World Cup of Skateboarding Australia
Trip Report by Dave Hoang
This is one of the worst contests I've ever been to--very
unorganized and unprofessional. It seemed like the people running the event just winged it and made up stuff as the contest went by. On practice day (the day before the actual contest), they were still building the course, so needless to say, practice started off later then expected. As a team manager, I needed to have heat sheets showing when my team riders actually skated so that I could get them to the contest on time. The event organizers didn't have them until the day of the contest, so I had to get everyone on the team to the event really early, because no one had any idea when they were scheduled to skate. Practice started at 10:00 a.m., but team riders like Fabrizio Santos didn't have to skate until 4:00 p.m., so he had a very long day.
The contest format was crazy. They tried to run it like the Lausanne contest, jam style, where four to six people skate at a time. But the course was split into three sections: section A, B and C. Section A was sessioned by four to six people for five minutes, then B for the next five minutes, followed by C for the last five minutes. So the heats were fifteen minutes long, with the gnarly obstacles (the big rail, euro gap and the snowboard jump) coming last in section C. By the time the skaters got to the last section, a lot of them were out of gas. Since the course was sectioned off, anything landed in the wrong section (no matter how good of a trick) did not count--not to mention skaters running into each other like some kind of demolition derby. It has been said by the skaters that this jam session-style event is less nerve-wracking, but there are many things that need to be worked out before it is perfected. For example, many tricks were landed unaccounted for due to the judges watching someone else.
On the bright side of things, the etnies team came through and made the best of the situation. Literally everyone on the team skated amazingly--qualifying through the first day, making it to semi-finals, and then everyone advanced to the finals late Sunday afternoon. Another downside of the actual competition was that Elissa Steamer
did not get to skate in the regular Men's contest due to some other girl wanting to skate in it (even though she was not a pro skater like Elissa). So, Elissa ended up skating the Girls contest, where she got 2nd. In the Men's vert contest, Lincoln Ueda
qualified 4th place for finals and ended up getting 12th. Jesse Fritsch
barely qualified for the next round and ended up getting 6th.
Then in the Men's street competition, all of our team riders placed well. Canadian Alex Gavin
got 16th, little Australian ripper Jake Duncombe took 15th, Chris Lambert
skated amazing and got 13th, thirteen year-old Ryan Sheckler
killed it the whole weekend and got 5th, the Breeze
, Fabrizio Santos
, had his own cheering section and got the loudest screams, and ended up getting 4th place, and the big winner of the whole event was Carlos DeAndrade
, who amazed the crowd with his all-around ability. Carlos skated every obstacle in the whole damned place. From quarter pipe tricks like big spins and 360 flips to fakie to kickflip crooks on long bump to ledges, he did everything. He skated the best all around, and definitely deserved to win the whole event--it was a "no brainer."