August 31st, saw the Vans Downtown Showdown take Paris by storm. Celebrating its 5th year in Europe, this unique event brought together the best of skateboarding, art and street culture. As 15,000 people descended upon La Grande Halle de la Villette, Paris saw this favourite fixture of the skateboarding calendar grow to truly epic proportions.
With a ‘for skateboarders, by skateboarders’ approach to the design and flow of the course, with the board brands themselves submitting the plans, the level certainly stepped up for this year’s Vans Downtown Showdown. The contest’s reputation for never failing to push boundaries whilst seeing everyone having fun, brought the crème de la crème of world skateboarding to Paris for this unique event.
This relaxed format and the electric atmosphere inside the Grande Halle combined with a set up skaters dream of, saw the best from all riders, regardless of their preferred discipline. This clearly suited Luan Oliveira, who, free from the restraints of a traditional competition format, annihilated pretty much everything. This earned him 2nd Place in Cliché’s pool, and a frontside kickflip from the cigarette pack to switch 360 kickflip from the top, secured him 1st on Palace’s “expensive luggage”.
The Vans riders killed it. Nassim, solid as ever, Pfanner going huge over Flip’s tricolour and Pedro Barros pushing it on the Element’s Eiffel Tower, were amongst the stand out riders. Nassim took home ‘Best Amateur’ for his consistency across all obstacles, which included nailing a long lip-slide on the Flip handrail.
Winner of the Monster ‘Quasimodo’, a prize awarded not necessarily for the best trick, but for the line, slam, trick or attitude that impressed the judges the most. Evandro Martins from Brazil’s Dropdead team took this accolade, with a frontside 5-0 on the intimidating Eiffel Tower obstacle, bringing a little Brazilian flair to this iconic Parisian monument.
As a guest of the Dropdead team, Pfanner didn’t let the side down, keeping the crowd on edge with his relentless mission to clear Flip’s giant flag, getting closer and closer with every attempt, but finally had to call it a day when time ran out. The same spot saw Nisse Ingemarsson stomp a feeble, holding it for the full length of the massive rail, as well as Dominic Dietrich’s backside melon, clearing the entire width of the flag from the extension.
Getting things off to an impressive start, Sweet put up an high performance throughout their first appearance at the Vans Downtown Showdown. The team took on the course with creativity and throwing down some solid tricks, earning Josef Scott Jatta 1st place on Cliché’s pool. The Cliché obstacle itself was the scene of the best jam, seeing some fun thrown down with flowing lines and solid moves all round. Pedro Barros’ kickflip indy over the hip and TJ Rogers’ insane kickflip nose manual to nollie kickflip out added to the variety and the jaw dropping level of riding.
Reigning champs, Flip, undoubtedly impressed everyone, but were nudged from their top spot by an impressive performance from the Sweet team, and by Element too. Check the table below for the full list of results.
Vans would like to say a massive ‘thank you’ to all who joined us for the 2013 Vans Downtown Showdown here in Paris. To all the teams; Palace, Element, Cliché and Flip, whose obstacles made the contest, as well as Antiz,
Blind, Death, Dropdead, Isle, Metropolitan, Radio and Sweet who all raised the bar, yet another year in a row. This should also be extended to all our partners in the Vans Downtown Showdown, the concessions, the A.skate Foundation and to Fiat and Monster Energy, too.
I think we can safely say that this little soiree has put the 2013 Vans Downtown Showdown up there with the Louvre, the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower as a Parisian marvel that simply couldn’t be missed.
Keep an eye on www.downtownshowdown.eu for more news from the Vans Downtown Showdown, and for the online auction of the Live Art created during the event, with all proceeds going to the A.skate Foundation.
Don’t forget, if you’re in Paris and fancy trying your skills on the obstacles seen here, you can skate them at the Cosanostra Skatepark!
1st – Luan Oliveria // 2nd – Louie Lopez // 3rd – Yuri Facchini
1st – Pedro Barros // 2nd Sylvain Tognelli // 3rd – Louie Lopez
1st – Josef Scott Jatta // 2nd – Luan Oliveira // 3rd – Louie Lopez
1st – Nassim Guammaz // 2nd – Karsten Kleppan // 3rd – Chris Pfanner
Monster Quasimodo Evandro Martins
Best Amateur Nassim Guammaz
Best Pro Luan Oliveira
BEST TEAM 1st – Element 2nd – Sweet 3rd – Flip
4th – Dropdead
Click here for more pictures from the event!
TOP 4 teams:
1 ELEMENT (Ross McGouran, Phil Zwijsen, Nassim Guammaz, Karsten Kleppan)
2 SWEET ( Gustav Tönneson, Josef Scott Jatta, Jonas Skröder, Nisse Ingemarsson)
3 FLIP ( Geoff Rowley, Ben Nordberg, Luan Oliveira, Louie Lopez)
4 DROPDEAD (Pedro Barros, Rodolfo Ramos, Evandro Martins, Guilherme Guimarães)+ guest Chris Pfanner
1 Luan Oliveira
2 Louie Lopez
3 Yuri Facchini
1 Pedro Barros
2 Sylvain Tognelli
3 Louie Lopez
1 Josef Scott Jatta
2 Luan Oliveira
3 Louie Lopez
1 Nassim Guammaz
2 Karsten Kleppan
3 Chris Pfanner
Monster Quasimodo Prize: Evandro Martins
Best AM: Nassim Guammaz
Best Pro: Luan Oliveira
Don’t miss the action!
