The main difference between Toe Jam at the Projects in April, and Toe Jam at the Projects in September, is black and constantly humping. Woah there, sicko, I’m talking about love bugs. The small inspects are taking as much advantage of their short life spans as possible, and are constantly copulating with their mate. They are also flying around everywhere at the Projects, and swatting them is not only annoying but distracting.
But enough about that. Between swatting love bugs, I did watch the Rockstar Rail Jam. In the semi finals Ben Horan was paired with Brian Grubb and Nick Taylor with Brandon Thomas. It was a similar match up to the first stop of the Toe Jam, rookies vs. vets. And as in April, the young guns took out the old favorites with consistency, style, pop and tech.
When Ben and Nick met in the finals, even the love bugs seemed excited. “It was really intense being matched up with Nick in the final,” Ben said, “but I was honestly more scared when I was going up against Clint.” (Clint had been riding super well all weekend.)
Nick rode first and threw down solid slides on all the boxes front and backside big spins, and his banger, a front lip big spin out. Not a run to be ignored. Then Ben took the water. He also hit all the boxes managing things like a frontlip shuv, back lip shuv and in the flats a frontside flip and kickflip. Then he pulled off the ultimate banger, a boardslide kickflip off the flat bar, and not a donkey kick kickflip, a proper popped kickflip. Like woah, Ben totally won.
“I never thought I would win Toe Jam,” Ben said, “and then I woke up this morning and I’m in the finals. It was weird but I loved it.”
Rail Jam ROUND 1 Heat 1: Aaron Reed (2) Vs. Brain Grubb (1) Heat 2: Clint Tompkins (1) Vs. George Daniels (2) Heat 3: Stuart Shinn (2) Vs. Ben Horan (1) Heat 4: James Balzer (2) Vs. Brandon Thomas(1) Heat 5: Steven Campbell (1) Vs. John Ruark (1) Heat 6: Brett Little (1) Vs. Matt Manzari (2) Heat 7: Ben Kaiser (2) Vs. Nick Taylor (1) Heat 8: Reed Hansen(1) Vs. Drew Danielo (2) ROUND 2 Heat 1: Nick Taylor(1) Vs. Brett Little (2) Heat 2: Ben Horan (1) Vs. Clint Tompkins (2) Heat 3: Brian Grubb(1) Vs. Reed Hansen(2) Heat 4: Steven Campbell (2) Vs. Brandon Thomas (1) ROUND 3 Heat 1: Brian Grubb (2) Vs. Ben Horan (1) Heat 2: Brandon Thomas (2) Vs. Nick Taylor (1) Finals Heat 1: Ben Horan (1) Vs. Nick Taylor (2)