
The popularity of sidehacks began to fade by the mid 80\'s until the resurgence of the new IMPAKT Sidehack in 2009.