FATBMX had landed in Cologne for the BMX Masters. The set up is huge as ever. The street course has some new ramps and pro qualifying was going on when the first rain in three weeks arrived. Typical.
The dirt course looks bitchin with a few turns in the set up. Some had it dialled, some didn't but the finals should bring some good riding. Luckily (in this case) the flatland area is covered with a huge tent so that discipline can go on even when it keeps raining.
Mat Hoffman has arrived so seeing him ride the vert ramp is on everyone's program. Mat's gearbag did not arrive and he has been buying clothes left and right at the local BMX stands. The Braun Mini ramp will see some good riding too because Dave Osato is in town.
At Red Bull they're not afraid to take things a step further. When the riders have something in mind that they want to do they go out of their way to make it happen. Take Senad's set-up for example. The photos of Senad Grosic before and after shows you that not all jumps went perfect. Click READ MORE for the action shots and a better view of the set up. Thanks to Senad for sending in the photos.
With a lot of contests being INVITE or PRO only, it is good to have events around where the amateurs can show what they've got. You need to start somewhere and at the FISE they had classes in Street, Dirt, Flatland and a Spine Mini competition.
The 2006 street course was all new and looked great. it had something for everyone. Big wallrides, sub boxes, hips, a huge quarterpipe, lots of tech parts, curved wallride, spin, jump box and then add a few original obstacles. If you couldn't find a ramp to pull your tricks on, you probably couldn't do the trick in the first place. The best thing about the FISE street contest is the crowd. They know what's up and interact in the contest. They clap and cheer for good tricks even if they're just small things. No backflips needed but when Thibault Iser did his front flip in qualifying everyone got on their feet to show their respect. Tibo shot straight to the moon, made the tuck and somehow held on to roll out of it. That, together with his tailwhip drop-in from the container earned him a spot in the Pro Street final. It is so difficult to judge one person's riding against someone else's that it took heavy discussions of who made the top 12 pro final cut. In the end Gregory missed out and Maxime Charveron, John Garcia, Dave Freimuth, Tommy Lauque, Kevin Kalkoff, Tibo, Max Vincent, Randy Brown, Mike Miller, Alessandro Barbero, John Heaton and Ben Wallace were all in.
Flatland in France is big. The media pushes it and it shows. With a couple of Germans and a few Japanese riders at the FISE the level was high. High enough for York Uno not to make the final. He played it safe by doing "easy" tricks in qualifying but the judges noticed and didn't give him a spot in the final top 8. The final was ruled by Japan though with Hiroya Morizaki spinning to first and Taka getting second. Alex Jumelin's protégée Matthias Dandois was killing it on his Bram Verhallen-KHE and finished up the top three, one of his best pro results ever. Frank "Lowcash" Lukas brought a posse of friends over from Germany for mental support (and fun). He couldn't pull every spin he tried but pulled enough to get fourth place. Adam Kun had a flat in the first group of the jam session final and rode in the last group of three. He did manage to pull some impressive combo's for 5th. In 6th we have Alexis Desolneux. With Alexis it's on or it isn't. He didn't ride terrible and with a full more tricks pulled he would have been in the top three easily but the sloping asphalt wasn't on his side in the finals.
The Dirt set-up for the tenth FISE was nice. A big 40ft container was used to get speed for the drop-in. Three big sets followed and then a 80 degree left turn brought you to the final jump that you could jump either straight, at 120 degrees or the full hip to the left at a 90 degree angle. The pro class went straight to the finals on Saturday night. The vibe was great with a loud (drunk) crowd, some fireworks, loud music and Lionel Cardoso on the MIC. As always the riders made the show. Each one of them had 4 runs of which the best three counted. This left room for trying out new tricks but you still had to be consistent to end up high on the score sheets.
Alejandro Caro was riding a borrowed bike but it didn't seem to hurt his riding. He had four super consitent runs with big bangers like 720-s, x-up flips and 3-whips. The Colombian scored first but left straight after the comp with Markus Hampl to finish up the Dirt jumps for the BMX Masters.
After multiple years on the shady FISE vert ramp, the organization wanted to make sure that the 10th edition had the perfect set up. The 18 meter wide Red Bull ramp showed up and it took a bit to get things perfect on the sloping asphalt. The heat and dust didn't make the set up perfect but it was a big improvement anyway.Tim Eichert and Eduardo Terreros were flown in from the LG contest in Amsterdam to participate at the FISE. Too bad Tim's bike never showed up (they flew into Barcelona too) and Eduardo's bag with his pads and helmet never showed up. Tim's solution came in the form of Achim Kujawski's bike that he had brought along but wasn't going to compete. All of a sudden Tim had a perfectly dialed bike and he seemed to enjoy it. Eduardo had to collect some stinky pads from other people and to top it off he rode with Tim's sweaty helmet.
There was little to no room for practice for both of them as they arrived on the spot at 1pm and the contest was scheduled for 1:30pm. The comp was moved back to 3pm so both of them had a bit of time to get used to their new equipment. With 30+ temperatures it didn't take long for the riders to warm up.
On the hot 16th of July Daniel Wedemeijer won pro in the categories highest air and mini and made himself overall winner of the first BMX only contest in skate park Westblaak (The Netherlands). Initiator Jonathan Jansen did the same by winning in Expert the category highest air en became second in street. Winners by category are:
Pro street: 1. Barry Kohne 2. Mark Vos 3. Pim van den Bos Pro mini: 1. Daniel Wedemeijer 2. Michael van der Lee 3. Pim van den Bos Pro High air: 1. Wedemeijer 2. Van der Lee 3. Pim van den Bos
Expert street: 1. Tim Jansen 2. Jonathan Jansen 3. Wijnand Expert Mini: Aymi 2. Stuard Gibson 3. Georgio Expert high air: Jonathan Jansen 2. Shannon B. 3. Stuard Gibson
Usually people walk the world wearing a blindfold! This is caused through missing knowledge and abilities to use the infrastructure in a creative way. I have unconsciously passed this curved wall for at least six years. Then, BMX opened my eyes! YEAH…. Holy shoot, this wall is one of the greatest things the Almighty has given us! The terrain around this ‘porn roundabout’, the ramps from the Pumpwerk Basel, BMX action, a wrecked car, a beer-bar - yeah you freaking Americans we are allowed to do that - rocking sounds and sweating people turned this event into hell on earth.
I wanted to go to Roskilde for years but never made it due to whatever reasons, this year I made it to one of the biggest Music festivals in Europe with 90.000 crazy Skandinavians.Pim van den Bos is sponsored by Simple Bikes and Eastpak and Niels Thanlid invited Pim to enter the show on Tuesday and Wednesday and made me the announcer, not knowing this the week before it was hard to book flights but Pim’s father joined in and brought us to Denmark by car! 1000 Kilometres and 13 hours later we arrived on time for the show on Tuesday.
Eighteen riders from all over Europe and even Argentina and Australia were found to entertain the huge crowd that arrives at Monday/Tuesday several days before the concerts starts.