Dez Maarsen – Freestyle Now interview

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One of our newest Freestyle Now squad members, Dez Maarsen recently hit up some large bmx flatland contests in Europe last month where he was placing consistently. We caught up with Dez to seek out some information about the contests his new sponsor hook up with St Martin, his first meeting with Paul Chamberlain and how to talk to girls.

Dez Maarsen 180 body varial photo -bramberkien

Dez Maarsen learnt this 180 body varial 7 years ago, still one of his favorite tricks – photo Bram Berkien

Congratulations on getting on the St Martin team, what does this mean for you?
Yes really stoked! It’s a big honor to be added to their team and to ride and represent their new parts! The new parts look amazing and I can’t wait to ride them. It’s definitely great to have a sponsor that makes parts that fits my riding! I’m happy St Martin is sticking to the pure flatland parts and I get to promote them with my riding.

Can you tell us about St Martin, who they are and what they do?
St Martin is a BMX Flatland brand from France and have been a big player! It was started by Manu Massabova and Alain Massabova is the team manager now. Alex Jumelin has been the face for the brand for a while now. They have been a big player in flatland for quite some years now. They have a large team consisting of new riders like Owen Bohn from Mendoza in Argentina and some OG riders like Jesse Puente from the flatland fugitives fame and Chase Gouin who is one of the originators of modern flatland riding as well as Aude Cassagne from France, she has an good style. St Martin make two styles of frames plus they have forks, handle bars, cranks, sprockets, stems and pegs. Its a good all round package of product on offer. I’m really happy to be riding some quality flatland equipment.

Why do you ride flatland?
When I started riding BMX, Flatland came pretty natural to me. I picked up the tricks pretty quick and just got hooked on the feeling of learning new tricks. The first BMX riders I met where flatland riders. They showed me which tricks to learn and the lifestyle around it, visiting jams and contest. I just fell in love with flatland and I still love it till this day!

Dez Maarsen Sosh Freestyle Cup 2016 - bmx flatland

Dez spinning at the Sosh Freestyle Cup that took place on the beach in Marseille France – photo Melissa Zucchiatti

You recently attended some rather large competitions which ones were they?
Yes it was a busy months of June and July for contests! There were 3 contests in 3 weeks and besides that I had to coordinate another one here in The Netherlands the day before the Cologne contest in Germany. The first contest was the Matthias Dandois Open in Marseille France for the Sosh Freestyle Cup. It was great vibe with a stage at the beach and just good times hanging around with everyone. I rode pretty solid. Tried some stuff on the back wheel for more variation and had a struggle with my x ft hakfpacker. But yeah amazing times here with all the riders. I got 9th eventually.
Then there was BMX Cologne in Germany. A contest I’ve been to since I started riding Flatland. After last year’s absence I was really stoked they returned the contest with the bumper car area (one of the best contest built flatland floors). I managed to pull a no touch run and pulled the final banger!! My signature 360 pressure flip to inside halfpacker! Have wanted to do that at Cologne for a longtime so that was definitely the highlight of the competitions I went to. Ended up in 4th place! So stoked! Only 0.3 points difference with Matthias and I would have made it on the podium!
The week after it was time for the BMX World Championship hosted by the IBMXFF in the UK near Bristol as part of the N.A.S.S. festival. It was the first time I went to the UK for a contest and the whole trips was epic. Unfortunately I didn’t ride the way I wanted to in the final, but still got a 6th place, a decent ranking.

Dez Maarsen - BMX Cologne in Germany 2016

Dez Maarsen took out a 4th place at the recent contest in Cologne Germany – photo Melissa Zucchiatti

Dez Maarsen - BMX flatland World Championship hosted by the IBMXFF at the NASS festival

Dez Maarsen place 6th at the IBMXFF World Championship at the N.A.S.S. festival.

How do you prepare for contests?
At every session I do I try to do my contest tricks. Sometimes I mix them up within combo’s and just freestyle with the combo’s. When I go to the contest I prepare a run in my mind and only focus on those tricks when I’m at a contest. I make sure my tricks are hard and mostly original and dialed enough for the contest. To dial them I try my contest tricks on different surfaces.

