Check out a recap of of Red Bull Hart Lines, courtesy of Red Bull.
Today, the fans arrived en masse to Detroit’s famed Hart Plaza to witness 19 of the world’s best professional skateboarders test their skills in the Qualifier round of Red Bull Hart Lines. The brand new event, a part of the Red Bull Signature Series, is a first-of-its-kind street skateboarding event featuring an innovative course design and contest format. The Top 8 qualifiers from today move on to tomorrow’s Final round with gates opening at 9am to the public and Finals starting at 11am (weather depending).
Taking full advantage of the first-of-its-kind two-lane course, each athlete put their own creative spin on each of their three runs. Competition was fierce today, but it was 28-year old Canadian Ryan Decenzo that impressed the judges with clean tricks such as a feeble grind on the long rail, a switch tailslide on the hubba ledge, and a huge frontside flip over the planter gap. “All I wanted to do was make it all the way through, do what I was doing in practice, go fast and finish really strong with a big move in the end,” Decenzo explained.
Ryan Sheckler, the creator behind the Hart Lines event, took second in the Qualifying round with solid tricks like a backside 5-0 over the channel, a crooked grind on the bump to up-rail, and a kickflip over the big planter gap. Youness Amrani was close on his heels in third with tricks like a high-speed backside tailslide on the ledge, a switch 180 over the euro gap, and a switch feeble grind down the 10-stair round rail. Evan Smith earned a surprising sixth spot after missing the first two days of practice and arriving on-site this morning to take his first runs through the course. Legend Chris Cole then rounded out the field with an impressive run during the Last Chance Qualifier round to secure the eighth and final spot.
Sheckler, who has put nearly three years into the making of this landmark event in the Motor City, was more than impressed with the riding that went down during the qualifiers today. “I can’t believe how gnarly everyone got on the course today,” said Sheckler after the qualifiers concluded. “Guys were doing tricks that I hadn’t seen thrown in practice all week. When you get your adrenaline running during a contest like this, you forget about what trick you want to pull, so you just go for the harder one and land it - which makes it worth it.”
The complete list of the Top 8 qualifiers moving on to Saturday’s Red Bull Hart Lines Finals include: 1st -
Ryan Decenzo (CAN)
2nd - Ryan Sheckler (USA)
3rd - Youness Amrani (BEL)
4th - Torey Pudwill (USA)
5th - Curren Caples (USA)
6th - Evan Smith (USA)
7th - Alec Majerus (USA)
8th - Chris Cole (USA)
The final field of 8 athletes not only earns bragging rights, but the first-place competitor receives $35,000 and a brand new 2015 Dodge Challenger R/T presented by Pennzoil Synthetics. In addition to the payouts for the Top 8 competitors, Ryan Sheckler himself will hand out $2,000 for the “Sheckler’s Got Hart” award for the skater he deems showed the most heart throughout the competition. And one other lucky competitor will receive $2,000 for landing the best switch trick as part of the “Make The Switch” award powered by Pennzoil.