We can't believe it's been
a year already since we last attended Ultimate X. Held this year
indoors at the Grand Arena at Grand West Casino I was really curious
to see how good the lighting would be for taking pictures. So
off we went with flashes in hand ready for a dark dingy arena.
At first I thought it would be a total bust with some media being
seated in the stands with the spectators. Now don't get me wrong,
there's nothing wrong with sitting in the stands, if I was a spectator,
but to capture the action, especially at an event involving skateboarding,
BMX’s and motor cross you have to be in the thick of things.
Why "certain" media where given full access from the
get go is beyond me, but eventually we just worked our way onto
the arena floor ready to tackle the task at hand.
The thing with Ultimate X is, whether it be in a large outdoor
space or a fantastically air-conditioned arena is that the area
in which most tricks are performed are relatively tight. And while
dodging a skateboarder is easy, dodging a BMX rider is a whole
other ball game.
On the skateboarding front, 12 year old Tyler Kammies wowed the
crowds with his abilities. Most remarked that given some time
and more experience he will surely be a top contender in the future.
Taking top honours in the Skateboarding Category where Moses Adams
(3rd), Kanya Spani (2nd) and Yann Horowitz (1st).
Kevin Peraza from the USA was down here for this event and man
was he brilliant. He performed his tricks flawlessly, most of
which you only see at a Nitro Circus or X-Games event. At one
point I glanced over to his fellow BMX'ers to note their jaws
on the floor in awe of his skill. And when he completed his run,
the entire arena roared with his competitors showing great sportsmanship
by applauding and giving him high fives on his return. Taking
top honours in the BMX Category where Kevin Kalkoff (3rd), Greg
Illingworth (2nd) and Kevin Peraza (1st).
As usual the motor cross guys are the main attraction. Backflips,
no hands superman and seat grabs are the name of the game. These
guys are amazingly skilled and nothing short of insane. Nonetheless
spectacular to watch. Some of the competitors in attendance were
Nick de Wit, Stewart Couper, Dallan Goldman, Brendan Potter and
Compared to last year's event? Well I don't know ... it was different.
While I appreciated the air conditioning compared to the completely
exposed 32 degree heat of the Waterfront. It lacked a certain
vibe and the lighting didn't help photographers with many carrying
remote flashes on tripods causing many an over exposure and flash
flare to fellow togs shooting from other vantage points.
All in all, a great event though, Ultimate X will definitely be
on our events calendar every year. Thanks to event organisers
for a fantastic event and to the energy drink sponsor for the
constant flow of liquids during the night. Which reminds me, I
still have two cans in my camera bag :-)
another one of the cool videos that the GoPro
guys did on this event. Check it out and don't
forget to view the rest of the gallery below.