A BAND of the best BMXers in Britain bowled into Hastings to take part in a hotly-contested competition.
Ride Magazine organised the FA Cup style head to head contest, with 18 riders competing for a cash prize in front of a host of local enthusiasts at The Source indoor centre in Braybrooke Terrace.
The contest pitted riders against each other – taking it in turns to do a trick which the other had to copy.
Each time someone failed to execute the move, they lost a “life” – and once their four lives were up, they were eliminated.
A trio of local riders were invited to enter and held their own – much to the delight of the crowd. Jamie Lusted and Tom Gerrard – pictured above performing a no-footed peg-grab – both got close to making it out of the first round but it was Fit BikeCo/Source rider Phil Martin who was the only representative in the second round – losing out to the overall winner.
The event, which took place on Saturday, April 9, kicked off in the afternoon and ran until after 8pm, climaxing in an epic 30-minute final between Liverpool’s Paul Ryan and Alex Coleburn, from Southsea.
Elsewhere in the field, riders travelled from as far away as Glasgow and southern Ireland to compete, and the format produced some interesting results as some of the favourites like Kriss Kyle, Jason Phelan, Jack Marchant and Ben Wallace all went out in the first round.
It was the first time Ride Magazine – Europe’s top selling BMX publication – had organised a competition and hand-picked The Source because its bowl lends itself to big tricks.
Rich Moore, who runs The Source, was delighted so many top riders chose to compete here in Hastings. He said: “The day could not have gone better.
“We were a little nervous about trying something new like this but most of the UK’s finest made the effort to come down and the feedback was universally good.
“The level of riding was incredible and people left after having a great time in Hastings and arranging trips to come back and ride in the summer. It’s something we’ll do again in 2012 and it reinforces Hastings’s position at the forefront of the UK BMX scene.”
And local bikers were equally thrilled to see the top stars up close.
John Bishop, a 15-year-old rider from Bexhill, told the Observer: “It was so good to see the pro riders we look up to riding The Source bowl. It was kept quiet so it was a surprise to learn on Facebook that all these people were down riding for the day.
“Word soon spread and we spent most of the day watching the bowl get shredded.”
The rounds are available to watch online at www.sourcebmx.com