Do you follow a certain training regime leading up to contests?
This year was pretty hectic taking care of the contest in The Netherlands, doing shows and working on other stuff. I usefully have a regime just to ride 4 times a week, eat healthy and not go to any party’s the weeks before the contest. I’ll definitely gonna be doing this for Flat Ark since I will be able to focus the weeks before that without taking care of other obligations.

How important are contest placings to you?
I think for every competing rider the placing matters. And I always strive to get a high placing, but when I’m at the contest I don’t worry about what placing I might end up. I just focus on making sure I pull the combo’s I prepare for the contest, since in the end as a flatland rider it’s the only thing you have control over. The past years I’ve been putting in a lot of work in dialing some of my hardest tricks in, with the hope to pull them in a contest and see progression in my contest runs. That’s my main strive in a contest.

What does the rest of 2016 have for you, what contests are you looking at attending and do you have some new combos in the works?
My next contests will be King of Paris and Flat Ark in October. In the meantime I will busy with a big show project also in October. I definitely will be working on some new combo’s before that contest! Then I want to head to another contest in November and then work on new tricks and want to bring out a new edit!

The modern trend in flatland at the moment seems to be either you are a front or back wheel rider, where do you fit into that?
For the past years front wheel has definitely been my specialty. However I’ve also been working the back wheel and it has been really fun. Definitely feel I have still a lot of tricks to learn on the back wheel and I like the challenge.

How did you get into flatland bmx riding?
At the beginning I wanted to ride Freestyle, but it was really hard for me. I was just a small kid with a heavy bike. Then the first BMX riders I met where flatland riders and I was amazed by the tricks. Also we didn’t have any skateparks in my hometown, so flatland was the only option. Back then we were also with a nice group of about 5 or 6 flatland riders, so there was always someone to ride with. Also there was Flatground in Amsterdam which was the first BMX event I went to and the vibe was amazing.

 

Dez Maarsen and his final “no touch” run at the BMX Cologne contest in Germany

Who do you ride with on a regular basis?
My brother Bodean, Gino Stuart, Jorrit van Drumpt and Erik Hogers.

Who would you like to ride with on a regular basis?
Dub and Benjamin Hudson!

What is life like living in Holland, is there a lot of cultural differences to other parts of Europe?
The one thing that is really a Dutch thing is that everybody rides bikes! That’s something that only happens in Holland. Besides that the Dutch are very outspoken and straightforward. Also I do feel the Dutch are more tolerant. However sports don’t play a big roll, accept for when you play football its hard work to make it as a professional athlete.

Do you have any advice on how to talk to girls?
Let them do the talking.

What do you do for income/work?
I’ve been running my show and clinic company for 7 years now and at the moment I’m working on this pretty much full time. Don’t need to have side job at the moment.

You recently helped organized the flatland contest at the soul contest in Amsterdam, can you tell us how that can about?
Action/Urban Sports are finally getting more recognition in Holland. Amsterdam decided that they also wanted to put themselves on the map in supporting action/urban sports, so last April they hosted the Amsterdam Urban. Soulcycle was in charge of the BMX competitions and we put down a pretty good flatland contest and next year we are planning on making it bigger!

When was the first time you met fellow Freestyle Now squad member Paul Chamberlain, and can you tell us a bit about that first encounter?
I saw Paul for the first time at the BMX Worlds in Cologne 2004. I think we both competed in expert class. That was when he was still living in the UK. The next time I talked to Paul was I think at the Red Bull Circle of Balance party. I was really drunk and probably said with a shitty English accent impersonation some quote from Get Him to the Greek (a movie with Russell Brand, which pretty much looks like Paul). And I think the other times I ran into him where also in Japan and me being drunk and asking him to say “stroke the furry wall”. The last time I saw him he told me he finally watched it and said it was actually pretty funny.

You are currently doing studies, what are you studying and why?
After high school I only focused on riding for 4 years. Then at one point I was motivated to start to study for event and artist management, since that was pretty much my interest back then. For the past few years I started to focus again on my career since I didn’t have to attend any classes anymore. However I do feel it’s time to finish and get my bachelor in economics. Studying still has never really been my thing, so I’ll be so relieved when I’m done!!

Is it hard to be original in bmx flatland?
It’s the hardest thing to do in flatland! And flatland is already a very hard thing to do. But in order to make it to the top you have to be original so you definitely have to challenge yourself and be creative and be really hard on yourself. However in order to be original you have learn other tricks first. Still people are coming with new tricks so it’s great that see that flatland is still evolving.

