Laying On The Sauce
One of the critical spots to mention was the fence gap to flat down flat at the University of Southern Maine. The latest storm was weeks prior so all our snow was actually just chopped up ice from a nearby plow pile. We had just finished setting up our short but high speed inrun. I had taken a few slams on it and worked my knee pretty good. Alex hadn’t even hit the thing yet when we saw a security patrol coming our way.
The exchange as always started with accusations coming from the security guard. The standard phrases like: “you can’t do that here” and “this is a huge liability” were thrown at us. We stayed calm and reasonable in our typical fashion. We pleaded our case which was something to the tune of: “We don’t want to harm anyone or any property.” “We will clean up when we are done.” “We have invested so much work and are so close, please just let us finish.”
To our amazement this particular security person actually heard what we were saying and offered a compromise. They would leave for an hour to finish their rounds for the night. Then they would return around 12:30am to check on the location and make sure that we had packed up and left. This subtle gap between a full on kick out and a free pass to stay as long as we want was all we needed.
Alex landed his trick and so did I. Randy got multiple photos of each of us. The spot was somehow a success despite the conditions being literal ice chunks and cop cars. Our ambitions were reinforced and we continued on our goal of filming full parts that year.
The end of the 2016 season
As the 2016 season was winding down, we made a trip to New Jersey with the Buck90 crew. We hit a few more spots around NH and Maine with them. This left myself and Alex with about 15 spots each under our belts. Which meant we both had the bare minimum to make a street part.
It was a long summer last year. Felt like we were both about ready to just unload our parts as individuals as many riders do. But to tell our stories separately in this short form really didn’t seem like the right move for either of us.
We each had some solid clips. But we both wanted more and we didn’t want to just be another couple solo parts in the mix. Alex and I decided at the end of the summer to save our shots for the dreaded 2-year project. At the same time we made the decision that we would release our parts together in some sort of movie.
It was a disaster! (no it wasn’t). All of our sponsors dropped us when they found out we weren’t going to produce a part that year (no they didn’t). We lost all support and hope for the coming season (honestly, no one even noticed). Neither of us dropped an edit after filming some of the best work we have ever done. It felt like we were going to see some sort of reaction but we never did. We got to lay low and secretly stack a bunch more clips for one more season.
The struggle was real
The winter of 2017 went a little bit better than the previous in terms of weather. By no means was it an epic season, but we got enough snow to get after it. This time it was the other side of the coin that got us. We found ourselves getting the boot, running out of time and revisiting spots more often than what we were used to. The struggle was beginning to be real again.
It was february and we had been to the triple rail line 2 times already that season with no clips to show for it. This spot was epic. I mean it had a flat rail to wall ride, right into a downbar, followed immediately by a long kinked rail. So much potential, but so many variables too. I had already hit a crazy roof drop to rail that morning with Zach Normandin. We both got a bit broken from it but decided to at least build this one anyway.
After building was almost done on the QP, Zach’s bruised tail bone was getting to him and he had to bail. That was a bummer at the moment, but when you see the clip and the bail he got earlier that day you will understand fully. After finishing up the build alone, Mackenzie Hennessey and Ty Chatigny joined to help film and run the winch. Alex showed up soon after and we got started.
The pizza was delivered right when we were about done setting up. We mowed through that cheesy circle of crust and pepperoni faster than ever. With grease on our fingers we pushed record on the cameras and grabbed the winch handle. After nearly a month since we first hit this spot, we were finally getting it. Tricks were landed, and clips and photos were captured.
I landed myself the combo on the upper line and then managed a backside 50/50 on the long Kink. Alex got the long kink rail shortly after. He would later return a 4th time to the same spot and get his 2 rail line on the upper features. This spot by far was the most invested we had ever been in one location. In the end it was worth every 2 hr drive to get there, and the slices of Zaaa were just an added bonus.