Shiner’s roving gang of skateboarding madmen are up next in CJ’s Big Push 2011 recaps, which sees Robbie Brockel, Nicky Howells and James Coyle dishing out some stories from their week on the road.
Get your read on below then head back tomorrow for more of the same…
Manhead – kickflip. Photo: Jerome
Like quite a few riders on other teams this year, this was the first Big Push for you right? How did you get on and was it everything you expected it to be?
Yeah this was my first Big Push so I was really stoked to get the chance to go along on it. I had done a few little trips with Nicky and knew Josh a little so was pretty hyped to meet everyone just to get out and skate around the UK as I love getting the chance to skate new spots. Thanks Jerome.
The rest of the Big Push was what I had expected really, Travelodge’s, long drives, Tesco meal deals and hopefully get to hit some sick spot on the way and chill with new people.
With a week long trip like this, it’s always hard to know how to pace yourself. Do you go big and gnarly early on and risk writing yourself off, or try and pick your battles? You had a pretty rough old slam whilst skating over that rail into the sloping bank. What happened there and was that the end of skating for you that week?
To be honest, when I found out we were skating up north the first few days I was hyped as I could take people to spots I knew and hopefully everyone else would get stuff, and I had planned to just do whatever until we got to spots that were new to me.Although it never ends up the way you plan…
I met everyone on the first evening in Darlington and went and had a skate around Middlesborough and then we went into Newcastle the next day via Sunderland, which was a good day; it ended with fish and chips by the beach, which is always good.
Next day we started at Five Bridges where I bust my right ankle so the trip was pretty much over then for me then. I decided to take everyone to that rail into the bank and nobody was into it, so I kind of felt I should maybe try it which was crazy with my ankle like a balloon. I ended up taking that slam which sprained my left ankle and twisted my knee which I thought it was then completely over to be honest (skateboarding in general, not the Big Push). I only started skating again about a month ago; the Big Push took out my ankles so I am just hyped to be skating again.
How was it having a big US name like Robbie coming over to join you guys this year, and did it put the pressure on for everyone else to go hard and try and get to some of the better spots to show him what we had to offer?
It was sick having Robbie with us. I made sure we headed to a bunch of spots in my area which I wanted people to skate, he would just hit it and we would get in the van and hit the next spot. I’d never seen him skate before so I was hyped when I skated with him the first day. He pushes fast!
I don’t think it put on any pressure really, well I never had a chance to think about it to be honest before I hurt myself, but everyone is well capable of killing it anyways so I don’t think so. Robbie is cool and can just skate whatever you take him to.
Is there anywhere, which you guys missed out on or got the boot from along the way that you’d be keen to head back to, and are there any particular areas of the country you try and get to if you were asked to do the Big Push again?
It was gutting going to loads of sick spots and only watching because I was injured, but at the same time I was so hyped to see everyone skating.
If I was asked to do the Big Push again I would like to start in the south and work my way up to my bed in Newcastle, I’m sure I will have hurt myself enough to just get dropped at the door on the last day up north. We went to that DIY spot in Sheffield and the one in Liverpool too. There were spots on the Adidas one that looked rad too with the blocks and the big three, we would have loved to go there too but all in good time.
Nicky Howells – gap to back lip. Photo: Jerome
With the Sidewalk ‘In Progress’ and Kill City ‘Rookies’ deadlines only round the corner from the end of the Big Push, how much pressure did you feel to firstly not get hurt and write of any last minute stuff with those DVDs and secondly still skate as hard as ever on the Big Push with all of that in the back of your mind?
I’d hurt myself, well my ankle so much filming for the Sidewalk DVD that it just seems normal that I fuck my ankle every now and then. The Shiner Big Push was the first time I’d skated in two months after messing my ankle up trying to get something for ‘In Progress’, which meant I couldn’t get any of the last bits I wanted. I didn’t feel much pressure on Big Push, the only problem I had was getting my confidence back and I was such a pussy on that trip. It was kind of the same for the Kill City DVD, I always seemed to be hurt when there was filming missions on so my part in that isn’t as good as I would of liked but I think me and Daint are gonna start working on a web part to come out in the next few months or so.
With your housemate and partner in crime, Dave Snaddon, on the DC Big Push, was there any on-going Facebook or text wind ups and beef throughout the week in the name of a bit of friendly rivalry?
I don’t think I spoke to Snadz the whole week ‘coz, to be honest, I can’t stand him! I see him enough at home, so a week without having to talk to or see his stupid face was very refreshing, ha-ha! Only jokin’, Snadz is the best! I rung him up one night to show everyone on the Shiner trip how good Snadz is at whistling, as he’s absolutely amazing at it!
The cross section of riders on the Shiner Big Push this year obviously called for a wide variety of spots and terrains. How did you find going from skating blocks, gaps and other street spots and then the next day skating a backyard bowl or DIY spot?
I loved it! I think changing the spots up makes it loads easier to get shit done, if you just keep going to block spots your heads gonna explode. I loved skating all the DIY spots we went to especially the one in Sheffield that I think Baines started, that was so good! The backyard pool in north Wales absolutely piss take so it was good mix bit of street and a bit of tranny. I love a bit of tranny I does!
With a fair amount of time spent around the North East this year, was there anywhere that you visited that you want to head back to skate?
All of my favourite places to skate are up north! I absolutely love Sheffield, Leeds and Manchester. I’d like to live in Sheffield or Leeds one day but defo wanna go skate Sheffield DIY spot again soon. I think I could skate that place for the rest of my life!
Robbie Brockel – stalefish. Photo: Jerome
After re-watching the Shiner edit just now, it looks like you had no problem with jet lag or adapting to the often less than perfectly smooth surfaces over here in Britain. How did you find the terrain which Jerome took you guys to and was there any where in particular that you were super stoked on?
I was really stoked on all of the D.I.Y. spots we skated. I live in Phoenix, Arizona and anytime we build anything like that it gets removed immediately. As far as the all the rugged terrain, I adapted pretty well to that because we are always skated rough ditches in Arizona too.
How much information did you have of the concept and format of the Big Push before heading over for it and how, if at all, were those preconceptions altered after a week on the road around the UK?
I had heard of the Big Push before and knew its concept. I was mainly worried about coming out there and meet with a group of guys I had to hang out with for the next week that I had never met before.
Jerome took you guys over to Newcastle and the North of England for a fair chunk of the week. What were the main cultural differences that stood out for you whilst visiting different parts of the UK?
The architecture was the main difference. Other than that, nothing stood out to me to be too out of the ordinary.
With the Real video dropping in the not too distant past, what were you doing over in the States leading up to the Big Push and were you still harbouring any injuries from the ‘Since Day One’ video part?
After the video came out I was still going on trips and skating daily. The video came out in the spring and right after that summer rolled around and I was basically gone all summer on trips.