|Right Guard Open|
Pepsi center, Denver, CO. July 13-16, 2006.
Steve Lemig, www.lat34.com: Stop two of the Dew Tour is well underway and the boys of BMX dirt are at it again. They boldly braved 100+ degree temperatures to qualify in the Denver Right Guard Open prelims. In an interview Ryan Nyquist mentioned that the course builders apparently had some problems with the weather when they built this triple set - namely rain. As a result, the set is packed super hard like concrete. So landings and crashes have been particularly painful. But these guys are tough. And the show must go on. We're seeing the best of the best giving 100% to every trick in every run. Crowd favorite Ryan Guettler put together a crowd-wowing second run that made up for a bobbled first run. His second run consisted of a front flip to double tailwhip to a solid 720. Overall, he's looking great despite getting knocked out at the Louisville games three weeks ago. In the rest of the prelims we saw Dave Dilleward throwing a 360 tailwhip to bar spin, which has become a dominating signature trick for him. We had 360 no handers from Colin Mackay, front flips from Anthony Napolitan, and double tailwhips from Cameron White. Speaking of Cameron, he had a killer run where he linked a backflip to double tailwhip to a huge Superman seat grab that sent the crowd wild. Unfortunately it wasn't enough for Cameron to make it to the finals. But, the man of the hour was Corey Bohan who secured first place in the prelims with a super smooth bar spin to tailwhip. In fact, he was the only rider in the event to pull it off. Luke Parslow brought in a second place finish with a killer back flip to front flip sequence. Ryan Nyquist came in third place after landing an unbelievable no footed can can bar spin. The other key riders to make it into the finals include T J Ellis, Chris Doyle, Dave Dillewaard, Anthony Napolitan, Diogo Canina, Allan Cooke and Gary Young. Of special note, Michael Clark pounded out a killer double backflip that sent the crowd and the other riders crazy. There's even talk that we'll see a triple tailwhip and other craziness from some of these guys by the end of the weekend. Keep an eye here to find out.
www.dewtour.com: If Thursday nights Dirt Prelims are any indication of whats to come, Fridays final round should showcase the best dirt-jumping action ever seen at a Dew Tour event. Everyone had to bust out at least one of their best tricks to make it out of Prelims; in the Finals, one wont be enough. Every jump will have to be perfectly executed, and safe tricks will land you at the bottom of the roster. The judges had their work cut out for them; thirty riders with distinctly different styles attacked the course, throwing countless variations of flips, 360s, barspins, and tailwhips. It might be a surprise to the novice onlooker to find that the top qualifier didnt do any version of a flip, but the judging staff recognized the difficulty of his tricks and rewarded him for pulling them off cleanly. One of the big highlights of the event was Mike Hucker Clarks double backflip. There have only been a few pulled in competition over the past several years, so he was definitely stoked to get it done. One of the biggest surprises was the run delivered by Dew Tour newcomer T.J. Ellis. A turndown flip, no-handed front flip, and a double whip landed him in a solid fourth place. This year is proving to be the time for the rookies to shine, so the vets better stay on their toes. Other highlights included:
- Dave Dillewaards double whips and a 360 tailwhip to barspin, along with massive airs over the first set.
- Chris Doyles unfailing consistency, punctuated by a 720, which is a new trick for him.
- Ryan Guettlers triumphant return from a brutal crash in Louisville. His flawless frontflip, double whip, and 720 proved once again that itll take a lot to keep him down.
- Diogo Caninas smooth 720 and double-whip 360.
- Luke Parslows savage attacks, including the most picture-perfect, butter-smooth frontflips, aggressive flip turndowns, and nail-biting flipwhips.
- Ryan Nyquists old-school truckdriver to one-footed x-up. Thats a lot to squeeze into a 360.
- The fact that youd need a slide-rule to figure out the timing on Corey Bohans tricks. He blasted a massive one-footed 360 invert over the first set that brought cheers from any trail rider in attendance, simply because of how stylish it was. Set two brought a no-handed one-footer to a no footed can-can, which involved more hand and foot movement than a Bob Fosse dance number. He saved the best for last, with a Bohan-trademark barspin to tailwhip over set three to win first place once again.
The finalists will grab a hot meal and a good nights sleep, returning in 24 hours to put it all on the line. Its hard to believe that seven of them will be back at the Pepsi Center for Park prelims on Sunday, but that doesnt mean theyll be holding back anything on Dirt. These guys know how to run it wide open, and with $15,000 up for grabs, theyll definitely keep it pinned.