 

Dez ended up in 4th place in Cologne with a flawless run plus he got to pull this banger, his signature 360 pressure flip!(in this video)The level of riding was insane.

Can you tell us anything about the flatland scene in Australia?
As far as I can see there is a small but loyal flatland scene in Australia. With DownUnderGround making sure there are events where the riders meet up. I think events are the most important thing in flatland to make sure riders get together and motivate each other. However I hope to see some young riders coming from Australia soon! I see that Australia is doing really good in BMX Park so why not any new blood in Flatland.

In which direction do you see flatland moving?
In contest way’s I think we’re getting to a system that works the best for the riders. The past years there have been so many different contest formats. Besides the contest I see that we’re actually busy with the future of flatland, which is a good thing. I think we need to grow the sport and have everyone feel involved. About flatland riding its self I don’t know what kind of things we gonna see. I just hope that every rider will challenge himself to progress, to see their riding as their identity and an expression.

In 20 years time where will Dez Maarsen be?
Hopefully Flatland will be involved in the Olympics and I get to be a coach.

Function or fashion, Which do you choose, And why?
There have been some good changes in flatland like the double diamond frame. Also the bikes become stronger because of that. However I still need a functional flatland bike for my tricks. Flatland is already hard enough. So yes function is first then fashion.

Possessions, do you have too many or do you try to live without many?
Collect memories not things right! I didn’t grow up with much stuff so I’m still not possessive. Just live with the things I need. However I do have trouble with throwing away stuff!

Shout outs and thank yous?
Yes I went to thank my mom for always being supportive with my decisions in life! Want to thank my dad for pushing me to aim for the highest things. My brothers for being really amazing guys! And everyone that saw potential in me and gave me a chance to presume my dreams! And big thanks to Freestyle Now for the support and the good questions!

 

Dez in his secret training facility working on his contest runs

 

 

Dez working on some more diversity with this back wheel combo

 

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Welcome new Freestyle Now reserves squad member – Jarrod Murfit

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Freestyle Now would like to welcome to the reserves squad, bmx rider Jarrod Murfit. Jarrod has been working at a few of the Freestyle Now events over the past year and we have seen his expertise at these events. His enthusiasm and abilities to help others roll out the rad has been and will be a great asset to Freestyle Now and to the participants at our events. Freestyle Now is all about inclusion and diversity and Jarrod defiantly ticks the boxes in this field. Be on the lookout for Jarrod at our skatepark coaching sessions and competitions. He is always keen to get a high five from crew. Welcome to the Freestyle Now reserves squad Jarrod. Be sure to give his profile a look over to get a bit more of an insight into who Jarrod Murfit is.

Jarrod Murfit at Merredin skatepark

 

 

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South Hedland Skatepark Competition – Round 13 Freestyle Now Western Australian Skatepark Competition Series

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Round 13 of the Freestyle Now Western Australian Skatepark Series took place at the South Hedland skatepark. The day was hot and so was the competition. It was a great turn out with over 40 competitors all wanting to roll out the rad. The South Hedland skatepark is one of the biggest in the southern hemisphere and the fun that can be had is limitless. At all of the Freestyle Now skatepark competitions there were two runs for the competitors with round 1 in the street plaza section and round 2 in the open combie bowl. At all of the Freestyle Now skatepark competitions there are three classes for competitors to enter, beginners (younger and still learning), intermediates (competitors with some good skills) and the open class (consistent and dials tricks) in the three disciplines scooter, skateboard and bmx. There is also a girl’s class to help encourage more girls to enter. The progression of the skatepark users in Port Hedland is growing at a rapid rate but with such an awesome skatepark it’s easy to see why. We would like to thank all the skatepark users for rolling out the rad at the competition and we would also like to thank the Town of Port Hedland as well as our supporters, Colony bmxSacrifice scooters and the 4 skateboard Co.

Freestyle Now South Hedland skatepark competition 13th August 2016 - Anthony Dann

Anthony Dann has progressed so much over the last year. This front scooter helped him take out the 2nd place in scooters open.

