Words: Effraim Catlow Photos: Adam Lievesley
The annual King of Concrete jam popped off a couple of weeks ago at Southsea Skatepark. The jam far exceeded my expectations to be honest, each year we try to add different elements in some way to create something fresh for the riders.
We have been trying to attract new riders to the park by offering coaching lessons, plus specific bike nights, a real entry level way into the sport and help generate new interest. It’s not a quick fix whatever the case… Inevitably people always ask, are there any events?
This year I said to my staff at the skatepark, what we really need is new blood coming into the scene. And it gives me great delight to say this year was all about the youngsters and next generation, so many rippers from the likes of Harry Gorman from Cardiff, Joey Doland from Prevail, Jack Thomas, Ben Hammond, Harvey Shorey, George Perris, Darry Hewitt, Chris Bates, the list goes on. It felt a little like the earlier years of KOC in a sense where riders like Anthony Pill, Mark Webb, Ben Wallace, Sam Foakes, Denis Wingham, all made their name.
With a fresh A-frame rail set up ready for the weekend, one of the highlights without a doubt was Harvey Shorey’s gap to tyres, nailing a gap bar ice right before to boot. The 2022 King of Concrete, Ben Hammond killed it on every event, loved his hang 5 over the hip. Jordan Clark destroyed the park contest on the Sunday, with a floated 1080 straight into flair double whip on the next wall.
This summer feels like some much needed grassroots events have helped introduce a new audience with events like the Romford Jam, KOC, Backyard Jams etc, and gave the next generation a chance to shine and experience what BMX is all about.
Thanks to all the sponsors, Stance, Total, Seventies, Entity, Steely Flats, The Lab, Flatmattersonline (plug plug), Grind BMX, Red Bull UK, and to Stevie B at Clicked for filming and making an awesome edit of the weekend. All the judges, Mike O’Connell and Matt at Entity especially. All the staff that worked tirelessly to make the event run smoothly. And of course all the riders that came down, last but not least thank you Ride UK for covering the event.
Same time next year!