The Burton scrap metal has established a reputation as one of the biggest and best-attended indoor competitions in the UK. This year, the organisers decided to focus all the time and energy which had previously gone into organising a tour on one single event - picking the Snow Centre at Hemel Hempstead for the venue. This helped guarantee that neither the riders or the crowd were split, and so the crew that gathered together in Hemel on the auspicious date of Friday 13th featured many of the UK's best riders.
The prize these peeps were competing for was a pot of £450 in cold hard cash, as well as a whole host of Burton, Analog and Gravis goodies. On top of this, the kind people at Rude Chalets would be giving the best unsponsored rider on the night one week's holiday with four of his or her mates. With the battle lines drawn, and the objectives carefully laid out, the contest commenced. The boys from Burton witnessed the whole affair, sending us the video (see bottom of the page) and this match report:
"The format was simple with a 1 hour practice going straight into a 2 hour qualifying jam session. The top 10 male and top 3 females would go through to the final at the end of the night.
Things kicked off with Burton European rider Wojtek Pawlusiak taking a few laps before the comp started to test the newly built kit. With an arsenal of tricks on pretty much every feature he quite literally assassinated the course even before it was open to the public. He continued to ride all night then took the reins as guest judge for the final and offered his expert opinion on what he thought of the UK’s best jib monkeys.
With utterly atrocious weather resulting in an accident on one of the motorways many people turned up a little late for practice. This included a mini bus full of Halifax locals captained by Wayne Taylor and The Tamworth Massive including Burton rider Chris Kightley and Analog jib technician Matt Higson. Eventually all the remaining people arrived for the qualifiers and the competition started to heat up. Stand out moments during the qualifiers had to be Shaun Millers frontflips off the top of the wallride, Ollie Plumley’s (text book) gap, to back lip on the down flat down and Tom Hunts 50/50, frontside 360 out of the Donkey Kink rail. The girls were stepping it up with mini shredder Jade Walsh attacking the ribbed gas pipes and Kirsty Taylor laying down some solid runs. At one point during the evening everyone’s attention turned to the bottom of the course where a
session started on the down bar and down-flat-down rail with Simon “super smoothy" Foster, Ross Needham aka The Wizard and fellow Snowdome local and Burton young gun, George Wooley.
After a fairly epic 2-hour jam session the finalists were announced. The top 10 males and top 3 females made their way to the top of the course and prepared for their two runs. The girls went first with local rider Helen dropping in and hitting the top of the wallride, Kirsty Taylor went for the safe option and laid down a steady run on the medium side of the course but no one could stop 12 year old Katie Ormerod who put down a run consisting of 180 onto the gas pipe, frontside wallride and front blunt, 270 out on the down bar to finish. A trick that she’d only learnt that evening!
The boys were next with Simon Foster completing a run consisting of a variety of change-up, tap out tricks reminiscent of his hero and look-alike Lucas Magoon. Ed charged through the course and went “balls out" on the down-flat-down corner rail trying to boardslide it. This resulted in him being catapulted a good 15 feet down the course and landing on his shoulder…Ouch! George Woolley marked his territory with probably one of the smoothest runs of the night including 50/50, change up, switch 50/50 on the corner bar to the amazement of the on looking spectators. But there was no stopping Castleford's Jonny Russell who, in all fairness, had owned the course all night.
His run went a little like this: frontside 5-0 on the Donkey Kink, Backside Boardslide through the corner bar and Backside 360, 5-0 on the bottom down bar. Easily the best run of the night and meant he would take home £250, armfuls of swag and the title of 2009 Burton Scrap Metal Champion. The prize giving took place in the bar with hundreds of onlookers who stayed on to watch the results, which went like this:
Top Three Men
1st Jonny Russell
2nd George Woolley
3rd Simon Foster
1st Katie Ormerod
Best Unsponsored Rider and Winner of the Rude Chalets Holiday
A massive thanks has to go out to Steve Terry who dedicated a good number of weekends to tirelessly constructing the beautifully constructed rails, and the park crew at The Snow Centre."