john bell

Relentless Street Spots

Whilst some mourned the demise of the old Goliath ramp, others were eagerly waiting to see what would happen at the all-new Street Spots comp.

In front of a beautifully photographed backdrop of a London skyline, the builders had constructed an amazing collection of obstacles. The hips, curved ledges and flat rail all looked great fun and proved to be challenging, but it was that 14 set with straight and kinked handrails that totally dominated the vista. It was just so damned burly and intimidating!

On the Friday afternoon, we headed over to catch the warm-up / practice session. Surprisingly, the vast majority of the skaters at that session were Brits – but where were the Brazilians, surely they hadn’t bottled it?

Most of the action was around the smaller elements, and Dan McDermott, Trev Johnson, Marcus Payne, Marc SA Carter and a number of others put on a fine show on the hips, rails and ledges. But who was going to take on the beast?

Step forward the very plucky John Bell. After snapping 3 boards in succession, he finally nailed a massive ollie over the kinker, much to the crowds delight and relief that it was, in fact, possible / feasible to skate. Fair play to John, he nailed it, was the hero of the hour and (more importantly) showed what was possible with some gung-ho guts and dogged determination.

Saturday came, and saw the qualifiers and finals. We rocked up, warm scrumpy in hand, and waited for the BMX’ers to finish their stint. We arrived just in time to witness a gut-wrenching bail – the dude destroyed himself on the big set, horrible. Luckily, he survived and gave the paramedics something to do for ten minutes while the skate crowd filtered in, and Marc Churchill plugged his mic in.

People were still buzzing about Bells leap of faith on the previous afternoon, and were delighted to see the foreigners arriving with their boards and taking up position at the top of the stairs – things were going to go off, big-style!!

[Opposite: John Bell | Leading the way - ollie over the kinker]

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