Keith Mulligan, www.ridebmx.com, july 2006: The Dirt Finals in Denver were pretty amazing. Twelve guys qualified for the finals, but only eleven battled it out. In the last hour of practice before the finals, Diogo Canina went down hard, hit his face, and took himself out for the night. The remaining guys had only two runs (usually there are three runs in Dirt) to throw it all down. As you can imagine, some big moves happened, and with the two run format, it all came down to the last run before it was decided. Ryan Nyquist took the win with a high score of 96.25. His winning run? A barspin backflip, followed by a 720, and capped off with a 720 truckdriver. Other banger of the night include Dave Dillewaards 360 tailwhip-to-barspin, Luke Parslows barspin backflip-to-x-up, Anthony Napolitans 360 double tailwhip, Allan Cookes superman seatgrab backflip, Corey Bohans opposite 360 no-hander, and Mike Hucker Clarks double backflip.
www.dewtour.com: As the sun set on the Pepsi Center Friday night, Dew Tour fans migrated to the BMX dirt jump area after being treated to the Skate Park Final event, pumped up for the final round of Dirt in Denver. Unfortunately, Diogo Canina went down in practice less than an hour before start time and had to withdraw from the comp, leaving eleven riders to battle for the prize money and Dew series points. Things got off to somewhat of a slow start, with many riders either crashing or missing their planned tricks in their first runs. However, as is often the case at dirt-jumping contests, most of the riders had Cinderella-story comebacks in their second runs. Heres how the riders placed, along with the runs that got them there:
12. Diogo Canina. As we already mentioned, Diogo wasnt able to ride in the finals, which is a shame, because his double-whip 360s and 720s in prelims were perfect. Hell be back in action at the Portland stop. 11. TJ Ellis. TJ fired out the biggest frontflip of the comp over the first set in his first run, but landed low and blew off the bike into the face of the next jump. Amazingly, he recovered from the resulting knockout in time for his second run, but still couldnt get past the second set. His fourth place finish in qualifying was no fluke, though; well definitely be seeing more of him. 10. Corey Bohan. Corey laid out a one-footed invert 360 over set one, a no-handed opposite 360 on set two, then set up for a barspin to whip over set three, but ran out of time to throw the whip. Coreys usually higher in the standings, and hes consistent enough to still be in the running for the year-end title. 9. Gary Young. 360 whip on set one, barspin to table on set two, 360 turndown to table on set three. Garys got great style, and he can tabletop out of just about any trick you can name. 8. Michael Clark. Hucker went for another double flip in the finals, and despite blowing off a pedal when he landed, it was enough to send the crowd into a frenzy. 7. Allan Cooke. Allan put a good run in the can right off the bat, firing out a one-footed x-up flip, a double tailwhip, and a clean 360 whip. That didnt stop him from breaking out a wild superman seatgrab backflip in run two, though. 6. Ryan Guettler. Ryan slightly missed the landing on a frontflip over set one in run one, but returned in run two with a big frontflip, a double tailwhip, and a 720. He was happy enough with that to throw his gloves and shirt to his fans in the crowd. 5. Chris Doyle. Chris was one of only two riders to deliver two complete runs, and he was pretty darn happy with both of them. A huge 360 turndown, a mid-rhythm 720, and a stretched suicide double-truckdriver put a big smile on his face. 4. Dave Dillewaard. Dilly had the pump on set one wired, blasting higher than anyone else. A cannonball to x-up, a double tailwhip, and a 360 whip to barspin proved he was no slouch on the other sets, either. 3. Luke Parslow. Practically all of Lukes practice runs brought cheers from the crowd, and his first contest run did the same. A first-set flipwhip, second-set frontflip, and third-set barspin to x-up backflip brought some cheers from Luke himself, as well. 2. Anthony Napolitan. The surprise winner of the Panasonic Open looked poised to win in Denver as well after his second run the one he wanted to pull in Louisville - vaulted him into first place. Frontflip no-hander, double tailwhip, and a double tailwhip 360. It looked like he was going to pull another big upset, but one rider had other plans. 1. Ryan Nyquist. Ryan pulled a barspin 720 well over a year ago for a video part, but had shelved the trick since then. During practice Thursday night, he unexpectedly fired out his second-ever barspin 720; number three soon followed, and they just kept coming. He obviously found his 720 groove in Denver; his winning run consisted of a barspin flip, a mid-rhythm 720, and the barspin seven that now firmly resides in his bag of tricks. Winning a contest with a new trick is icing on the cake for any rider, prompting Ryan to jump around like a little kid, claiming that it felt like it was his first contest win. Well let him tell you how it felt: It was awesome, Ryan said with a smile. The pressures on, everybodys doing wild stuff. Anthonys crazy, Lukes crazy, so you have to go crazy. The relief of getting the win was one thing, but pulling the trick I knew I could do (the barspin 720), but it just came down to whether or not I could do it when the pressure was on. I didnt get it in the first run, and I knew exactly what I did wrong, so I had to go back and get it done. Im stoked, man; Im just so, so happy! Napolitan, Nyquist, and Parslow have a healthy points lead over everybody else going into Portland, so well have to see how the battle develops between the three of them. That only means that everybody else will have to keep stepping up to try to catch them, so well continue to see some unbelievable runs on Dirt for the rest of the Tour. Can it get any crazier? It can, and it will.
