Auguste Pellaud Is the 2018 King of Street at ScootFest
By Jake Hershey
Although England is much colder than my home town of San Diego, I could feel the heat as soon as I walked in to Adrenaline Alley. The event is ScootFest, home of most of this year's Nitro World Games scooter contests, and where we're crowning a King of Kings. That title is given to the rider who has the highest overall rank over three events: King of Street, King of Bowl, and King of Park.
Another awesome award given out this weekend is the ScootFest World Cup. The World Cup is awarded to the team that performs best over all three events. In 2017, the World Cup winner was Team District. Can they take it again? It's going to be up to Richard Zelinka, Jamie Hull, and Will Cashion.
The first event of three was the King of Street. Going into the competition, it was sure to be a heavy-hitting event with riders like Roomet Saalik, JD Randriamblson, and Dakota Schuetz. Last year’s King of Street, Didine Terchague, unfortunately hit the injured list not too long before the contest and was unable to defend his King of Street title. So we were going to have an all new King of Street no matter what (click here for a complete list of competitors for the weekend). You can watch the entire stream right here, and scroll down for more details on the highlights:
The action ramped up immediately. As Heat 1 began, bangers were immediately being thrown down. Our broadcast hosts Jimmy Coleman and Laurette Nicoll couldn't believe the tricks they were seeing. This is, without a doubt, the most chaotic event at ScootFest. Riders are flying in all directions, going up and down rails, and hucking themselves upside-down.
The keys to winning King of Street are speed, style, and technical ability. Bails do not count against a rider's score, because it's a jam format and we want to see the heaviest tricks go down, even if they take some time. But, keep in mind, this isn't a best trick contest either. The rider who does the highest number of difficult tricks is going to take the cake.
The qualifying rounds were off the charts. Not a single rider was holding back. Dakota Schuetz and Charles Padel were literally stalling on the rafters. Granted, that's not very “street,” so it probably didn't get them too many points, but it was still crazy to watch. Jonathan Perroni was a serious contender in qualifying. I could not comprehend the number of bangers he threw down. So much so that he had a commanding lead at the end of the heat rounds.
Close in the ranks was Auguste Pellaud, who came into the event as an underdog. We had a few French riders in the contest, but Auguste stood out the most to me. He rides with power and grace and has some of the craziest tricks we’ve ever seen. Also among the top qualifiers, we had Nitro Circus’ own Ryan Williams. Ryan is not only a professional scooter rider, he is also an X Games gold medalist, having recently took first place in BMX Big Air at X Games Sydney. It's super cool that he can come off a big win like that and completely change it up to compete on a scooter at King of Street. He was definitely throwing down!
For the final, the top 10 riders were invited back onto the course for a single 20-minute jam session. The action started in the blink of an eye -- riders dropped and the hammers began! Timo Stuermilin was absolutely dancing on the long down rail. Luckily, he snuck into the finals during Heat 4 -- what a treat to watch!
R-Willy took a couple really heavy slams at the very beginning of the jam, but he got right back on his feet and threw down hard enough for a fifth-place finish.
Our top qualifier, Perroni, was hitting back-to-back tricks and putting down some insane combos on the long down hubba. He didn't get in as many tricks as his heat runs but was still good enough for third place.
Coming in second place was one of the fastest riders on the course and last year's King of Kings: Zelinka. This means he is in a good spot to potentially win King of Kings back-to-back years. Will it happen???
And your first-place finisher, the underdog for the day, Auguste Pellaud! He has so many insane tricks on the rails, including a massive 270 backlip on the kink rail. He actually gapped all the way down to the second kink. I think what sent him over the top in the judges' eyes was his final trick. With only seconds remaining, Auguste went up the long rail with a boardslide zeech 270 heelwhip backlip. A trick I’ve never seen, let alone on an uprail! Mind-blowing. And this contest is only the beginning. Check out Auguste's winning highlights right here:
Does Auguste have a chance at King of Kings? Could Ethic win the World Cup? Stay tuned to our livestreams and let us know what you think. King of Bowl goes down at noon GMT (click here for the stream), and King of Park drops at 3:30pm GMT (click here for the livestream). Only on the Nitro World Games Facebook Watch page.