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AIM Series, Indoor Championships
The third of the AIM Series events includes all disciplines, but will feature the Indoor Board/Skier Cross and Slopestyle Championships.
Without the need to spend the whole night constructing a big air, the AIM Series team had put all their efforts into the skier/boarderX course and the slopestyle. This year also saw Xscape give over all three slopes to the AIM Series, which allowed the free lessons to have a slope, the slopestyle to have a slope and the X course to have a slope of its very own.
We didn't catch much of the skiing, but what we saw looked great. Prize giving was fun, with Mike Wakefield mobbed by a group of screaming schoolgirls. The smile never left his face.
The competitors had plenty of time for practice this year and everybody had the opportunity of at least three goes on the boarderX before the heats started. The double whoops at the top took their toll as usual, with the usual two successful camps; those who cleared the lot and those who rode them both. It was those who tried to jump the first and land on the second that were coming a cropper. The run then took in a dropping left, a straight drop, a sharp banked turn between the pillars carved into the side of MK's big mamma jump and then over a smaller table top. As always with the boarderX, it wasn't always the best riders who did well, with some of the UK's best left floundering in the snow at the hands of their fellow riders.
The slopestyle was not a million miles away from MK's normal Friday night boarding session. With heaps of stuff on slope, their were two different routes down the slopes, which took in the rainbow rails, small table top, kinked rails, big mamma, S rail, gas pipe and C rail. All-in-all, the course was excellent. The riding was fierce with some stand out riding from riders like Chris Schulz, James Thorne, Adrian Hutson, James Carr, Charlie Clark and Laura Berry. There was a bit of confusion over what the judges were looking for - big air, smooth rails or a combination. Strangely, Laura Berry (who had just received a silver olympic passport in the post that morning) came in 8th despite a super smooth second run and was marked as if she'd stacked the lot. Chris Schulz was unlucky not to be placed higher with a massive 270 to frontside on the kinked rail and some innovative use of the course - jumping from the S rail ramp onto the landing of the big mama. As the event went on, more and more riders were nailing the S and C rails and that always looks good when done well. A number of riders were just hitting the jumps and we saw some rodeo's and well styled BS1s.
Tim Warwood did his usual fantastic job as MC and was stoked that his girlfriend, Jo Brown, took the women's senior slopestyle championship title. Other UK "names" in attendance were Simon Brass, Adam Gendle and Gary Greenshields. Danny Wheeler and Melanie Leando were also on the slopes, but never entered the competition.
This was a great AIM Series competition at Xscape MK. The venue is great for the slope, but appalling for spectating. Even so, there was a good turnout of people trying to catch a glimpse of riders through layers of red netting and smoke from the BBQ. The curry and beer deal was also a corker. The Indoor Big Air will take place at the Castleford Xcsape on 18th October.
The AIM Series, Indoor Championships event page can be administered by dunx (Dunx), stu (Stu Brass), spencer (Spencer Claridge) and office (Office).
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