Freestyle Now South Hedland skatepark competition 13th August 2016

Clockwise from top left – Tory Burns is now back in South Hedland and has got another bike and ripping it up at the skatepark, first place in bmx intermediates - Kyal Randazzo made the 45 minute bus trip from Port Hedland to South Hedland with his friend Kohi Poharama, a trip that takes 10 minutes in a car, to compete in the skatepark competition. First place in skateboard intermediates and a new skate deck from the 4 skateboard company –  Jasmin Kilmartin showed great courage and entered the competition. a few laps around the open bowl and a few fly out and she took out a first place in the girls only class. Getting more girls into the activities would be great – Levi Ashby was consistent with his tricks and skills and took out 1st place in the scooter intermediate class.

More photos can be found on the facebook page here.

South Hedland skatepark competition – 13th August 2016 – Round 13 Freestyle Now Western Australian Skatepark Series – Official results

Girls – 1st Jasmin Kilmartin, 2nd Kimi Grace

Scooter beginner – 1st Latrell McPhee, 2nd Nate Hogan, 3rd Ty Kilmartin, 4th Nicolas Galovic, 5th Tremaine Armstrong, 6th Ryan Diver, 7th Alexander Tressider, 8th Danaos Radovanovich, 9th Darren Roebuck, 10th Brayden Murphy, 11th Robert Drage, 12th Ethan Gaskin, 13th Haza Scully, 14th Toby Fuller, 15th Ethan Dawn, 16th Joshua Corbett.

Scooter intermediate – 1st Levi Ashby, 2nd Ian Drage, 3rd Ethan Notis, 4th Kane McPhee, 5th Tyler Brown, 6th Jimmy Woods, 7th Jamal Doyal, 8th Bodhi Gregs, 9th Randin McCumstie, 10th Ethan James, 11th Brenton Kerrod, 12th Jordan Coulfer

Scooter open – 1st Jacob Wise, 2nd Anthony Dann, 3rd Azahary Razali, 4th Cody Broome

Skateboard beginner – 1st Ty Kilmartin, 2nd Bodhi Gregs

Skateboard intermediate – 1st Kyal Randazzo, 2nd Kohi Poharama, 3rd Jacob Wise

Bmx beginner – 1st Bodhi Gregs, 2nd Ty Kilmartin

Bmx intermediate – 1st Tory Burns, 2nd Jacob Wise

 

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Freestyle Now bmx stunt shows – Northam Avon Decent festival

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Freestyle Now recently were at the Northam Avon Decent festival to performed some great entertaining bmx stunt shows with many rad tricks taking place. Once Freestyle Now set up the portable jump box the we began to roll out the rad to the masses. The weather was not the best and rain came towards the end of the night and the show could not go on. Freestyle Now squad member  Shaun Jarvis was joined by reserves squad members Brady Thomas and Matt Adkins along with our recruits rider Jack Carwardine. Long time shredder Ryan Aquilina was also invited along to throw down some of his trade mark radness.

Freestyle Now bmx stunt show - Northam Avon decent festival August 2016 - Matt Adkins cannonball

Matt Adkins firing out a cannonball over the Freestyle Now jump box

Make sure you check out our coming events page to see where the next Freestyle Now bmx stunt shows will be going down. If you would like this type of great entertainment at your next event please get in contact with Freestyle Now with your requirements.

Freestyle Now bmx stunt show - Northam Avon decent festival August 2016

Clockwise from top left – Ryan Aquilina 360 Xup – Jack Carwardine hitting an Xup – Brady Thomas love his nac nac’s. Styles for miles – Jack Carwardine getting a close up look at Brady Thomas as he performs a Toboggan jump over Jack’s bike.

More photos can be found on our facebook page here

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Freestyle Now – Tom Price skatepark coaching workshop

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Freestyle Now recently headed to Tom Price for the Nameless festival to host a skatepark coaching workshop session. Freestyle Now squad members Ben Thomas, Mitch Harris and Jarrod Murfit did an amazing job helping the workshop participants learn new skills and skatepark etiquette. The participants also got to be involved in some skatepark games and mini competitions to win prizes. Ben, Mitch and Jarrod, also dropped into the Paraburdoo skatepark for a quick roll before flying back to Perth. Freestyle Now hosts many skatepark coaching workshop at many various skateparks, be sure to check our coming events page to see where the next one is you can attend. The below video was put together by Jarrod Murfit. Give it a watch to see the squad rolling out the rad.

