SOME of the world's top extreme athletes will descend onto Yuanshen Stadium to compete in the Streetboard World Cup. While it's the 19th edition of the event, it is being held in Asia for the first time. Six world champions will be facing off and ripping up the ramps at Top Toys Skatepark while competing for this year's title.
Streetboarding developed in the 1990s as a unique fusion of skateboarding and snowboarding. Riders use a skateboard but their feet are strapped in much like a snowboard. According to the World Cup's general manager Grégory Perret, this opens up "a whole new range of tricks."
"The sport has evolved into something very technical with the riders starting to combine tricks from snowboarding and skateboarding to create their own," Perret said. "Pros are now landing 1080s, double-backflips and frontflips over sets of 20 stairs. Every year sees a whole range of brand new tricks and creativity."
This year's competition will be especially interesting with some of the sport's biggest names in attendance, including seven time winner Brinton Gunderson. Lately, there's been a duel at the top between 2010 winner Sergi Nicolas, who has been described as the "the greatest rider that has ever graced the sport," and last year's defending champ Gabi Mu?oz, who is the only rider to have landed a double backflip in competition.
While the two Spaniards will be dueling on the ramp, they'll be working together to promote the sport in China during a week of festivities. Both are featured in the movie "Drop This!." It will make its world premiere on September 14 at Cube. The riders will do a Monday demo session at SMP Skatepark before embarking on their China Ultimate Tour that takes them to five cities over 12 days.