So you think you can Longboard Dance?
Longboard dance was honored in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, at the 17th of February, during the first edition of ‘So You Think You Can Longboard Dance?’ An event organized by Spots and Locals (part of Flow Provider).
Dancers from all Europe came to be part of this, multiple disciplines were represented like dance, trick and hippy jump. All of them under the lightshow of a concert hall, which is usually used for high voltage ambience. In another big hall there was a bright area for people of all levels to freely ride and meet.
The day started easy, the riders discovered for the first time the colorful dancer park, intensified with some banks and a quarter. This calm setting was soon replaced by an impressive mass of hyper longboard dancers. Riders became familiar with the obstacles to show off their talent. The competitors could register for free for the competitions and after a last spin they got ready for the first round. The sound system gave a spicy touch to what was going to be a massive concert ambiance longboard contest.
The first contest is Dancing with sessions of 60 seconds each. The level is already high, riders are precise and use high level movements. The pressure causes the first mistakes and the judges are there to not miss anything, the first elimination starts. Riders stay really concentrated and keep trying new combinations of tricks during the break. The second round starts, under the gazing eyes of the spectators, riders keep on impressing them by their style and originality. Few competitors are better than others and more and more the selection for the final at the end of the day gets clear.
After a show of such high level, everyone is impatient to see the best trick contest, the best trick of every competitor. The winner Sam Holding (Original) puts his style clearly out there, but the result was tight.
At this stage of the day the space for about 700 spectators was packed. Everyone heard of a hippy jump contest with a world record attempt. The competition started at the height of 80cm and people jumped while doing tricks. At 1.20m some couldn’t jump high enough and some were still doing 360 over the pole. At 1.30m the amount of contestants started to be reduced seriously. Spectators held their breath at each jump. At 1.32m the Guinness World Record height was right in front of them. More riders kept passing it easily, so the pole was raised to a new world record height of 1.33m. This was also passed by more contestants and Steffen Kstr (DE, Donkey Town custom longboards) made sure it was official according to the Guinness rules, by jumping it on a skateboard. Nice detail; he never did ride a skateboard before.
The pole was raised to 1.40 and 2 competitors were left. At 1.50m only Steffen passed the pole, but even after multiple attempts he didn’t land it. So the host was announcing the end of the hippy jump contest. Suddenly the crowd started to scream, without telling anyone, Steffen made a last attempt and jumped an impressive 1.50m! The same height the now injured Paul van Ginkel (NL, the Boardfather) jumped at Tang Tang. So next year it’s for sure going to be a close call between the both of them. But for now, Steffen owns the Guinness world record of highest Hippy jump!
During the final of the Dancing contest eventually only the 3 best were left, all from different countries, Belgian Andrei from Original, Frenchman Lotfi from Loaded and Luutse, Dutch favourite and big boss of Simple himself. These three are not used to compete each other so that made this final extra exciting. After two 90 second rounds everyone was wondering who was going to be on the highest step on the podium. The jury had a difficult job because each style is really different and technically all 3 longboarders were impressive.
The final result of the Dancing contest is:
1. Lotfi Lamaali (FR, Loaded, Orangatang)
2. Andrei Churakov (BE, Original)
3. Luutse Brouwer (NL, Simple, the Boardfather)
1. Femke Bosma (NL, Simple)
2. Annemieke Wenting (NL)
3. Kim Klunder (NL, the Boardfather)
The other results:
1. Luutse Brouwer (NL, Simple, the Boardfather)
2. Lennart van de Peppel (NL)
1. Sam Holding (UK, Original)
2. Sven Willy (DE, Fibretec, Caliber, Volante)
1. Steffen Kstr (DE, Donkey Town custom longboards)
2. Tied between 3
Maarten Frouws (NL, the Boardfather)
Wybe Pieter Feenstra (NL, the Boardfather)
Paul van Ginkel (NL, the Boardfather)
With these result all contest combined made a draw between The Netherlands and France for the country title. So both countries had to select one rider for one best trick. It was not surprising these riders were Lotfi and Luutse. Lotfi Lamaali convincingly claimed the victory with his trick and thereby FRANCE won the country contest, the golden exchange trophy board!
And so the first and certainly not last edition of ‘So You Think You Can Longboard Dance’ organized by Spots and Locals was over, so far the biggest contest in the Netherlands. A clear successful event that confirms the personal investment of the European international longboard family.
The event was sponsored and made possible by:
The contest was co-organized with the Boardfather.
Text by Bianca Kersten. All pictures by Alexandre Ulrich