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KARRATHA SKATEPARK COMPETITION – ROUND 12 FREESTYLE NOW WESTERN AUSTRALIAN SKATEPARK SERIES

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Round 12 of the Freestyle Now Western Australian Skatepark Series took place in Karratha at the Nichol West skatepark. There was a good turnout of competitors and spectators for late afternoon evening competition. There were a few familiar faces missing but it was good to see Nixon Osborne skating like he does. We would like to thank the City of Karratha as well as our supporters, Colony bmxSacrifice scooters and the 4 skateboard Co

Karratha skatepark competition - Freestyle Now July 2016

Photos from the day can be found on our facebook page here

Nichol West skatepark competition – 29th July 2016 – Round 12 Freestyle Now Western Australian Skatepark Series – Official results

Scooter beginner – 1st Kaedon Archer, 2nd Zac Howie, 3rd Jayden Walsh, 4th Hamiora Hiraki, 5th Samuel Clark, 6th Kray Reeves, 7th Dylan Wood, 8th Carter Armstrong, 9th Joshua Featherstone, 10th Zach Tattam, 11th Oscar Doherty, 12th Jordan Dremel, 13th Flynn Armstrong, 14th Mason Kickett, 15th Cooper Wells, 16th Grady Turner

Scooter intermediate – 1st Brock Guymer, 2nd Connor Ingram, 3rd Dakotah Chapman, 4th Leigh Trost, 5th Nixon Osborne

Skateboard beginner – 1st Liam Eykyn, 2nd Hamiora Hiraki, 3rd Joel Williams

Skateboard intermediate – 1st Nixon Osborne, 2nd Jarrod Dewacht, 3rd Harry Eykyn

Bmx beginner – 1st Cooper Dunne

Bmx intermediate – 1st Jesse Lyon, 2nd Damen Sloss, 3rd Miles McFarlane

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Ben Thomas – Freestyle Now interview

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Ben Thomas has been on the Freestyle Now squad since the beginning of this year. Although he had been attending many of our coaching workshops and competitions prior to then as a coach and judge. Recently Ben attended the Extreme Barcelona contest in Spain for the International Scooter World titles where he took home the 2nd place, in a very close competition. For the past five years Ben has placed in the top five at the international scooter world titles. After the contest in Spain Ben traveled to Helsinki and Prague and rode a few skateparks and street spots. We caught up with Ben while he prepares to head off to California for this year’s 2016 Pro Scooter Series.

Ben Thomas at Helsinki - Freestyle Now scooter

Congratulations on your 2nd place at the worlds in Barcelona, how do you feel about that?
Thank you! I feel stoked! is probably the word to describe it at best, I feel like a big boost of confidence has rose up within my riding and just super stoked on it all.

How close were the points between 1st and 2nd at the worlds?
In the final I got 86 points and Jordan Clarke got 88.6. It was only 2.6 point the difference. Yeah very close. Too close.

Did you feel disappointed from missing out by such a small amount?
I guess so in a way, but also not really, because I know I tried my best. I gave everything that I had.

Do you think you could have done anything different in you run to get more points or don’t you look at it in that way?
For sure, I think there is certain tricks that I did or could have done to better my run, but I look at it as I did my best on the day and in the moment so I’m happy! But there is always room for improvement!

Can we ask how much did you win for taking the 2nd place?
I actually forgot to send my details for the prize money, so I’m still waiting on the prize money. I think it adds up to a couple thousand dollars though.

How important is that placing within the scooting world?
I think it is very important, because I have held onto top 5th place in the worlds for the past 5 years, then bringing back 2nd again, last time was back in 2012. I feel it helps to remind people that I am still one of the best out there.

How was this recent trip like compared to other trips you been on?
This trip was one of the best for sure, so many sick times with all the boys. Got to experience many things as usual when you travel, just great bunch of memories to have! I think because scooting is growing so fast that this year was more special, scooting is huge now and to have a trip of that caliber and to place that high in the competition was just incredible.

