It’s never easy to wake up early after a late night skating, least of all after an uncomfortable night of sleeping on the floor and sharing a bathroom with several hundred sweaty festival goers. However, still pumped up on adrenaline from the previous night’s demonstration, the NASS Festival 2014 freestylers powered through and prepared themselves for the first full day of freestyle demos.
The day was off to a promising start, following the arrival of veteran UK freestyler Callum Bowran. Within 10 minutes of Callum showing up, he had already managed to provide and set up our sound system, relocate the demo to a considerably better spot and even managed to wrangle us a free breakfast!
As the morning continued on, the demo team continued to grow with the arrival of Simon Mrozinski and Matt Cheeseworth; two of the UK’s younger and more technical freestylers. With the team now seven freestylers strong, we were ready to begin.
The first demo kicked off at 11:30, with the freestylers going out one by one to demonstrate their unique abilities. Despite a late night demo-ing, Tony Gale, John Hanson and Denham Hill were on top form, skating fast and fluidly to rouse the excitable crowd. Simon had brought his incredibly deep bag of tricks, pulling out combos that we had never even seen him try before; along with a few monkey flips and pogo variations performed solely to annoy Tony Gale who notoriously detests “Circus Tricks”.
Matt had developed a lot more conventional freestyle tricks following his run at last year’s Championships, mixing them in with his usual brand of tech-flippery. Anyone who’s ever skated with Never Enough Skateboards’ Callum knows that it’s always an absolute pleasure to watch him skate; quite simply, there is no-one in the UK who embodies traditional freestyle more than this man!
The demo ended with a free for all game of skate, which began with me dishing out a few letters with some goofy fingerflips, continuing on to Callum setting a 180 shove it before destroying us with some crazy combos and ending with a showdown between Callum and Tony, both on T and fighting for the final trick. In the end, Callum took the win with a broken fingers.
Four hours later, the second demo began, welcoming another hour of world class skateboarding. One real highlight from this demo came from Callum Bowran reliving a tale of woe with the crowd and calling on Tony to help him recreate one of their first sessions together and the devastating Game of Skate that ensued.
To round off the demo, the freestylers put together an impromptu Best Trick contest, with John Hanson casually stomping a perfect Ollie varial fingerflip, me sticking the cleanest stationary double fingerflip to crossfoot I will ever land, Simon making a two carousel pogo combo, Callum with a double fingerflip to rail, up to 50/50 with a carousel out and Tony powering through with a fakie double M80. No winner was declared, so if you were there, let us know your thoughts on the LateTricks facebook page!
Up until this point, we had avoided the inevitable “NASS rain”, however as the afternoon progressed, the clouds grew darker and we knew our luck was about to end. Almost on cue, as we sat down for our evening meal, the heavens opened. Unfortunately, this meant calling off our Saturday night demo, but it did provide the freestylers with a well deserved break and the opportunity to see the Sugarhill Gang perform!
The remainder of the evening was spent in the campsite, indulging in freestyle-heavy conversations and establishing a firm list of tricks that should never be allowed; including but not limited to monkeyflips, “all-in” pogos and the dreaded “foot down” casper!
Sufficiently drenched and exhausted, I returned to the hotel with the LateTricks team, hopeful that the rain would die down and the Sunday demos could go ahead.
Were you at this year’s demos? What were your highlights from the Saturday demos at this years event? Please head over to the LateTricks Facebook page and let us know!
Again, we’d like to say thank you to our incredible sponsors for this event: