Vans Downtown Showdown 2005 Day One: Practice
Posted on Sunday, September 04, 2005 by Rob Meronek
Vans Downtown ShowdownWords by Ryan Clements
Photos and Captions by Rob Meronek
- Each of the five obstacles (four were designed by the participating teams and two were designed by Vans) will be sessioned by two members of each team for a 30-minute Jam
- There will be a 15-minute break in between each session
- Only the next obstacle following the obstacle being sessioned will be opened for practice during each Jam - all others will be off limits
- Each four-skater team must consist of three pros and one am
- Two skaters from each team are permitted to skate all six obstacles
- Am is required to skate a minimum of three obstacles
- Pros are required to skate a minimum of two obstacles
- No substitutes unless the skater is injured
- If you don't have a complete team (three pros and one am) within your board company, you can substitute another board company rider within your distribution
The ObstaclesBefore I describe the obstacles, you really have to understand where the Contest is taking place. It’s an actual movie set, like the same sets that you’ve seen in your favorite movies and TV shows. Right down the road from where I’m sitting is the set where they filmed Back to the Future. And across the street is where the monkey comes out of the guy’s ass in Bruce Almighty (Steve Van Doren thought that was particularly funny). So up and down these streets (sets) is where the random ramps are set up.
Tylenol Street GapThis thing is actually pretty basic. It is what it says it is…a basic street gap with a little kicker on one end and a flat ledge on the other side. One thing that is cool about it is that you can adjust the length of the gap in case it’s too gnar.
Scion Bank-to-BankOkay, so there’s another corporately-sponsored obstacle that had to be thrown in there, but at least there’s the aspect of actually skating on a real car in the event, so that’s cool. After all, that’s what skateboarding’s all about right? “Cars. Skating on cars.”
Foundation Big SixThe boys at Foundation went all out on this gimmick. This obstacle consists of a giant step-up with a pole jam sticking right out the middle of it. After going up the step-up, you roll across a deck, and there’s a BIG six and a gigantic hubba on each side. On the side of the platform there’s a tall, tight quarter-pipe with a death gap.
Girl Torture TotterPicture a gigantic, black see-saw from a dark movie like Nightmare Before Christmas and you have the Torture Totter. It’s an evil, 40’ long overgrown piece of playground equipment that the Girl crew concocted. From what I’ve heard, the actual engineering of this piece was quite a project. The building crew was still working on it during practice to assure that it’s operating properly.
Zero Bank/Stair SetYou can’t go wrong with the standard, small eight-stair, can you? The Chief and his team added some spice to it with a hubba on each side that have angles on them, just like the real version of this obstacle that’s located in Miami, Florida.