Binghampton, New York
May 24-25, 2003
Once again, etnies was the title sponsor of the first stop of the La Revolution contest in Binghampton, New York--produced by Hell On Earth and held at the now-famous East Coast Terminal. This park has gone through somewhat of a transformation over the last year. The wall that separates the main park from what's called the "bike room" (which is basically a box-jump rhythm section) has been knocked out, making the park bigger. There were also some other minor changes to the main course itself, opening up more opportunities for lines. Graffiti still adorns the walls, giving the place its own personality.
Last year's La Rev ran okay, but the majority of the riders missed the comp due to loose scheduling and not being able to hear announcements, or just having too much fun outside in the parking lot. This year was different., though, with a new PA and loud tunes--not to mention the fact that Dave, who runs the park, shut down the partying in the parking lot. However, a few windows were smashed out in the abandoned building next door by some idiots on the roof. Too bad Dave will end up having to pay for it. With the new rules, most everyone was kept inside the park to enjoy the comp, thus packing the place and making it good and loud, which is the way bikers like it.
The park has a lot of crossing lines due to it's big "L" shape layout, so everyone had to keep their eyes peeled for potential collisions. Things ran surprisingly smooth during the prelims, with etnies riders Sandy Carson and Taj Mihelich making the finals. Other etnies riders were in attendance, as well--such as Edwin Delarosa, Josh Stricker and Mike Tag--but for one reason or another, it just wasn't their day. Some unfamiliar names made the finals, but we're sure you will hear of them in the future. A lot of good stuff went down, with some kids really pushing themselves for the sake of a little recognition from their peers and maybe a second of fame. Some of the more well known guys were really throwing down. Chris Doyle (who won, in my opinion) was going huge, with big turn-down to cross-up 360s, huge wall-rides, 360 whips and some real fun hang-five and hang-nothings on the mini-ramp.
Brian Foster (who is currently unofficially wearing a pair of etnies) always surprises people with the constant evolution of his riding. One minute, hes AAA pro BMX racer. The next, heҒs an accomplished downhill racer. Now hes one of the top pro park riders in the world. This guy is just awesome and never ceases to amaze--Binghampton was no exception. With tricks like huge wall-ride transfers around pillars in the park, Brian was constantly pedaling full-bore at everything. When he was done riding, he pulled off his pads, only to find out that he had opened up a scar from a previous surgery all the way down to the bone on his knee. But, due to all of the adrenaline and excitement, he hadn't noticed anything was wrong for over two hours. Brian went to the hospital and got the hole (where his funky pads had been touching his leg) all cleaned out. He is now hanging-out in an immobilizer for four weeks. Consequently, this put him out of the Props Mega Tour.
Even though he didn't feel he should have won, Taj Mihelich emerged victorious on this day. He always entertains everyone in attendance--riders and spectators alike--and today was no exception. Finding lines is Taj's thing and he was bouncing off of every wall in sight with huge 180 wall-rides to 180 out, massive full-speed, sky-high wall-taps--he was even trying to make use of the normally in-the-way pillars. He tried to do a sideways 270 tire-tap on one pillar to 270 out on to some other transiton, but it didn't quite work out how he planned. It was quite spectacular nevertheless, and he did ride away from it rubber side down. Looks like Taj acquired another Fender Guitar for his efforts.
The comp ran smoothly and everyone had a good time. The ams and the crowd scored all kinds of goodies from the sponsors. Thanks to etnies, Primo, Fender, Hell on Earth, Dave at East Coast Terminal Skatepark and to Taj for giving up his winnings to the park to help fund a new bowl they are planning on building in the near future.
1. Taj Mihelich
2. Chris Doyle
3. Brian Foster
4. Markus Wilke
5. Shawn Arata
6. Jeff Degryse
7. Derek "The Main-iac" Girard (who rode barefoot during one run)
8. Chase Hawk
9. Steve Westa
10. Sandy Carson
(etnies) (got a flat tire)
11. Mark Mulvile
12. Anthony Napolitan