Can you tell us a bit about your trip to Helsinki and Prague?
Okay, so my trip to Helsinki and Prague was cool. Never been to those countries before so was a fresh experience. Prague was a very cool place to explore, did a bit of sightseeing as well as riding. Love the old buildings and culture there, very cool. On the first day in Prague we rode an awesome street plaza, built from old limestone ledges and things. We also hosted a high jump competition and best trick on this down rail, was cool to see the locals get involved! Throughout the rest of the days we just rode different spots, filmed and had an awesome trip! I was there for 5 days. Was a great experience to see their culture and would be keen to go back for sure.
Okay now Finland. Finland was really cool! One of the most chilled and hectic trips that I have been on to date for sure. The person I stayed with Jani, was such a cool guy, awesome to hang with! Almost every day there was at least 5 of us just mobbing the streets, skateparks, riding, filming and having a great time! I tried some Awesome Finish foods like the lollies and meals, they were sick. One thing that was crazy about Finland was the daylight in summer, explains the hectic part of the trip haha! So it was summer time when I went over, so the sun over there stays up 22hrs of the day. Which is crazy to me, and I’m sure to anyone that isn’t used to it. You could squeeze a lot in the day, but you’re energy was depleted like crazy, you were up doing stuff for so long. Defiantly a trip to remember also. Was there for about 5 days as well. Would head back for sure!

How do you see Scooter progression changing in the next year?
I think it will change quite a bit, more nitro circus, more competitions, everything will just progress more in ways that I don’t even know yet haha. The future holds many possibilities, as long as we are growing with it the possibilities are endless.

How do you combat the pressure of learning new tricks to stay up with the world best?
It’s really hard, a lot of effort is needed to stay at that peak condition, like practice, making sure you’re tricks are consistent and having new things to throw out there to stand out. Takes much more work that people think to perfect.

You’re heading off to America soon, what are you going there for?
Yes I am heading of to L.A. California, for this year’s 2016 Pro Scooter Series, once again massive prize pool and awesome parks around the world.

How much pressure gets put on you from your sponsors to stay on top, or is it more your own pressure?
It’s probably more your own pressure, I mean, obviously you’re sponsors want you to go well but they never force me or say anything towards me that is of a standard that I have to do. It’s always on me how I perform and that can be quite a bit to deal with.

When will he be doing a flair off the counter of his local maccas?
Never hahaha, don’t buy Maccas.

What are your thoughts on scooters in the nitro world games?
I think that it was a great idea to help promote and showcase the sport, how quickly the sport is growing and to show people what we can do, it’s not just a kids toy anymore.

Would you like to jump that size of jumps?
Yes I would like to give it a go! For sure.

Who is your favorite scooter rider/s?
I don’t have a favorite scooter rider hahah, if I was to have a favorite rider Capron Funk would probably have to be the one, you just never know what’s coming up in his comp runs, he will surprise you with such cool looking tricks and such different tricks also, good to see

Were you happy with your run at the Australian titles and your placing? (14th place)
I was fairly happy with my runs not my placing though.

What do you think of competitions?
Competitions will always be competitive, I am a very competitive person when it comes to sports, that’s what drives me and keeps me at the top. I feel that competitions need to have a level of standard with judging and with the facility that they choose the competition to be held at, it affects the riders massively if they are not organised right.!

Aggression at skateparks towards scooters still seems common, do you think that it’s a scooter problem or just an age of participants problem, what’s your take on that?
Scooters have always been given grief at skateparks, I feel that it’s more of an age dilemma, kids not knowing what they are doing at a skatepark can make everyone’s day miserable that are just trying to have a good time and ride the facility. I get annoyed sometimes when there is hardly anyone at the skatepark that doesn’t have skatepark etiquette. I think that the more people knew about what they were supposed to be doing on the park the better it would be.

Ben Thomas at Helsinki - street spot flair - Freestyle Now scooter

Ben’s flair game is strong on this rad street spot in Helsinki

You get to go to lots of the Freestyle Now coaching sessions, how do you think your presents at a session impacts on the young riders?
I think that my presence is a big impact and influence towards them as a rider or a role model, I try to keep it as real with them as I can and be a good role model towards them. I feel it gives them a good sense of direction for what you can achieve within the sport and that you can become known also. Awesome feeling.

I know you might not like this question because you must get asked a gazillion times but what’s your hardest trick?
I feel that the hardest trick I have landed was a few years back when I landed my 720 Backflip! That to me was fairly insane hahah.

