September 2-5, 2004
You couldn't choose a better town to have a contest in than Vancouver. Its scenic, the weather's awesome this time of year, and there are 80-plus bike-friendly concrete skateparks--probably some of the best in the world--in and around the city. This is the second year here in Vancouver for the Metro Jam, an event held at the Kerrisdale hockey arena (minus the ice). And what an awesome venue it is--great location, perfect seating situation and one of the best park courses a contest could have.
Jay Miron and the Ten Pack crew run a tight ship, and know exactly what they are doing when it comes running this thing. Qualifying for amateurs was on Friday and the am Finals went down on Saturday morning. Sometimes I donҒt understand why some of these kids enter as amateurs, as they are at such an amazing level, they could definitely hold their own in the pro division. On the other end of the spectrum, there should for sure be a novice class, which should go for the pro class, as well, because there are some guys that are in way over their heads. But, I guess they can do whatever they want.
Pro Qualifying was Saturday afternoon, and if this was a foretaste of Sunday's action, it was going to be nothing short of awesome! I would be surprised if anyone walked away without shedding some blood. Sunday rolled around, with most of the Qualifying riders in the Pro class up bright and early--although some were a little worse for the wear from the night before. But for the most part, everyone was in one piece and functioning somewhat.
Sixteen riders made it through to the Finals--four groups of four battling it out in the jam-style format that everyone likes so much, creating a real session-like feel to any contest. Four guys are on deck at any one time, with eight minutes to get the job done and show the judges their stuff. Without going into too much detail and boring your pants off, here are some highlights with the results below.
Dave Osato (rocking etnies) killed it in Qualifying, but couldnt quite repeat it in the Finals, suffering a few falls. He fired out some pretty amazing nosepick 540Ғs on the Jersey barrier, a pretty bad-ass nose wheelie jumping from the barrier up to a six foot tall block and dropping onto a wedge, a pretty dope 360 tailwhip, which, consequently, was the only time he jumped the box. Dave capped off both Qualifying and Finals with a hop-whip to grind attempt that came pretty close, but no cigar.
Stephen Lilly brought trail-style riding to the comp and flowed the hell out of the course. Jake Honesto pulled one of the most amazing tricks of the comp: a 360 tire tap on top of the five foot tall pagoda to tailwhip in on the other side, sending him into 12th. As quoted by the announcer, Grotbags, of the Metro Jam, every time Brian Foster (rocking etnies) entered the course, Brian is the best all-around rider of all time.Ӕ He wasnt too far off-base, actually, because coming from an AA racing background, Brian can haul ass around a park course while still firing out all the tricks that make him a great.
Australia's Clint Miller is a lip trick wizard. Right out of the gate, he pulled an awesome stalled double tailwhip nosepick. He could have probably thrown a few more tricks in there to rub some salt in the wounds of his competition, like some techie tail tap / ice pick / 270 business up on the pagoda, giving him a respectable Final placing. Josh Harrington, the human toothpick. YouҒd think this guy couldnt hold up to any kind of fall, but believe me, he is one tough cookie. Josh rides fast, goes high and isnҒt afraid of too much. With some bike problems and a fall on a wallride to barspin, he could have placed higher. Van Homan, thats all I have to say about him.
CanadaҒs best kept secret, Dustin Guenther, has the perfect blend of smoothness, street skills, tech and burliness that makes him a great. Text book inverts, huge whips and a gap 360 over the driveway to feeble down the ledge gave him a decent final placing. Your 1st place Qualifier goes by the name of Morgan Wade. This guy one of the gnarliest, no-holds-barred, yet nicest guys around--he goes massive! Hes a tailwhip king with a bad-ass style, and being the only guy alive to consistently pull the bike flip, no wonder he rules.
Ryan Nyquist has come of age. A couple of years ago, he was pegged as a one-jump chump. He always did barspins and it was aggravating to his competition that he placed so high. Well, those days are long gone. Ryan now has an overflowing bag of tricks that have put all nay-sayers to rest. 720Ғs, tech lip tricks, awesome 360s, double truck 540Ғs and the biggest flairs I think anyone has ever seen, make this guy sure-fire winner.
All this was no match for San Diego Californias finest, Gary Young, a kid with way too much energy and way more moves on a bike than a human should have. Fast and furious would describe Gary well. He can hit more tricks in 90 seconds than any other rider. Beyond big wall rides, whip drop-ins off of the pagoda, 450Ғs, fast lines and a rear tire slide on the pagoda to revert culminating his run was all it took for the win.
After the Finals were over, the Oakley Best Trick contest went down on the driveway. A lot of good stuff happened, including Dustin Guenther again pulling the 360 to feeble across the whole driveway then down the ledge, some other kid with no name pulling a 540 across the whole driveway after the bell (so it didnt count), and the winning trick pulled by a guy named Mike Hoder, who gapped the whole driveway to over-toothpick on the down rail. It was a good twelve-foot gap, and the rail was pretty sticky, so seeing him pull it cleanly convinced the judges he should be crowned
Pro. Final Results
1. Gary Young
2. Ryan Nyquist
3. Morgan Wade
4. Dustin Guenther
5. Van Homan
6. Ryan Guettler
7. Josh Harrington
8. Clint Miller
9. Jeff Landtiser
10. Brian Foster (rocking etnies)
11. Eric Ream
12. Jake Honesto
13. Stephen Lilly
14. Dave Osato (rocking etnies)
15. Paul Kintner
16. Darin Read
Oakley Best Trick
Mike Hoder, driveway gap to over-toothpick down the rail