Well everyone, it's that time year again. The 3rd annual Battle at the Barrics event is going down this Sunday, March 15th, at the North Star Bar and we here at the SMLTalk HQ could not be more excited. There is not an event in the city that means more to Boston skateboarders than this one. With flatground and ledge skating as the undisputed lifeblood of our skate scene, you would be hard pressed to find an honor higher than being the BATB champion. Even being considered for the competition is quite flattering, though it has been known to cause some sleepless nights for skaters terrified of duffing the obligatory first kickflip in front of all their friends, a moment they will surely never live down (right Eddie? ;) ). All that being said, we have very high hopes for this year's competition (besides Rojo) and we have a feeling this year will be the best yet for BATB. We're so excited in fact, we're dedicating this whole week to BATB analysis and predictions, starting first with skaters from the "West" bracket. Feel free to use this information in filling out your own bracket's or don't, because we're honestly not that well informed. Regardless of what happens, we're stoked for everyone that's competing this year and this stands as a small reminder as to why supporting your local skateshop is always so important: local shops do rad shit...duh.
Anyway, let the wild speculation begin, and we will announce our predicted winner this Friday! Good luck to everybody involved! (this excludes Rojo, he's totally fucked, and we're not willing to blow our bracket just 'cause he's skating for us.)
Participant: Rob "RoJo" Ridge
Riding For: smltalk.com
Weaknesses: Anxiety, food, doesn’t skate much
Notable Achievements: Kinda landed a switch hardflip once, can eat a whole pizza by himself in one sitting.
Predicted Placing: Dead Last
Participant: John Wisdom
Riding For: Concepts
Strengths: Can do pretty much every trick possible.
Weaknesses: They're all strengths too.
Notable Achievements: Switch tre flip noseslide, also recent line at Navy Yard is beyond comprehension.
Predicted Placing: Eliminated by Delaney in 2nd round
Participant: Brian Delaney
Riding For: RAW
Strengths: ‘Most Likely to be Seen at Eggs’ 2014
Weaknesses: “you know you’re high when you lose your phone” - Brian Delaney
Notable Achievements: Backside tailslide while drinking a Dunks hot coffee, varial heelflip nosegrind.
Predicted Placing: Eliminated by Dana in Semi-finals
Participant: Justin Callahan
Riding For: Pueblo 2012
Strengths: Skated to “Sara” by Fleetwood Mac in Palomar II
Weaknesses: Secretly hoping there will be a flatbar.
Notable Achievement: Filmed a part entirely in camo pants/fleece lined jeans, fakie ollie switch front blunt JP Park flatbar.
Predicted Placing: Eliminated by Delaney in the first round
Participant: Andrew Whittier
Riding For: Squeaks
Strengths: Always hyped, rolls good spliffs, switch pop shove its.
Weaknesses: But is he too nice?
Notable Achievements: Nollie frontside 180 switch 5-0 switch backside big spin out (wow), switch heelflip frontside 5-0.
Predicted Placing: Honestly too close to call.
Participant: Shawn Macmillan
Riding For: Corner Store
Strengths: Style, backside flips, trick selection
Weaknesses: No bump to bars in BATB ;)
Notable Achievements: Hardflip at Metals is honestly so fucked, all Eggs Report footage is gold.
Predicted Placing: As noted above, this is going to be one of the best games of this bracket so we're unfortunately unable to make a prediction at this time.
Participant: Dana Ericson
Riding For: RAW
Strengths: BATB 1 winner, BATB 2 finalist, one of the best skateboarders alive.
Weaknesses: Feels imprisoned by pants, could skate better in jean shorts.
Notable Achievement: Fakie tre switch backside tailslide, switch tre frontside tailslide, the list goes on.
Predicted Placing: Will reach finals.
Participant: Curt Daley
Riding For: Concepts
Strengths: You saw that Transworld Check Out right?
Weaknesses: Playing Dana first game (will be best game of entire bracket tho).
Notable Achievement: Once STARTED a line out at Eggs with a kickflip backside noseblunt. Switch backside tailslide gap to barrier, ollie by Biddy's is absolutely insane
Predicted Placing: Knocked out first round by Dana (basing this off Dana's winning legacy in this contest, going to be a VERY good game.)
So there you have it, the official SMLtalk West bracket. East coming Thursday.
Have you filled out yours?