Creating the Ironkids was a pivotal moment in our paintball careers and it set the stage for many young players to realize that they had the power to succeed. In 1999, professional and amateur teams that had the means to travel to national events and compete in the bigger tournaments had divided our group of friends. Oliver, Ryan and Whit with Outta Control while Kevin and BC played with the Bushwhakers and Yosh, Opie, Angel, and Alex (me) played with the Diggers. Davey Williamson, Eric Roberts and Todd Martinez although young and inexperienced, stood out as the most talented and explosive pros on the circuit playing with the Ironmen. Oliver and I truly missed playing with our best friends so we found a way to make it work. We grouped up and with the help of Eric Crandall we put together a team to play in the legendary Great Western Tournament Series. Two pros were allowed per team so Davey, Eric and Todd rotated in. The Ironkids dominated the GWS keeping the team alive by selling the winnings to fund travel and entry to the next event. The amount of fun we had during these two short years has been unmatched. While shaking up the scene we realized that we could do it ourselves, that we were good enough not only to play with the big boys, but also to break the mold. Dynasty was spawned directly from the Ironkids and eventually many of the original Ironkids played pro on Dynasty. I’m truly thankful to Oliver for having the vision to create the Ironkids and when I recall the experiences we had I remember why I play this game. I appreciate that many of you can look back at your lives and remember great things about your formative years.
These headbands commemorate the Ironkids and represent the ideas and principles that we stood for; Belief in ourselves, the drive to have a good time together, playing faster and harder than anyone else, and having the confidence to do it ourselves.