For those of you unfamiliar with downtown Long Beach, it is pretty much just like any other big city, except you can see Snoop Dogg rollin’ around in a low rider. You have big buildings, lots of traffic, a pretty fun bar scene, and in this case, a wakeboard rail jam in the middle of it all. Around this time every year, there is a huge powerboat race in the Long Beach Harbor. The event is kicked off by a huge street festival on Pine Street (the street with all of the cool bars). To say that this event was thrown together last minute would be an understatement. The rail jam was to happen on Thursday night, and I (along with everyone else apparently) didn’t find out about it until Wednesday. The riders consisted of the Valdez boys, Trevor Glenn, and Lachie Burgess.
We rolled up to the site on Thursday evening only to see a crowd already forming. We quickly went across the street to Hooters to get some food before it was time to go to work. After dinner, it was rail jammin’ time. Trevor got stuck in traffic, so Eddie, Jacob, and Lachie proceeded to amaze the crowd, most of who had no idea what wakeboarding was. Lachie probably received the loudest applause when he became the first one of the night to hit the kicker. The Valdez boys exhibited some of the most stylish sliding on the flat box, which has become the norm for those two.
After the first rail jam, fans were treated to a bikini contest, where the riders were the judge. Eddie told me it was one of the hardest decisions he had to make in his life. After the bikini contest and a brief intermission, it was time for the second rail jam. For this one the media was everywhere. I have never seen so many digital cameras and camcorders. There were even a couple of news stations on hand. Soon after Lachie and the Valdez boys started riding, Trevor finally made it to the event. Unfortunately for Trevor, he had no warm-up and had to hit the setup for the first time in front of almost a thousand people and the news cameras. Nevertheless, he proved he fit right in and soon started treating the crowd to some very stylish nose presses.
After the riders finished up for the night, it was time for the main event. Bonfire, an ACDC cover band, took the stage and played no less than fifteen songs for the audience. These guys were so good I felt like I was at an ACDC show. We were lucky enough to enjoy backstage passes which put us right on the side of the stage to rock out. Thanks to Red Bull for once again pushing the limits of where wakeboarding can go.