Stuck on a boat? Missed your Eurostar? Whatever the excuse, if you’re not able to make it to the Vans Downtown Showdown in Paris this Saturday, never fear! Vans are pleased to announce that this unique event of epic proportions will be streamed LIVE across the internet! Available to view at www.downtownshowdown.eu as well as through the Vans Live app (available from Apple’s App Store), you need not miss a trick.
With coverage starting at 12:40CEST (Central European Summer Time), we’ll be delivering all the action from the best seats in the house. We kick things off with a peek behind the scenes, then all eyes turn to the skaters and the obstacles, as we begin the competition! First up are the masterful creations of Palace Skateboards; in the words of Lev Tanju, “some really expensive luggage you can grind”. We then session Flip’s fully skateable Tricolour, followed by Cliche’s take on the infamous ponds found beneath the city’s most iconic landmark, the Eiffel Tower. This brings us to Paris’ pièce de résistance itself, brought to you in shreddable format by Element Skateboards. A truly epic set up!
Throughout the broadcast we’ll be bringing you exclusive interviews with some of skateboarding’s most legendary characters, including Tony Alva, Steve Caballero, Dustin Dollin and Steve Van Doren himself. We’ll also be touring the venue, checking out the live art, speaking to the teams and giving recap of the days events. As the day draws to a close, we present the prizes and crown the champions of the 2013 Vans Downtown Showdown! Wherever you are, don’t miss it!
tune in at www.downtownshowdown.eu
In keeping with the city’s past, art plays a prominent role in this year’s Vans Downtown Showdown. Internationally respected artists such as Jay Croft, Jay Howell, Rich Jacobs, Jim “Jimp” Hollingworth, Chris Versteeg, French, Russ Pope, Kev Grey, Nicolas Thomas and Nicolas Le Borgne will be present to apply their signature style to the iconic Vans “Off The Wall” logo in a show of style and creativity, and in celebration of Vans’ 47 years of skateboarding and street culture. In the wake of the event, Vans will host an online auction of Live Art from the Vans Downtown Showdown, with all proceeds going to A.skate. The auction will include works from the likes of Rich Jacobs, Mambo, French and Jay Croft.
Black Moon will be headlining the Vans Downtown Showdown after party supported by John ‘Juan Love’ Cardiel
Limited tickets available Thursday 29 and Friday 30 in the Paris Vans stores from 11 am.
Vans are proud to bring the A.skate Foundation to Europe, where at the Vans Downtown Showdown, they’ll be holding an Autism Friendly Skate Session
12:00noon, August 31st
La Grande Halle de la Villette, Paris
As a non-profit charitable foundation, A.skate aims to channel the energies of young people living with autism through skateboarding. Through the provision of one-on-one skateboarding lessons, A.skate gives these kids the opportunity to learn at their own pace, without pressure. Introducing the concept to Paris for the first time, we are pleased to announce that A.skate will be holding an Autism Friendly Skate Session from 12:00noon on August 31st, at La Grande Halle de la Villette. Local skatepark, Cosanostra, will be kindly supplying ramps where the session will take place. This temporary park will also be open for the public to skate throughout the day.
“Autism, like skateboarding, can be unpredictable and at times, unruly.
A.skate embraces the parts of autism that are hard to understand, providing these kids with an outlet that is free of rules or judgment.”
Crys Worley, A.Skate Founder
As Peter Karvonen of the foundation explains, the benefits these sessions offer, provide the kids with more than just a new sport to enjoy;
“Skateboarding is so much more than just skateboarding when we introduce it to the kids. They are working on skills similar to those found in Occupational Therapy, yet they don’t even realise it. Skateboarding helps us work with the kids on vestibular, proprioceptive, and motor skills, as well as social skills. It’s more than just a ‘fun day at the skatepark’.”
A.skate’s presence at this year’s Vans Downtown Showdown marks a significant step in their European expansion. With a French Chapter currently being established, A.skate will be able to reach more kids, continuing to provide invaluable support, education, and helping to raise awareness. As a continuation of an already long-standing relationship, Vans are extremely proud to be working with the foundation at the Vans Downtown Showdown, and beyond. As such, in the wake of the event, Vans will host an online auction of Live Art from the Vans Downtown Showdown, with all proceeds going to A.skate. The auction will include works from the likes of Rich Jacobs, Mambo, French and Jay Croft. Keep an eye on www.downtownshowdown.eu and www.askate.org for announcements.
What’s more, Vans will be announcing a very special Vans x A.skate collaboration, due to drop early next year…watch this space!
This year, at Downtown Showdown, we are pleased to showcase skills & talent, not only through great Skateboarding, but also with amazing artists. All of them have some strong link with Skateboard- ing culture and they will work on some masterpieces during the event. Don’t miss this amazing 2013 new feature!
Get involved & express yourself in a pure Vans Off The Wall style. Our friends from ATRIA propose to bring to you an amazing Stencil Art experience. You can choose to be creative on their giant wooden wall, or simply use smaller sten- cils to personalize your griptape.