Tuesday, July 28, 2009
After a long day of skating on Sunday, Magnus Hanson came out on top with a first place win at Zoo York’s AM Getting Paid 2009 followed by Manny Santiago in second and Mickey Papa in third. Footage from the finals and Best Trick comps is coming soon.
The Park roster is extensive (20 athletes), but only a handful will be competitive for the podium. Of course, Rune Glifberg (DEN) is the clear favorite, but there are a few other competitors who could claim the title if they are skating their best.
Skating a bowl is all about style, and each skater has something different to offer. Defending gold medalist Glifberg, The Great Dane, has unique style. Tony Trujillo earned bronze in 2008 and skates the bowl fast, taking risks. Omar Hassan barely missed the podium in 2008 (finishing fourth) and has a natural, freestyle riding style around the bowl, doing whatever comes to him. Omar is always a top contender in bowl contests, but he's still looking for his first X Games medal: In fact, Omar's 16 XG competition starts (in 10 XG appearances) without a medal is an XG record; no other athlete has as many as comp starts without hardware. Andy Macdonald earned silver in 2008, and he's got the consistency, plus hard grinds and tricks, to make him a contender again in 2009, even though he's known more as a vert skater.
Meet Karen Jonz, age 24, from Santo Andre, Brazil. She is sassy, spunky, talented and possibly the most motivated woman in skateboarding. The defending gold medalist in Women's Vert has come a long way since she was a ragtag grom skating the streets of Brazil; she recently moved to the skatepark-saturated streets of Southern California, has started her own company and spends her "downtime" competing against the boys. We caught up with Miz Jonz (who, FYI, is busy 24-7) for a quick one-on-one.
Three-time X Games Big Air gold medalist Danny Way (age 35) has dropped out of X Games Big Air in order to focus completely on the X Games debut of Big Air Rail Jam, though he'll remain involved in XG Big Air as an announcer. Danny sees the Rail Jam as the next step in the advancement of skateboarding and said his whole mission is the progression he can bring to that event. "I'm skating the Rail Jam, so obviously I'm not retired," Way said. "It's not about me, me, me. It's about everyone else getting the exposure; that's my role."