After the longest break of the series and plenty of time to recover from the run of summer comps most people were ready for Mancunian Meltdown at Manchester’s Best Rampz. But with a back room stacked to the gills with prizes and a ramp plastered in stickers, there were only a couple of riders on the ramp… worry was setting in.
Just as we started to think it would be a quiet day, there were twenty kids on the platform and a snake session was in full flow. B Group practice was underway by 13:00 but with the usual dribble of A groupers also joining the party, a good run was hard to come by before the first of THREE B Group heats started at 13:30.
Qualifying took a while to get through but there were some new names on the scoresheet showing promise and the top riders were in full effect. Representing the fairer sex, there was a welcome return from Rebecca Aimee Davies showing she hasn’t forgotten how to ride vert and a sterling repeat performance from Georgia-Rose Scott since joining us at Blackpool. Other new names we saw were Theo Tuckett, Tate Tucket, Gaz Hughes and Dan Baker (who will be one to watch when he finds his consistency).
The B Group final was a blast. Jon Nixon was getting nicely inverted but couldn’t find the full runs to improve on 8th. Skate Wine’s Rob Ayton, looking sharp in his presenter’s blazer, took 7th with his mix of coping tricks including a first-time 180-to-rock-fakie thrown in for good measure. Mat Marlow took a heavy slam and left the comp on his 4th run earning him 6th place and 3 stitches on the chin! Working his way up one position per round showing great progression, Logan Dell secured 5th place with solid airs and 360 shuv-its. Richard Styles also got his highest placing at 4th thanks to some improved consistency, big airs and grinding nosepicks.
The top 3 are familiar faces with one being a new podium entrant. Alex Griffiths had a good array of high airs and invert variations but couldn’t quite fend off the fast lines, grinds and lein-tails from Rio O’Byrne who is really improving despite not skating vert recently, congratulations on your first podium Rio!
Taking his second win in a row and never dropping below second in the series, Finley Kirkby has now earned enough points for the series win of 2015! His ever expanding bag of technical tricks including grinds, airs, varials and slides coupled with his almost untouched consistency means this win is very well deserved and we’re looking forward to seeing him progress in 2016. Winning his debut year at 11 years old with such dominance is a massive achievement – congratulations Finley, good luck in A group!
The A group was a sparse affair, with many usual riders not showing up for whatever reason. There was no Sean, Zippy, Jim, Andy Scott or Oakley. Chris and Jesse turned up, but due to injuries, they were unable to skate. Good job really on Chris’ part, as he made a superb MC for the day. Anyway it was down to a mere 7 riders for the A group, so no qualifiers, just a jam session, but it was tight and these guys tore it up. Adam Williams claimed 7th, if there was a prize for highest airs, he’d be in with a very good shout. Crazy Brazillian Jeorge Viera took 6th with his usual gnarly switch runs, his switch stalefish the usual highlight. Rolling into 5th, was Dave Allen, its great to have him back and at 45 years young, still skates with the attitude of a young kid, alley oop eggs, cab pogo rocks and all kinds of balls out trickery. Winging his way to 4th, was local ripper Reiss Johnson, big airs, long smiths, body jars and awesome Andrechts, he even pulled off an invert to fakie.
Getting on the podum, Jim”The best skateboarder in the world”™ Langran landed in a well deserved 3rd, huge tweaked slobs and some serious lip trick wizardry, his one footed alley oop grinds are a sight to behold. That leaves the usual two suspects to slug it out. In a close second this time was Matty “Bieber” Carlisle, he hadn’t skated vert for 4 weeks but you’d never tell, huge methods, gay twists and stalefish 540s were the order of the day. That leaves…. you’ve guessed it…. Jake Anderson. Jake looks to have gained a new lease of life in his skating, and looks like he’s really enjoying it at the moment, a well deserved first place, all kinds of tom foolery from including kickflip leins, kickflip melons, gay twists, methods to fakie and some 540s thrown, and even a splash of lip trickery.
So, going into the final round at Blockless Combat in Birmingham we have a very close battle for the A group win between Jake and Matty, and a pre-determined B Group winner in Finley with a 4-way scuffle for the runner-up spots behind him. Let battle commence!
// words by Mat Marlow/Matt Leese[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]