Altitude Cup

When your town is lodged deep in the valleys of Colorado’s front range you can expect you see some crazy weather and Empire is no exception to this, but we ride mountainboards which can handle just about any terrain. The second annual Altitude Cup hosted by Altitude Sickness went off! Starting Saturday morning riders found themselves greeted by some gray skies, a fresh mountainboard park waiting to be torn up and a new event format.

The Altitude Cup took some more traditional event and put a spin on them, for instance the first event of the weekend was a slalom race through cones and over one roller. The times from the slalom race determined riders gate choice in the boardcross racing. Carving is a lot of fun on a mountainboard but you could see from the way some riders were turning and hitting cones that it had been while since they had taking some hard turns. In the end we saw some unlikely candidates with the top times and the heavy favorites like Jason Lee with some slower times. Brandon Johanns, Tyler Mork and Benton Jackson all had incredibly fast times and locked in some lane choices.

All Saturday the gray skies threatened and eventually they opened up, unleashing some rain, sleet and even some snow. The rest of the days events were shut down….. so we all found ourselves at the Original Hard Rock Cafe for one of the best $5 meals i’ve ever had.

Rain delay in Empire

Rain delay in Empire

Ribs, Brisket, Baked Beans, Pasta Salad, Fresh Rolls and Peach Cobbler. Surely worthy of a Lincoln.

Ribs, Brisket, Baked Beans, Pasta Salad, Fresh Rolls and Peach Cobbler. Surely worthy of a Lincoln.

Broke ass mountainboarders ready for the casino!

Broke ass mountainboarders ready for the casino!

Joe Ponts and Dave Kennedy getting those leg warm.

Joe Ponts and Dave Kennedy getting those leg warm Sunday AM.

The youths

The youths

The rain continued through the night putting a damper on the camping but by 10am when riders began to get back to the Dirt Empire they were surprised to find a dry and fast boardercross course ready to be raced. The format went as followed, 2 man heats, double elimination, four man finals. Here a some photos of a few heats.

Benton AKA Malik Jackson & Tross Dersham keepin it tight through the first berm.

Benton AKA Malik Jackson & Tross Dersham keepin it tight through the first berm.

Hej Team

Hej Team

Slasher by day & pizza shop owner by night, Jay Keyna

Slasher by day & pizza shop owner by night, Jay Keyna

Team BillyGoat watching some pro boardcross action

Team BillyGoat watching some pro boardcross action

Ty Mork and Cole Shipp in the early heats.

Ty Mork and Cole Shipp in the early heats.

Malik and Cole semi-finals heat

Malik and Cole semi-finals heat

In the end Jason Lee found himself back on top, with Cole Shipp taking second and Benton Jackson respectfully holding down the third place podium spot. The finale for the weekend was the slopestyle event. With so many options and lines in the new park it was nearly impossible to fairly judge the riders on one line, besides who really wants to ride a straight jump line when you have hips, quarter pipes and jibs every where else? So it was decided that the pros would have 2 runs on the jib line which had a number options, including some rails, boxs, a rhythm jump section into a quarter pipe and skate style pyramid, 2 runs on the straight jumps line and one last big air hit on the left hand hip. The best thing about this course is that none of the jumps were intimidating and it allowed riders to push themselves and through together some technical runs.

It's always nice to see new blood in mountainboarding, especially when it's a lady, Amanda Poindexter

It's always nice to see new blood in mountainboarding, especially when it's a lady, Amanda Poindexter

Yet another new lady. Catherine Rios, skater, snowboarder, mountainboarder, slayer!

Yet another new lady. Catherine Rios, skater, snowboarder, mountainboarder, slayer!

Did you ever hear about that backflips for boobs foundation well.... nevermind. Matt Silva

Did you ever hear about that backflips for boobs foundation well.... nevermind. Matt Silva

Ty Mork letting the blonde locks fly!

Ty Mork letting the blonde locks fly!

Grabbing lots of tail.

Grabbing lots of tail.

Brandon Johann writes a blog, he also tweaks a mountainboard.

Brandon Johann writes a blog, he also tweaks a mountainboard.

QP Japan over the channel. Ecar

QP Japan over the channel. Ecar

World record holder for backfliping 150 gators, Jason Lee

World record holder for backfliping 150 gators, Jason Lee

J Lee of MBS, Yours truely & Van Dewitt head master of the Dirt Star Army for higher education

J Lee of MBS, Yours truely & Van Dewitt head master of the Dirt Star Army for higher education

Matty Silva is a mad man, cork 7 on the hip. Yikes!

Matty Silva is a mad man, cork 7 on the hip. Yikes!

Hej .... translation hi

Hej .... translation hi

At the end Matt Silva stayed strong and snagged up 3rd place with, some double grab backflips and some cork spins. As one of the minds behind this course design Devin Garland showed how it should be ridden putting down smooth cab 5’s and some other switch combos. No stranger to the 1st place spot was Dave Starfighter, showing that experience rules all, linking switch tricks seemlessly into to every run. Thanks again to Altitude Sickness, the town of Empire and all the sponsor MBS, Hillbilly Dirt Gear, AP Production and that fly ass tv show host (call me).


