Bondi bowlarama part 1 The lead-up.

4 Mar

Bondi bowlarama was lots of fun. Went up a few days early to skate before it all kicked off, straight to the bowl from the airport I missed out on catching up with a few friends in town but I did get involved in a rad session on the Wednesday night. Mostly ruled by the groms who were all on fire, with a splash of older local talent and some international skaters too. Big long 50-50 grinds were coming thick and fast but it unfortunately didn’t really wash off on me, most of my tricks were done down the shallow end and even there I was far from owning it.
Rain shut the session down but not until we had skated under lights for about a half hour after it got dark. Scurried up the hill around the corner and put my bags down then necked a few beers and hit the White Revolver to catch up with old faces and make friends with a few new ones.
I didn’t manage to get away injury free but it wasn’t in the bowl where I cut my knee open. Staggering back up the hill with a group of new friends i must have run straight into a star picket or something, nice little gash above the knee, but nothing to worry too much about. I wasn’t gonna be able to get back in the bowl very much again after that anyway.
Thursday and Friday it was all on. The pros were all down there getting fast lines thru the bowl and testing it for airpower. Unbelievable skills on display by a ridiculous number of local and visiting pros. The groms were still getting in there and snaking like there was no tomorrow. Which there wouldn’t be ‘cos Friday was going to be a wristband only affair as the big day drew near.
The weather was never looking good but Thursday and Friday were pretty good. I mean the forecast had it that it would rain every day I was there, but it wasn’t until Friday night that it got burly.
Never seen so many gnarly tricks or a better lineup of skaters and I would debate anyone that it has ever been assembled. Christian Hosoi and Steve Caballero were there to represent the era in which vert skating really went mainstream, but there was a depth of talent in the older riders that has likely never been seen here if anywhere.
The Masters section of the contest was shaping up to be an amazing showcase of talent, with Nicky Guerrero, Pat Ngoho and Lester Kasai, George Orton and Eddie Elguera out to remind the younger guys who invented alot of the tricks done today. Vert rulers like Bucky Lasek and Rune Glifberg and Omar Hassan were also heavy in the mix. I would say fifteen of the skaters at least did 540s and they were all boosting. 

The younger guys of course can be expected to impress, but it was up to a handful of kids to really show everyone where bowl skating can be taken. Pedro and his mate Felipe made sure that the Brazilians would be noticed, and of a similar age and no less daring Steven Pineiro and Alex Sorgente and Curren Caples were all hungry. These kids alternated between padding up and getting a raw feel for the bowl like some of the Bones team riders that also made the long trip across the Pacific.

Bones has just released one of the most exciting videos with a blistering all terrain attack, and sent out Kevin Kowalski, who got best trick in Wellington, Ben Hatchell who won that at Bondi and Ben Raybourn. But Brad McClain who rides for Powell was highest placed among the guys that choose not to wear pads and helmet, all were oozing style and confidence with high octane lines around the bowl and over the hip and with a recklessness tempered by unwavering control and  lack of concern for those that worried for their safety.



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