Ryan Nyquist 720 truckdriver.
Dirt final results: 1. Ryan Nyquist - 96.25
2. Anthony Napolitan - 94.00
3. Luke Parslow - 93.25
4. Dave Dillewaard - 91.00
5. Chris Doyle - 90.50
6. Ryan Guettler - 89.00
7. Allan Cooke - 87.25
8. Mike Hucker Clark - 86.50
9. Gary Young - 85.75
10. Corey Bohan - 84.75
11. TJ. Ellis - 80.75
12. Diogo Canina - DNS
|PARK||Steve Lemig, www.lat34.com: Dew Tour fans came ready for a grand finale show at the BMX Park Finals, the last event in the 2006 Right Guard Open. This whole weekend has taken its toll on these guys. Most of the big guns were involved in major crashes resulting in some surprising upsets. But, that opened up the Finals for anybody to win. The riders had two 60-second runs to impress the judges and they gave it all they had. At the end of Round 1 the standings had Daniel Dhers, Ryan Nyquist and 15 year-old Garret Reynolds in the top three spots. Daniel Dhers, who placed third in Louisville, blasted out a 93.0 on his first run which was good enough to keep him in 1st place until the end. The excited Venezuelan took home the $15,000 grand prize saying "Everything just worked out for me. This is so crazy!" Ryan Nyquist treated the park like it was dirt, and I mean that in a good way, going bigger than anyone else in the competition. As a result, he took 2nd. And Alistair Whitton, who came into the Finals in 1st put together two powerful runs but still lost a couple of places and finished in 3rd place. Dave Mirra, who dropped out of Vert to concentrate on Park, crashed big at the end of his first run. At first he appeared to be fine but later announced that he would forfeit his second run. Scotty Cranmer, the winner of the Panasonic Open leg of the Dew Tour in Louisville didn't even make it into the Denver Finals. The same thing happened with Tour favorite Ryan Guettler. Guettler was expected to rank high this weekend, but was plagued with crashes and injuries. He finished 21st in the Prelims. Finally, major props go out to Allan Cooke who crashed big time during Saturday's practice knocking out several teeth and treating him to a trip to the hospital. Then during Sunday's Prelims he blacked out because he wasn't able to eat anything all day. He crashed again on his first run in the Finals hitting face on the ground hard. And despite the agony he was going through he still got up and rode his second run.
www.dewtour.com: The final event of the Right Guard Open played to a packed house at the Pepsi Center, with the twelve finalists in BMX Park fighting for the win. Ryan Guettler and Scotty Cranmer surprisingly didnt make it out of Prelims, while Garrett Reynolds, Austin Coleman, and Marcus Tooker turned in great performances to make it to the big show. Austin continued to bust out his high-energy runs in the Finals despite having virtually no downtime between the two events. His downside tailwhips and killer decades over the spine were crowd favorites. Mike Aitken also got the crowds favor with unique (and super hard) tricks like a wallride transfer to 180 into the elevated miniramp, and a manual to fastplant 180 into the takeoff of the fun box. Dave Mirra got off to a good start with high flairs in both directions and a smooth opposite 360 over the spine, but a flipwhip crash over the spine at the end of his run was enough to keep him on the sidelines for the rest of the day. Allan Cooke also crashed; he blew out some teeth on a crash the day before in practice, and faceplanted again in his first run. Not only was he man enough to ride Prelims (and qualify) in the first place, but he returned to deliver a complete second run, throwing flips over the spine and up the transfer to the elevated mini. Gary Young flowed all over the course, following lines so precise they could have been computer-generated. Garys style is far from mechanical though, and his quarter-to-quarter whip over the curved wallride gap and a hangover toothpick grind on the rail were just two of his highlights. Colin Mackay also turned in trick-heavy runs, with perfect supermans and a no-handed 360 over the spine. Steve McCann visited the spine as well, with a no-handed 720, and dropped a big turndown flip step-up transfer to the elevated mini. Fourth place went to Garrett Reynolds who, at a mere 15 years-old, is already a Dew Tour regular. He turned in his highest placing run yet with what seemed like hundreds of tricks. A high level of technical difficulty earned him high marks from the judges. Alistair Whitton took third with solid runs and a lookback transfer from the volcano all the way to the fun box landing, while Ryan Nyquist blasted the biggest flair of the day and a crazy truckdriver transfer from the spine over the volcano for second. First place was all Daniel Dhers though - that kid could probably pull tailwhips if he was blindfolded. No-footed can-can to tailwhip 360s, tailwhip tailtaps, wallrides to tailwhips and double tailwhips were no problem for Daniel; with a no-handed flair as icing on the cake. This win gives Dhers a nice series points lead in Park, so itll be interesting to see if he can hang on and pull another upset for the title - early odds favored Cranmer, Mirra, or Guettler. The Vans Invitational in Portland may be the last chance for everyone else to close the gap on Daniel, or the prime opportunity for him to tighten his grip on the lead. Were sure Daniel wouldnt mind hauling the Dew Cup back to Venezuela in October, so we wont be surprised if he shows up next month with even more tricks in his arsenal.