The Battle of Bugs – World Freestyle Championship

Article & photos by Alex Boswell

After hosting a rained off Fat Face Night Air last year, the world freestyle champs returned to Bugs Boarding, Gloucester, UK. The jumps built the previous year had been tweaked and changed to a much smoother ride. As last year the riders had a choice of the original 2 hits at the top, a 14ft drop off to the right, and an 18ft table, with the addition of a large rail to the left. After which the riders would head, at speed, towards a reasonably kicky 25ft table top before hitting the last kicker, which had 3 beautiful looking take offs, and saw the majority of the action. On the left was a hip, then the centre take off, a straight 27ft and the original 30ft to the right, after which laid the final feature a 14ft quarter pipe.

The course was dry and fast, perhaps and bit windy but nothing to bad. The qualifiers kicked off at about 11am on Saturday morning with each of the 35 riders having 5 runs to secure a place in the final. Straight away the rides were throwing down good runs, Tom Kirkman with a rodeo on the final jump and bs disasters on the quarter, a fair few riders were doing huge switch 180’s on the first jump, notably Kynan Goggin’s, and Ollie Morison landing a smooth bs cork 720 on the last jump.

Unknown slayer boosting huge on the first hit

Unknown slayer boosting huge on the first hit

Ben Tweedie streching the back a bit

Ben Tweedie streching the back a bit

After a break and some lunch the riders who had made the cut into the final were announced and spectators were back to watch the top 15 riders compete in an hour long freestyle jam session, with the best 4 runs being used to calculate the final score. The usual suspects were all on form, Sam Nicholas with his huge backflips, Scotish (Simon Andrews) ridding for Trampa, rode particularly well with big no grab bs360s on the last jump, board sliding the rail at the top, and a huge frontflip off the drop off but slid out. Garry Crowhurst was another one to watch, only been ridding a year and was already throwing down runs such as a switch bs cork 540, to front flip to backflip, along with a fs 900 attempt which got him 4th place.

Simon Andrews

Simon Andrews

Mick Kirkman repeated his win of last year in the under 14’s with some slick 360s, Tuai Lovejoy came in on top in the under 18s with some solid frontside spins, Diego Anderson from France (the only international rider) finished comfortably at the top of the masters. Last year’s winner Renny Myles rode smoothly into 5th place with frontside 360s, 540s and backflips. Joe Dickson finished 3rd with a switch bs180, to a frontside 360, before nailing a frontside 720 and a backflip on the quarter. Tom read rode impressively into 2nd with the biggest frontflips I’ve ever seen, smooth bs cork 5’s and huge fs airs on the quarter, but there had to be a winner, and of course, after 2 years out of competition, Tom Kirkman finished on top with runs such as a laid out backflip, to rodeo, to switch backflip, before reverting and doing another backflip on the quarter, another run of a cab 540, to a rodeo, to a switch rodeo, and then another rodeo on the quarter, he was also landing some amazing backside cork 540s and huge quarter pipe airs, all with and effortless style and poise.

Ollie Morrison's back cork 5

Ollie Morrison's back cork 7

Joe Dickson

Joe Dickson showing how you lock in a 3rd place run

Stealing 2nd with the XXL frontflips, Tom Read

Stealing 2nd with the XXL frontflips, Tom Read

Tom Kirkman showing why he is the champ again

Tom Kirkman showing why he is the champ again

Effortless style - Front Rodeo - TK

Effortless style - Front Rodeo - TK

Kids get out the pen and paper study this...

Kids get out the pen and paper study this...

Later that evening after the prize giving and the final results being announced, the usual bonfire and partying commenced with a DJ and a small rave through to the early hours. The next day a few fun comps were to be held, and a slalom course was put up by AJ the guys at Bugs. Some small prizes were given to the hung over riders before people started to pack up and head home.

A big thanks to the guys at Bugs Boarding, AJ Watkins, the Judges; Ryan Slater (Australia), Niki Forcast (UK), Alex Rouge (France) and Steve Counie (UK), all the riders and everyone else who helped run the event. It was one of the best freestyle displays I’ve seen in a long time.


Event Preview – Altitude Cup

Last year Altitude Sickness the United States only brick and mortar mountainboard shop hosted their inaugural Altitude Cup, which was a great event but their park was shall I say….miniature? Well regardless of what it was and wasn’t in 2008, it’s now 2009 and this park is sick!! With the towns support and a lot of hours put in by local riders and Altitude Sickness owners Dave & Phil, Colorado has yet another great park to ride with a handful of unique features and a ton of lines.

The second annual Altitude Cup will kick off 10am on Saturday the 12th in Empire, Colorado, starting the weekend off with some boarder cross racing and a slopestyle event on Sunday. Altitude Sickness is anting up big time for this event and giving cash prizes to the top ten pro riders for the weekend.

ATTENTION RIDERS: If you have at least 4 buddies that are riding and a least one of them is a girl, get some team colors, shirts, hats or even some sharpies and call yourself a team, in return you will get 50% of the entry fee which is $45.

Camping is available onsite and there is a casino 15 minutes down the road, so you can find me there on Saturday night.

Here are a few shot from the Empire Dirt Park.

The Empire

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The Big Hip Landing

The first berm into the waterfall

The first berm into the waterfall

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Johanns airing the roller with some style.

Johanns airing the roller with some style.

Phil's son Gadge getting after it on a board twice his size. He is the next generation.

Phil's son Gadge getting after it on a board twice his size. He is the next generation.

3 Options here, straight jump, or the left hand and right hand hip!

Two quarters, a tire jib and a jeep...just for fun.

Two quarters, a tire jib and a jeep...just for fun.

Ty Mork and Benton Edwards trying to find a rythm on the new track.

Ty Mork and Benton Edwards trying to find a rythm on the new track.

Large step up for the Banshee.

Large step up for the Banshee.