UK Series ’15 – Round 4, Freestyle at Knockhill

It was the perfect day for the first freestyle-only comp of the UK Series, and it was a day of surprises…

Knockhill looked like a jibby work of art with freestyle sculptures layed out in aesthetically pleasing arrangements. The sun was shining, the tunes were playing, the burgers were sizzling, and a sausage dog was wandering around… 

Gary Crowhurst - Round 4 of the UK Series '15 at KnockhillThe first surprise was all the old faces we haven’t seen for years. If you’re new to mountainboarding you won’t know the names Jolly Tom, Sam Nicolas, Gary Crowhurst or Ryan Roberts. If you’ve been around for a while you’ll know that seeing these guys back on boards at Knockhill is like hearing that old band you used to like are getting back together.

The next big surprise was star of the day Hugo, who could of had an easy time of it in the Juniors but stepped into the Pro’s, and what a step up it was. At fourteen this kid showed the solid freestyle skills of a rider with years more experience, transferring lines off the drop, using a jump as a quarterpipe, long smooth board slides, and big three’s over the big kicker with sweet stalls and picks. Aside from his tricks, the even cooler thing was seeing his approach to the competition change throughout the day. From where I was standing it looked like he started by following the lines of the other Pro’s and trying to do it just a little better, but it wasn’t long before he shifted to taking the lead in setting the runs and showing how rails, drops and jumps can linked together into some pretty impressive runs.

200So, what were the other riders doing? Harry was up against Neil and Jay in the Masters. It was their first freestyle comp and Neil’s first time freestyling, but that didn’t mean they were going to let Harry have an easy ride. Neil improved run after run getting some nice one-eighties and using the barrel spine but Harry’s hipped spins and back-to-back one-eighties kept him on top.

Erika, our only Ladies rider, was putting down 180’s, stalls and boardslides making up some of the best ladies Freestyle we’ve seen all year. Erika gets the ‘takes a hiding and keeps on riding’ badge for this comp. Repeatedly slamming on the big rail didn’t phase her, she just kept getting up and trying again. Even snapping her deck landing a jump didn’t stop her, she just borrowed another board and went straight back at it.

On the big jump, Brindy was going slightly above average with a big corked five, and was Aiden beaming about his rodeo. They were all over the smaller features too with Matt 5-0ing and front-boarding rails, front flipping off drops, tapping tyres, and spinning over jumps and Aiden nailing frontside five forty’s along with all kinds of other spinny stally tricks.

Roger and Kim did a fantastic job of getting the centre ready and making everyone feel so welcome. The local riders have a great attitude and some truly fine skills. The features and layout is unique and means you see tricks and runs here that you can’t see anywhere else. That’s what makes Knockhill special.

Thanks to everyone who made it a great day. Thanks to Pleisure, Trampa, ATBshop, and Remolition for sponsoring the Series. Thanks to God for the sunshine, we’ll have more of that please.

The results are on the ATBA-UK website.