Metro West is one of those spots that will go down in wake legend, for well-deserved reasons. Everyone who’s anyone’s hit it. It’s a mellow drop that doesn’t even really require an ollie, and therefore the possibilities are endless. So on my recent trip to Orlando I figured it would be a good place to set up a little photo shoot and make things happen.
Well actually, it wasn’t quite that simple. First we were trying to ride a few other spots and got shut down. Once we finally settled on winching, it was an obvious choice, suggested by Jen GilanFarr, but then we had to find a winch. About 2000 phone calls later we found a winch, but no car it would fit in. Then Jen could no longer come. And then…well, you get the idea. But once we pulled into the Wendy’s parking lot and set up not one, but two winches on the opposing shore, well it was on.
The riding crew consisted 50% of the population of female wakeskaters in Orlando, Steph Wamsley and Renee Jaquess as well as dudes Matt Hooker, Andrew Pastura and their crew. Steven Campbell would show up later, and the members of the media such as Darren Manzari and Roland Lugo would take a couple hits at it too. Since Toe Jam had just concluded, it was pretty clear with this crew in tow, some ish would go down.
Of course the thing with winching is it’s a lot of work. And trying tricks multiple times takes a lot of swimming, climbing and pulling on the rope. It’s pretty common that even with skilled riders, nothing will be landed in a session. This was one of those sessions. But before you ask why I would even bother writing a story or using photos about people not landing tricks, let me explain. Actually, that’s the point of this story. Cause you see, Metro West is old news. What isn’t is the tricks that were being tried.
Steph and Renee are doing everything in their power to build a name for women’s wakeskating, and so they didn’t even bother with trying to ollie the drop. Steph came so close to a kickflip (remember what a monumental thing it was when Aron Gore kickflipped it a few years ago) and Renee was popping perfect shuvs. Neither of them landed in their few tries, but don’t worry, it will happen before the summer is up.
For the dudes, Matt Hooker was trying heelflips. It wasn’t happening, but he was so close, I give that one to him his next visit to the spot. Andrew didn’t ride but you know he would have switch hardflipped it (or something equally absurd.)
But after a few hours it seemed that the tricks were just too tech and it wasn’t the day. This session might be a total bust. Impressive, but a bust. The Scene One Film crew was packing up to leave. Enter Steve Campbell. He immediately began trying to frontside flips. Now we all know he’s got this trick, so it was no surprise when he stomped the hell out of it after only a few tries.
So lets recap: girls trying kickflips and shuvs. Dudes trying heelflips. Frontside flip: STOMPED. And it was only April. Not to be redundant, but this is gonna be an amazing year.