When: Sat 8th of March 2008
Where: Mayrhofen, Vans Penken Park
After a few warm up days of art action, poetry slams, skate sessions and park warm ups, it is becoming serious. Yesterday the qualifications for the finals on Saturday started...
Ingemar Backman (the legend is back!), Kalle Ohlson, Martin Cernik, Tyler Chorlton, Danny Wheeler, Tonton Holland and many more all packed their bags last weekend to come to Mayrhofen to compete with the locals at the legendary Wängl Tängl 2008 (5 star TTR) - you all know whom I'm talking about, the Ästhetiker! Steve Gruber Wolle Nyvelt, Chris Kröll, Mone Monsberger were all ready to show the "tourists" what the Vans Penken Park had to offer. We didn' t want to miss the show so we left our Munich office for the "real work" yesterday and arrived just in time for the qualifications.
It had dumped about 30 centimetres Wednesday night but the park was in really good shape and looked fun to ride: Three big kickers, some rails and an enormous hip but the unique and sparkling diamond is for sure the Red bull end section with the ‘Cradle’ (an open bowl to ride through) and the ‘Taco’ (a curved wallride)!
Due to the weather problems, plans for the qualifiers had to be changed. The new plan consisted of splitting the qualifiers up in two days. Yesterday all the riders had the chance to perform on the “kicker line" and today the second part is going to take place on the “alternative line". Every day the riders get two runs and the better one of each count. There are 100 points to be scored in one run, but the judges can give an extra bonus for the Red Bull end section. The overall score of the two days determines which 12 riders of the two heats advance to the finals. Therefore also the riders who did not score high yesterday still have the chance to ride on Saturday, if they do well today.
But let’s go back to yesterday with its bluebird sky and loads of sick tricks. Usually riders keep it simple in the qualifiers to step it up and show their hardest tricks not before the finals. According to all the “Eöh" during yesterday’s runs, the level of riding was amazing. Some of the rookies showed that they for sure have a chance to make it into the finals. Local rider Tom Klocker went stylish as usual and rounded up his run with a giant Cab 9 on the big Vans kicker. Finnish rider Niki Korpela proved with a perfect Fs 10 that he is not just battling for the finals, but has a true chance to win the whole event. It was Louie Purucker who showed today’s favorite trick for the crowd, when landing a perfect double backflip on the first kicker. But also the French posse didn't want to get missed out and so Arthur Longo went really big - if you had the pleasure to see him at the Air & Style Quarterpipe in Innsbruck in February you know what I mean with "big"... Norwegian rockstar Danny Larsen did not go for the big spins, but was riding creative and stylish like no one else, which was honored by the judges. Last but not least a massive "Ehöööö" goes to Chris Kröll who rode his first contest since he got injured last season and one thing is sure – the man is back!
The good weather finally allowed the shapers to show the park the way how it was initially planned. The Suzuki rail, shaped like a surfboard, on top of the Suzuki New Grand Vitara, is ready and part of tomorrow’s “alternative line". The Austrian art crew “permanent unit" designed the car yesterday up on the mountain with their remarkable graphity skills. The obstacle then was immediately tested by Ästhetiker Rudi Kröll. Today all the riders have to show their railskills, because the 18m Carharrt Down Rail waits for them in the “alternative line".
More about the second days of the qualifications and who got the most "Ehös" today later when we are back from the mountain…
For information also check www.aesthetiker.com/tour/2008