The second backyard Coast to Coast dirt jump tour was on again for round two. Venturing from Raglan at Lewis Jones' joint we visited the Beverland jump farm in Huntly and ended up on the east coast in a place called Hikitia at Casey King's jumps. The weather wasn’t the best but rider determination was and a good time on and off the bike was had by all!
The first stop was Louis Jones' compound in Raglan. This was a little damp and slippery in the morning due to rain the night before. In light of this we made the executive decision to head for the Raglan bowl to let the jumps dry before hitting them in the afternoon. The Raglan bowl is a sweet setup with decent transitions for both MTB and BMX. Cambridge ruler Paul Langlands had it dialled with some prior knowledge of the trannys and lines available. Not far behind was Local Lewis Jones with some big airs out of the quarters and solid style. The Auckland crew not unfamiliar to the goings on of skate parks were also cutting a few nice lines.
After an hour or so at the bowl we headed back to Louis' jumps to do a bit of prepping and carpet laying to help them dry out a bit. With many hands we succeeded and it was on! The crew were flowing the jumps nicely with smooth styles and some solid tricks considering the slippery circumstances. However no one could compete with Louis who was popping out superman seat grabs, nothings to no foot cans, barspins, heel clickers, pendulums and a bucket load of style. Louis is progressing at lighting speed at the moment. Go Louis!! The crew sessioned the jumps for a good few hours until the decision was made to head to the Beverland jump farm. Cars were packed and off we headed to the mighty Huntly.
There were two unfortunate circumstances involving my jumps! One I had KO'ed myself, broke my hand and beat my face up in Auckland two days earlier so couldn’t ride. That sucked and I don’t recommend it. The other was it was a little windy. This was overcome with keen riders and a nine and a half meter light tower that let us ride into the night while the wind semi retired for the day.
Paul Langlands started the riding and was the one to watch all night long. Paul is always looking to improve his riding and extend his skill levels. He rides his BMX at times like a seasoned FMX rider that for BMX is unique and very entertaining. Paul showed us numerous off the bike tricks, turndown threes, flip combos, and a few attempts at his latest trick wish list (whip flips). Although not landing any, it won't be long before he’s hitting the pedals on landing. Kelly McGarry was also enjoying the jumps and started spinning and flipping to amuse himself. Kelly is committed to the bike riding cause, many up-and-comers could learn a thing or two from him on both riding and the industry side of things!
Olivier Goss was the transfer magician for the night, transferring between all three lines on regular occasion, this was good to see and shows genuine riding talent. Logan from Auckland won the award for best style. His classic lofty BMX style is one that will never get old or lose any supporters.
Nick Dethridge also has a bright future ahead with rad pop and solid tricks, he also has a determination to progress every time he rides. Good to see.
Another worthy mention was a 14 year old from Auckland whose name I don’t know but decided it would be a good night to start his flip account! And he did, with a couple of ejections he opened his account on about his third attempt. Yeah boy!
Unfortunately the rain set in at Casey's place for the Sunday session so only a few slippery runs were had. All and all, weather considered she was still a fine weekend. Thanks to Red Bull, Unit, Spoke and Transition for their support. I'm off the bike for 6 weeks with a bright green cast on my hand. No doubt Ill be back with a new and improved hand ready for some more bike riding goodness in the Autumn.
Cheers Chris Beverland