Park final results: 1 Daniel Dhers 93.00
2 Ryan Nyquist 91.00
3 Alistair Whitton 90.25
4 Garrett Reynolds 89.75
5 Colin Mackay 87.25
6 Gary Young 86.75
7 Steven McCann 86.50
8 Dave Mirra 86.50
9 Mike Aitken 86.25
10 Allan Cooke 85.75
11 Austin Coleman 85.25
12 Marcus Tooker 85.00
|Keith Mulligan, www.ridebmx.com: The history books got a new entry tonight after Keith McElhinney pulled the first-ever frontflip flair on vertwhat a wild move! He went for one in his qualifying run, but hung up and crashed it. Although his runs were over, he took another go at it and pulled it to the amazement of everyone. Hes been working on them for a while and tonight it all came together. Congrats Keith. Now for the finals
The Jamie Bestwick show was in full effect tonight. Jamie threw down some serious tricks to take the win ahead of Chad Kagy and Kevin Robinson. Absent from the comp was Dave Mirra after a crash in Park practice banged him up a bit.
www.dewtour.com: Jamie Bestwick began a four-win streak last year in Denver, and hes on track to do it again with a victory in BMX Vert on Saturday night. Jamie went against doctors orders by showing up to ride at stop one in Louisville, despite undergoing surgery just a month before. His rehab is definitely much further along, and once hes back to his max potential, hell be practically unbeatable. The roster of competitors in Denver was short three significant names: Simon Tabron and John Parker were tied up in previous commitments overseas, and Dave Mirra pulled out at the last minute after sustaining minor injuries in Park practice, deciding to save his energy for tomorrows Prelims. There was no shortage of big moves, though; Jamie, Kevin Robinson, Chad Kagy, and Dennis McCoy stepped up and delivered plenty of action for the Denver locals. As the sport organizer, Dennis flew into Denver early in the week to help set up the event, flew back out to rejoin the Boom Boom Huck Jam promo tour, then came back to Denver to squeeze a little practice in before prelims. He somehow mustered the energy to blast a huge 540, flairs over the channel, and a big 900 for fourth. Kevin stuck with his multiple 540 and flair variations at height, and floated a carving 540 over the channel. He went for another 540 whip in his second run, missing a pedal and went sliding off the side of the ramp. Hes so close, so look for a big celebration if he nails it in Portland. Chads had the eye of the tiger at every vert comp lately, and he scored a big second place here in Denver. He slipped a pedal in his first run, then came back with a vengeance in run two with tons of Kagy-exclusive tricks. Barspin to tailwhip, flatspin 540 whip, a barspin superman seatgrab over the channel, and a stretched superman seatgrab scissor kick earned him the $10,000 second-place check. Jamie told us he was feeling a lot of pressure from the other riders, so he wasted no time in his first run, throwing a difficult downside whip flair on only his second air. He pulled out a stretched topside no-footed can-can and a turndown to x-up flair while serving up a generous helping of style and fluidity to satisfy the crowds appetite for action. Tabron and Parker will return in Portland, turning up the intensity on an already hectic chase for the Vert title. Bestwicks in the lead at the moment, but Kagy and Robinson will be hot on his tail for the rest of the series. Tune into the Vans Invitational to see what happens next.
Keith McElhinney front flair.
Vert final results: 1.Jamie Bestwick 2.Chad Kagy 3.Kevin Robinson 4.Dennis McCoy 5.Jimmy Walker 6.Jay Eggleston 7.Tom Haugen 8.Josh Harrington 9.Francisco Zurita 10.Jeremy Fanberg 11.Danny Williams 12.Dave Brumlow