How did you get into scooters?
One day me and a group of mates decided to buy some cheap scooters from I think it was Big W or something, one of the first Blade scooters. Anyways we decided to buy them to ride to school just for abit of fun transport to get to school, this was when I was about 12. We noticed there was a skatepark down the road, like literally less than 50m. So we decided to go there after school and try it out, then we stared to really catch a feel for it, so we decided to leave home extra early to get a morning session in before class started. Then it just took off from there.!

How were you able to climb to the top of the pro ladder?
I don’t really know how to answer this question, I guess just my determination and push that helped me to get through it all I think. I had an ankle injury at the start of it all, so just had to push through that and then just keep ahead of it all.

Can you tell us about your line of signature parts with grit scooters?
Yes defiantly. My current line of Signature products with Grit Scooters consist of my Ben Thomas Signature Deck & Ben Thomas signature Bars! My Signature deck is a very light and but a durable product, coming in at 4.5 inch wide and 19.75 inch long. 6061 heat treated alloy, with a 3 Degree concavity. With the bars also very light weight and durable, they come in at 24 inch wide by 26 inch high. They are made from a new hydro formed alloy, to give them extra strength within maintaining their extreme light weight. I will also be releasing a signature full scooter within the future, so keep an eye out.

Ben Thomas at Helsinki - DIY - Freestyle Now scooter

Leg wrap at a DIY park in Helsinki, possibly at 9pm at night?

Are you a glass half empty or half full kind of guy?
I’m a glass half full kind of guy for sure, more towards the side of an optimist, always try and see the good in a situation or an opportunity in every difficulty.

What advice would you give to someone who one day wants to become pro?
I would say to them, you can do it, as long as you stay strong and will minded, keep practicing and stay passionate towards something that you want to achieve, you can achieve it. For sure.

Do you have any shouts outs or thanks to give?
Shout out to Grit Scooters for keeping me out there doing stuff in the world and to all my sponsors, Freestyle Now of course! Gain Protection & Tortoise pads for keeping it real

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FREESTYLE NOW AT FLATARK 2015 – KOBE JAPAN

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Back in October 2015 Freestyle Now squad members Shaun JarvisPaul Chamberlain and Lee Kirkman traveled to Japan to attend Flatark, the final stop in the flatland world series of contests. Shaun and Lee competed in the competition and placed quite well considering the level of competition. Shaun placed 31st out of 46 riders in the expert class and Lee placed 52nd out of 68 riders in the open class. The three riders started their 10 day journey in Tokyo for a few days then took the bullet train to Kobe, the host city for Flatark and then finished the trip off in Osaka. Shaun made a video from every day showing all the rad things they did, saw and rode and had made it into one long video. Its worth watching to get a scope of the fun that a trip like this can be and to see some great riding from Shaun, Paul and Lee and a bunch of other riders.

Paul Chamberlain Shaun Jarvis lee Kirkman at Flatark 2015 - freestyle now bmx flatland
These three guys above Paul, Shaun and Lee sent in a few words about their travel experience read on and be inspired to venture outside of your city. This year Shaun Jarvis and Paul Chamberlain are confirmed to be venturing off to Kobe to once again experience all things Flatark.

Shaun Jarvis put together a video from each of the 10 days he was away in Japan and then put them all into one long journey video. Check it out to see Freestyle Now rolling out the rad in Japan.

Flatark contest footage from Lee Kirkman and Shaun Jarvis

Shaun Jarvis
This was my second time attending Flatark and venturing out of Australia. Again it was so great and can’t wait to go back. To see all of the international friend again in person (not via facebook) will be great. The trip was so awesome, making a video of each day’s radness was kinda hard but I think I managed to get it all in there. I know it long but there was just so much we did it had to be included. It will be great memories to look back on in the next 20 years for sure. I was really stoked on my contest run, it was a bit sketchy at the start but I sorted that at the end. Im really looking forward to heading back to Kobe and riding Meriken Park, it’s such an inspiring location. For 2016 it looks like I will be travelling with more Australian crew which should make the trip another great experience. Watch the video I made to see how much fun we all had.

Shaun Jarvis at Flatark 2015 mid contest run - freestyle now bmx flatland

 Shaun Jarvis in the middle of his contest run at Flatark, check the contest video for his full run.

