Friday started off with getting to the venue to only end up chatting with one of the Media girls who worked there who was totally awesome and really helpful. We sat in the Media Center talking about everything across the spectrum for about an hour before I headed on over to the Memorial Colleseum to watch BMX Park practice, it was an open Pro Practice so there were about 20-25 guys all out riding the course at the same time.
That was something to see because every time you'd try to focus on one thing something else would happen right in front of you and distract you from what you were looking at before. But it also allowed the riders to throw some of the biggest tricks down before the public was allowed in. After about an hour or so of Open Pro practice they opened the practice up to the Free Flow Atheletes as well, which provided a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for these amateurs to practice with the Pros that they have always looked up to, and I thought it was really cool of most of the Pros to stay out there and ride with them.
The Free Flow Finals began at 4:30pm and it consisted of the 7 BMX Park Free Flow Tour winners from across the country: Weston Pope (Clarksville, IN), Michael Spinner (Orlando, FL), Jeff Kluglewicz (Greenfield, WI), Casey Barret (Salt Lake City, UT), Anthony Canevari (So El Monte, CA), Kevin Kiraly (Livermore, CA), Andrew Page (Forest Grove, OR)
, however Page hurt his ankle in practice and would be sitting out the finals. The competition would be a jam format, where the riders were given 20 minutes to just ride the park course and pull whatever tricks they could. There would be 3 regular BMX Judges and 1 Pro Judge, in this case it was Alistar Whitton
, who would judge the riders on a variety of things including use of park, variety of tricks, execution of trick and more. The session started with Kiraly going out and pulling a 360 tail whip, Spinner with a tail whip variation, Kiraly with a tail whip tire tap, Barrett was pulling some huge transfers on the course, Kluglewicz pulled some awesome ice picks as well. However the rider who seemed to be on his game the whole time was definatly Kiraly and when he pulled a flair and a 720, we pretty much knew he had it in the bag. And the judges agreed, when the jam session was all said and done Kiraly came out on top and not only won himself a spot to compete with the Pros in Orlando, FL but walked away with a brand new Steve McCann signature Bike which was handed to him by none other than McCann himself. After the Free Flow Comp, it was time to head on over to the Rose Garden to get set for the Dirt Finals to go down.
The starting order for the competition is James Foster, Gary Young, T.J. Lavin, Chris Doyle, Ryan Nyquist, Mike Aitken, Allan Cooke, Steven McCann, Corey Bohan, and Ryan Guettler.
Highlights from the competition are Lavin
pulling a 360 tail whip to super Indian air to deadman earning himself a score of 89.50. Doyle
for his first run pulled a 360 and a tail whip but planned to do something else that just didn't happen and needless to say was not happy with his run at all and it showed in his score 85.25. Nyquist
pulled a no-handed back flip to dead air to bar spin to earn himself a score of 83.75. McCann's
first run included a 360 tail whip to double bar spin to bar spin back flip earning himself a score of 91.50. Bohan's
first run consisted of 1-footed table top, opposite table top 360 to bar spin tail whip which got him 93.75. Rounding out the first runs was Guettler
with a 360 off the roll-in to back flip to front flip to double tail whip which got him a score of 93.50 and the crowd did not like that and they let the judges know. Doyle
for his second run pulled a suicide no hander to truck driver to double tail whip earning a score of 88.00. Nyquist
in his second run pulled a no-handed back flip, to rocket to no handed 360 bar spin which got a score of 89.25. McCann's
second run was a 360 tail whip to superman seat grab to 360 X-Up which got a score of 88.50. Bohan's
second run was a back flip to front flip to superman seat grab which earned an 89.00. Guettler's
second run was a 360 off roll-in to double tail whip to front flip to wipe out on 360 tail whip which got a score of 85.00. Nyquist
for his do-or-die third run pulled a double bar spin back flip to double bar spin to double truck driver which got him a score of 92.50. Aitken's
final run was filled with a 360 to no-handed 360 turn down, to look back 180 which got a score of 85.50. McCann's
third run was his throw away run because after pulling a 720 he wiped out and wasn't able to complete the run which got him his throw away score of 83.25. Bohan's
final run was it, he knew he had to stick it in order to have any shot at Guettler
so he pulled a 1-footed 360 to table top to opposite 360 to wipe out which got him his throw away score of 83.50. The lone ranger now stands at the top of the roll-in, Guettler
waiting for his last run knows its now his to lose or win, and for his final run pulls a 360 off the roll-in to double table top to front flip to 360 tail whip which got him a score of 94.75!! Guettler took the win!!!
The final outcome of the BMX Dirt Finals are from 10th to 1st: Foster (85.38), Lavin (87.63), Doyle (88.25), Young (88.38), Cooke (89.13), Aitkin (89.75), McCann (90,00), Nyquist (90.88), Bohan (91.38) and Guettler (94.13). The tour rankings are now from 10th to 1st: Gary Young, Cory Nastazio, Colin MacKay, T.J. Lavin, Steve McCann, Mike Aitken, Cameron White, Chris Doyle, Cory Bohan and Ryan Guettler.