Extreme Playgrounds: 6.500 Skate- and BMX-Fans in Berlin
The Street Session 2008 resumé reads like this: twice as many spectators as last year and roundabout 15.000 fans witnessed this year’s hattrick session Europe’s most successful extreme sports event series has to offer.
The riders had adrenaline kicks and the fans in Berlin were stoked to the fullest. The Street Session 2008 left its marks. Roundabout 6.500 people came to the Velodrom in Berlin to watch the best skateboarders and BMXers compete in great battles and to rock at the only gig The Offspring did in Europe.
The winners have been crowned. Brazilian skateboarders ruled the street contest. 24-year-old Brazilian Rodolfo Ramos battled against his compatriot Carlos de Andrade (30) and took it all. Even though Carlos scored 96,6 points in the semi finals, it was Rodolfo’s frontside 180 switch crooked grind that helped him succeed in the end. 19-year-old Adam Taylor (USA) surprised each and everyone with his frontside gaytwist and Pierre-Luc Gagnon from Canada unleashed a 360 flip to fakie. In the end and in the finals it was Pierre-Luc Gagnon, X Games winner and go-getter of the year, who received the trophy due to his perfect run.
X Games giants Daniel Dhers (Venezuela) and Rob Darden (USA) showed their best during the BMX street finals. The crowd went crazy and the judges had a hard time doing their job. Among a long list of hard tricks, Rob Darden did a 720 turn down. The audience clapped like crazy and Darden won BMX street. The BMX vert finals had the contest’s most spectacular duel: British Simon Tabron vs Chad Kagy (USA). This encounter and constellation was the same at the Street Session 2007. Tabron won that one. This time it was Kagy showing the highest flair of the day and a flatspin 540 tailwhip. Tabron fought back with the biggest 540 of the day, but broke his finger just before the end of his super clean run. Tabron had to call it a day and Kagy crowned his victory run with a flatspin 540 double tailwhip and took the trophy home.
The Xbox 360 Contest awarded the most creative 360 degree jump. Skateboarder and audience darling Adam Dyet (USA) did a kickflip backside 360 air and grabbed the money for best trick. BMX-wise it was German vice champion Björn Mager who convinced the judges with his 360 no hander.
In between the final rounds, Swedish double pack Sugarplum Fairy and their skatepunk compatriots No Fun At All gave the audience hell. And then came the showdown: The Offspring, punkrock’s greatest band of all times entered the arena. It was as great as on a festival, the rocking crowd stage dived, did pogo, sung along to ‘Self Esteem’ and celebrated the return of their heroes after an on-stage absence of 5 years. Both band and audience rocked the Velodrom.
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