Paul Chamberlain
I go to Japan every year for FlatArk. It’s the biggest competition in the world right now. I love Japan, and not a single day goes by that I don’t think about riding at Meriken Park in Kobe. It’s the best spot, the best crew and the best vibe. The contest goes off too. That all sounds cliche, but whenever I’m tired at home I think about going back there and it motivates me to ride more. I don’t even enter the contest, but it makes me want to focus on riding and see what’s possible. Amongst all of the busy busy here right now it’s easy to lose sight of that and FlatArk on the calendar helps me sustain that purpose. Thanks Ucchie!

Paul Chamberlain  at Merikin park 2015 - freestyle now bmx flatland - photo Omar Lammers

 Paul Chamberlain captured at Meriken Park mid combo by Omar Lammers

Lee Kirkman
Wow what can i say about Japan it was a experience never to be forgotten what an eye opener the people there the hospitality is next to none i have never met so many nice people willing to go out of their way to make you feel welcome by far my favorite trip i have ever been on.

Lee Kirkman at Flatark 2015 mid contest run - freestyle now bmx flatland

Lee Kirkman mid run with a no hander stick B- photo by Marcio Abe

Shaun Jarvis at Flatark 2015 X up endo at Meriken Park - freestyle now bmx flatland

Shaun Jarvis getting rubbery armed at Meriken Park with a X up endo – photo by Omar Lammers.

Lee Kirkman at Flatark 2015 rolling at Merikin Park - freestyle now bmx flatland

Lee Kirkman rolling at Meriken Park in Kobe.

Paul Chamberlain Shaun Jarvis Lee Kirkman at Nara in Japan 2015 - freestyle now bmx flatland

Lee, Paul and Shaun at Nara deer park in from of a 1000′s year old temple on the last day in Japan.

More photos form the adventure can be found in Shaun’s facebook photo album here

 

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Freestyle Now bmx stunt shows – Carnarvon Tropicool Festival – raw video

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Freestyle Now recently performed some bmx stunt shows at the Carnarvon Tropicool Festival. It was a two day drive there with the portable jump box in tow. Founding Freestyle Now squad member  Shaun Jarvis was joined by reserves squad member Brady Thomas and good friends Warren Bowers and Nathan Philps. This is a raw video from show 4 on the day. You can also see the Carnarvon Tropicool festival video which will give you a look at the whole 3 days festival as well as some radical drone footage from our first warm up show from 10am. Make sure you check out our coming events page to see where the next Freestyle Now bmx stunt shows will be going down. If you would like this type of great entertainment at your next event please get in contact with Freestyle Now with your requirements.

Freestyle Now show 4 at the Carnarvon Tropicool festival – raw video

The carnarvon Tropicool festival is a good time

Below is drone video from Freestyle Now first show on the day

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Freestyle Now – Duncraig High school stunt show

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Recently Freestyle Now was invited to the Duncraig High School to do a lunch time stunt show as part of their alive festival. Founding Freestyle Now squad member Shaun Jarvis was joined by reserves squad member Matt Adkins and good friends Brendon Cross on skateboard and Caleb Pratt on scooter. Freestyle Now set up the jump box and then just proceeded to roll out the rad for the lunch time festivities. At this school presentation there was no main objective or discussion on issues that surround young people as would normally be the case with a school presentation. On this occasion Freestyle Now was there just to showcase some skateboard, scooter and bmx riding.
A Freestyle Now school presentation is a mix of awesome BMX, scooter and skateboard skills with positive messages and motivational speeches throughout the presentation to keep the students captivated and by doing this it opens up their minds to the presentation which helps for them to absorb the messages we promote. If you would like this type school presentation at your school please get in contact with Freestyle Now with your requirements.

Freestyle Now stunt show duncraig high school June 2016 - Matt Atkins cannonball

Matt Adkins hitting the Cannonball over the portable Freestyle Now box jump.

Freestyle Now stunt show duncraig high school June 2016 - BMX skateboard scooter

Clockwise from top left – Matt Adkins loops a full 360 – Brendon Cross likes benny hanna (that’s the tricks name) – Matt Adkins bar spins over Shaun Jarvis – Caleb Pratt throws down some scooter action

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