I can already feel the energy! Scooter Best Trick is coming to Nitro World Games Wales, set for the 23rd and 24th of May (tickets and info available here). This region in the Western part of the United Kingdom holds a place in my heart and in scooter history, being the location of the first double flair and nothing front scooterflip. We are going on to our fourth year of Scooter Best Trick and, again, progression is going to be the name of the game. Let’s take a look at the champions of the past and see what it took for them to earn that spot.
Salt Lake City was the location for the inaugural Nitro World Games. This game-changing competition introduced the largest prize pool in scooter history, and the boys were psyched. Household name Ryan Williams had more experience on this ramp than anyone, so the other athletes were feeling pretty nervous compared to him. R-Willy put everything on the line and tried to land his hardest tricks, but unfortunately could not connect and ended the finals in fifth place. So what did it take to win? Capron Funk showed us how to do it in style. He managed to pull off the first-ever triple frontflip in competition (Jordan Clark stomped the first-ever no-handed triple frontflip in the same competition), and also landed a never-been-done backflip double inward. Capron executed both tricks perfectly and in full control. Tears were shed on the podium that day, not for the proud winners, but for all of scootering.
The next year was labeled redemption for Ryan Williams. He knew after 2016 that he needed to turn up the heat. This was his ramp that he had learned to ride better than anyone else in the competition. With a year of practice since the 2016 upset, R-Willy came firing. Right out of the gate, he stuck his signature move, the Silly Willy, a 360 double frontflip that only he can do, and he put it down no problem. Heading back up to the top of the ramp, Ryan knew he needed to do another trick that nobody else could do. The athletes only get three jumps, and this was his second. One of the tricks R-Willy practiced show after show after show was the 1080 frontflip. This trick potentially cost him the victory in 2016, but he was able to stomp it with confidence and his celebration showed how much the trick meant to him. Ryan Williams became the new champion.
Thinking about the 2018 Nitro World Games is giving me chills. This was the most intense scooter competition in scooter history. We’ll talk about all three podium finishers, but first I have to honorably mention a few people. Will Barlow was sending triple backflip tailwhips all day long, Chris Farris had some of the most insane double backflip combinations, and Dylan Morrison landed something like four never-been-done tricks. The ramp and conditions were perfect for everyone. For me, the biggest eye-opening moment that day went to Richard Zelinka. First he put down a cashroll quad barspin, but then followed it up with a never-been-done 720 frontflip tailwhip to barspin. My brain exploded out of my head and my partner in booth, Cody LaCroix, had to pick his jaw up off the floor. MENTAL. Roomet Saalik also put on an insane show for the crowd, showing us that he too can do the 1080 frontflip now. Adding onto his score, he beautifully executed a no-handed 720 frontflip. So good, in fact, it landed him second place! Just as we thought things couldn’t get any more hectic, R-Willy was set to drop on his last trick attempt. He already put down a 1080 frontflip but needed something HUGE. Ryan dug deep and put down the cleanest Silly Willy tailwhip, a competition first. The crowd loved it, and so did the judges. Two years in a row, R-Willy took down the Nitro World Games Scooter Best Trick title.
Each year this competition has happened, new history has been written, new goals achieved, and a plethora of World’s First tricks have been put down. If this doesn’t get you hyped for the upcoming NItro World Games (tickets and info available here), I don’t know what will. What is it going to take to win Scooter Best Trick in 2020? When I start to think about it, my mind turns into a knot. I can’t believe what I have seen up to this point, and going forward these athletes will have to take things to the next level once again. More triple backflip combos are going to be done. Are we going to start seeing tricks thrown into the 1080 frontflip? Last year Roomet Saalik tried a no-handed 1080 frontflip, but it didn’t go as planned. Can he do it in 2020? Come find out with us in Wales!
About the writer:
My name is Jake Hershey, known in social media land as Nekbeard. I was born in ’91 and started scootering in ’02! I was born and raised in New Jersey, but made my way to the West Coast in 2014. I now live in sunny San Diego where you can catch me at Linda Vista skatepark almost daily. Scootering is a passion for me, so I hope that you like what I have to write!