Monster Energy’s Nassim Guammaz advances in 2nd place at the SLS Nike SB Pro Open Qualifiers in Barcelona
Barcelona, Spain – (May 16, 2015) The 2015 Street League Skateboarding season kicked off today with the SLS Nike SB Pro Open in Barcelona, Spain and Monster Energy’s Nassim Guammaz advancing to the semi finals in second place.
On the freshly built California Skateparks street course by the Mediterranean seaside, 28 non-SLS pros from around the world – including skateboarders from France, Belgium, Australia, South Africa, and Japan – competed for eight spots in tomorrow’s Semi Finals, where they will face off against current Street League pros. It’s a unique opportunity: The first international SLS Pro Open offers Street League newcomers a shot at earning two spots on the 2015 SLS Nike SB World Tour – stacked with the largest prize purse in skateboarding history – and one Golden Ticket to advance straight to the 2015 Super Crown Championship in Chicago in October.
Stepping up to the challenge, Saturday’s competitors attacked the new Skate Agora BDN plaza’s concrete hubbas, ledges, and centerpiece volcano obstacle in six Qualifier heats with no holds barred. When all was said and done, Guammaz, who’s been known as a force to be reckoned with on the European competition circuit for years, advanced to Sunday’s Semi Finals in second place. Stringing together a flawless Flow Section run, Nassim covered the entire course with a high-speed gap to frontside nosegrind on the bump-to-bump rail, fakie ollie to backside lipslide down the stair rail, and a frontside 180 the hard way to fakie nosegrind. Making it count in the Best Trick Section, the Dutch powerhouse combined a frontside 180 to fakie backside 50-50 (also known as Gonz grind) on the hubba, heelflip to backside lipslide down the stair rail, and a creative boardslide up the rail to shove-it into a 30.0 point finish for second place.
Taking the top spot, all-terrain master Evan Smith from Orlando, Florida, threw down powerful tricks with unpredictable flow, including Flow Section stand-outs like a huge stalefish transfer across the quarter pipe gap, backside tailslide over the volcano ledge, crooked grind into the bank, and a high-speed kickflip to nose manual. Qualifying in 3rd place, The SkateboardMag’s 2014 Amateur Skater of the Year, Chris Joslin, lived up to fan expectations with powerful tricks such as backside 360 ollie over the bump-to-bump, hardflip over the hubba, and the day’s second Nine Club – an enormous bigger flip down the stair set. “The first international SLS Pro Open sets the tone for another international season in Street League history. Two Brazilian pros have already earned their spot on the tour at Tampa Pro, Felipe Gustavo and Kelvin Hoefler and now that Nassim (Netherlands) qualified for tomorrow’s finals, other skaters from places like Japan, Belgium, and South Africa will also have their chance,” said Cody Dresser, Senior Director of Action Sports, Monster Energy. It will be super exciting to see who makes it onto the tour tomorrow.”
The biggest strategic take-away from today’s Qualifiers so far: creativity and consistency are the keys to building scores on the diverse course with its medium-sized obstacles and lack of major drop-offs for Impact Section bangers. All eyes will be on Europe’s original skateboarding mecca tomorrow, when today’s top eight riders compete against current SLS pros, including Monster Energy’s Nyjah Huston, Chris Cole, Shane O’Neill, and rookie pro Matt Berger, whose rise from a 2014 Pro Open qualifier to a Super Crown finalist was last season’s biggest underdog story. Monster Energy’s Peter Ramondetta and Ishod Wair will also compete. Regardless of who takes the podium at tomorrow’s finals – the big winners of this year’s international SLS Nike SB Pro Open are already clear: the skaters of Barcelona!
Once the SLS spectacle leaves town, the Skate Agora BDN plaza will remain as a permanent skate park for the community right on the boardwalk of Badalona’s breath-taking beachfront. As a free-to-use facility, the SLS-certified skate plaza built in a 5,000-hour effort by California Skateparks is a sign of the SLS Foundation’s commitment to supporting the future of skateboarding on an international level. Stay tuned and follow the action on the live feed from Barcelona, broadcast on www.streetleague.com.
Evan Smith (USA) 30.8
Nassim Guammaz (NL) 30.0
Chris Joslin (USA) 29.9
Cody McEntire (USA) 29.4
Moses Adams (SA) 29.0
Youness Amrani (BL) 28.7
Louie Lopez (USA) 28.6
Ryo Sejiri (JP) 27.5