1-Harry Lintell-Nosegrind-Brighton

Having gone through the dark and moist frustration of the winter months, there was finally a light at the end of the tunnel as spring sprung. With some whispers over the airwaves coming to full fruition, DXLSF and Shiner (the company who distribute their products in the UK) flew Davis Torgeson, Robbie Brockel and Justin Brock over for a week long tour accompanied by UK Real representatives Harry Lintell, Dylan Hughes and Jed Cullen.

Having been on trips with Harry in the past where he either turned up injured or gotten written off hours into a week in California (and even one time when I shut his fingers in the van door by mistake whilst on a tour in Scotland), it was amazing to witness an injury free Lintell seriously impress the visiting pros.

On one of our last days of what had been a jam-packed and amazingly productive week dodging the clouds, we finished up with a quick street session before an event at The Level. With Dylan and Brock shutting down the larger and newer road gap on the sea front (not the Sugar Rush one….), Harry began to film a line with ended in this nosegrind pop out. Any excuse to shoot a photo with a burnt out pier in the background, I got myself into position and on the first attempt he landed it. Cheers once again for shredding Mr. Lintell.


2-Lucien Clarke-Heelflip-Bristol

This past summer Supra decided to break the standardized tour model of hotels, service stations and demos for a completely new concept; a residency. This residency would see some of the biggest names from the US, along with the cream of the international riders, set up bases in Bristol, Manchester and London over a three-week period. With a heavy demand for media access from magazines from around the world, Thrasher, Sidewalk and Kingpin were granted unique access to the tour.

With Kingpin lined up for the Manchester and London stages of the stay, it was up to me to cover their time in Bristol. With three photographers and three filmers present, this had the potential for few cross words and nause ups but luckily Thrasher sent the ever-gentle David Broach so things went as smoothly as they could. With our fair share of time spent at both Dean Lane and Lloyds, everyone was keen to break out and get to some original street coverage. Upon arrival at this gap over rail down by the renovated Quayside, Lucien and Spencer Hamilton were straight at it with attempts made at a heelflip and frontside flip respectively.

As the session got underway, the hustle for the prime spot of fisheye became somewhat of man huddle for want of a better phrase. Myself and Broach broke out the tripods and got out cameras firmly fixed to the floor whilst two of the three filmers rolled in and out of shot to the left and right of us. Lucien would constantly throw out convincing shapes but get robbed of a roll out by the combination of small, hard wheels vs. soft, gooey hybrid tarmac which had been cooking in the sun all morning. Right at the point where the meddling bystanders and less than stoked residents of the overlooking flats were about to call The Law, Lucien put down the ultra stylish heelflip


3-Lucas Healey-Frontside Boardslide-Coventry

UK skateboarding, for the most part, has managed to keep its weary head above the beige swamp that seems to have swallowed our collective personality in other walks of art forms or sports. One of the most amazing things about our domestic scene is that you don’t need to belong to the same cult or pay the same council tax band as ‘the gatekeepers’ in order to gain recognition. This being the case, it allows people like myself to seemingly stumble across people and be completely blown away by them without any precursor.

On the day in question, I headed towards Coventry to meet up with a cross section of the Get Lesta crew as I had a quiet Sunday between tours and life events this past summer. Having filmed this right angled front board the week prior, I’d placed bets on him being able to bang it out pretty quick, ticking a First Light off the list before delving into the Ghost Town’s most notorious spots with some of the group’s heavy weights as their video deadline loomed. This was not to be the case.

As I stood on the grass mount that towered above the rail, I watched time after time as Lucas would tip toe himself onto his board which he’d balanced in the narrow run up before sending himself from a gravity-less zero to terminal velocity sixty down the steep rail before piling out on the bottom two steps. Battered and bruised, Lucas carried on until he was finally granted the roll away for the second time.

4-Darius Trabalza-Wallie 5050-Manchester

Having no real prior knowledge of Darius other than his City of Rats part, it was case of just going with the flow rather than bullying him into trying something specific when we first met up in Newcastle on an Adidas filming mission. Despite the weather doing its best to both frustrate and anger us, Darius managed to get a photo at pretty much every spot we went to whilst in the North East.

Whist in Manchester on the second of the Adidas project trips that I went on, we played cat and mouse with the ever on and off downpours of the British summer at Urbis before heading across town as the sun was going down. Having stopped at the Tesco for some refreshments, Darius threw down and wallie 5050’d the bike rack outside whilst he was waiting for the stragglers. By the time I’d set up, he’d filmed a few and perfected the stylish shapes which are seemingly offering the view a high five. It’s needless to say that he went on to rack up a solid amount of footage and photos over the next three days in the city.

5-Chris Jones-Boardslide-Bristol

Nike SB embarked upon a ten day UK tour mid way through the summer. The plan was to work our way down from Glasgow to London via a host of key cities in order to put on a few ‘skate with us’ style relaxed demos/sessions and take in enough street to put together a tour edit and print feature in Sidewalk. With two mini buses packed to the rafters with some of the nation’s greatest talents, we hit the road.

Being held up on another tour prior to this one, everyone else was already in Scotland, where the tour began, a day before me. As my plane touched down in Glasgow mid way through the second day I began to get text messages and see through Instagram posts that Chris Jones had already taken himself out of the running for the week with a nasty ankle injury. Gutted!

As the week unfolded and the crew smashed it with back to back fourteen hour days of filming, all the while Chris Jones would keep us media types company and occasionally hobble to a café for us to help keep us refreshed. With one of the last days of the tour being in Bristol and a session at Dean Lane skatepark, Chris became surrounded by friends and fans who all wanted to see him skate. Having had a sneaky flat ground session as the Dean Lane appearance drew to a close, Chris took myself and Ben (Powell) to one side later that evening and told us he wanted to get a photo in Bristol as he reckoned he could fight through the pain. We were obviously well keen!

We met downstairs in the hotel lobby at 9.30 the next morning and headed over to the entrance ramp of a nearby NCP car park before the hoards of Saturday shoppers had chance to make life miserable for us. As Chris began to warm the damaged ligaments up I ran up the never-ending corners of the staircase within the car park in order to get the ever rare ‘from above’ shot. Despite the interest of passers by, the security and a few close calls with on coming traffic, Chris Jones cruised through this lengthy boardslide and got himself a cover.