As the fog lifted in Edmonton, Canada this morning, riders and spectators discovered a Hawrelak Park in full festival mode: the third stop of the 2017 FISE World Series is now fully underway! It’s under a shining sun and in fresh temperatures that the BMX and Mountain Bike riding areas saw their first qualifications take place, as the skateboarders went directly into competition mode with a popular Ollie contest.
Spectators of all ages gathered in Hawrelak Park not only to take a peek at the first tricks of the weekend but also to enjoy the festive atmosphere, with activities, a beer garden and numerous food trucks that offered an array of Canadian and international dishes.
The highlight of the day was the women’s UCI BMX Freestyle Park qualifiers, which will lead directly to finals tomorrow. The Columbian Macarena Perez positioned herself in first position today, shuffling the cards and taking the lead in front of a technical Hannah Robert (USA) and speedy Angie Marino (USA). On the men’s side of thing, the North American riders came in great numbers to challenge the current standings, which have Venezuela’s Daniel Dhers at the top, followed by Australia’s Brandon Loupos and Russia’s Konstantin Andreev.
Photo credit : ©cedricderodot, ©MatthieuMetivet
With the top 25 riders mountain bikers already qualified for tomorrow’s semi-finals, today’s event really put the locals under the spotlight, with a 100% Canadian qualification. This means we have good chances to see local talents put pressure on international riders during semi-finals. To be followed…
Talking about Canadians - they were many to take part in the Ollie Contest in the Skateboard Street Park, but it’s the American Gabriel Zander that took the win. Tomorrow may very well be different, as the skateboarders will show their Best Trick on the park.
The day ended in the Heritage Amphitheatre, with a pumped-up BMX Flat riders and crowd. After a 4th place at the Voodoo Jam last week in New Orleans, French flatlander Raphaël Chiquet kept his momentum going and qualified first, with three points advance on the second place qualifier, Chile’s Benjamin Hudson. A notable fact of today’s event Jake Leiva’s participation in the qualifiers. The BMX park rider managed to qualify 6th: that’s what we call being well-versed!
Motivated international athletes, inspired locals and a warm crowd to keep up the heat: all the elements are there for an intense weekend, on and off the riding areas!