<5 Goes Off
This weekend the 5th annual Alliance <5 contest went off at The Boarding School. Thanks to sponsorship from MasterCraft, the 2016 version of <5 was the best yet. A new format brought big changes for both the riders, and you, the fans.
We did away with heats based on 180’s and 360’s and instead gave each invited rider 20 minutes to put down their best six-trick line of less-than-5 tricks (straight airs, 180’s, and 360’s only). The only catch was that one of the six tricks had to be a method. After all 12 guys had ridden, we headed into The Boarding School camp house to watch each rider’s line on the big screen TV. From there the riders – who made a rule that they couldn’t vote for themselves – voted on secret ballots for the six riders they thought had the best line. Voting was based on style, fluidity, creativity, and all-around awesomeness.
The invited riders this year were: Derek Cook, Steel Lafferty, Trever Maur, Guenther Oka, Massi Piffaretti, Brenton Priestley, Aaron Rathy, Bob Soven, Shota Tezuka, Josh Twelker, Lewy Watt, and JD Webb. Unfortunately original champ Randall Harris and last year’s champ Raph Derome had to bow out due to injury. The group of riders represented some of the most unique on the planet, and we gave groms like Guenther and Lewy a chance to test their mettle against the big boys. Of course, the conditions were perfect, even after the craziness of Hurricane/Tropical Storm Hermine hitting a couple days earlier. The sun was out and Lake 2 at the Boarding School – as always – was butter all day. Travis Moye had his new X-Star loaded and every rider threw down insanely stylish runs. When it was all said and done and it came time for the riders to vote, they all said it was one of the hardest votes they’ve ever had to make.
Right now, we at Alliance are the only ones who know the results. The rest of you will have to wait until Premieres & Beers on Friday at the Alliance Wake Lounge at Surf Expo. There we will show all the lines, reveal the winners, and hand out checks – while partaking in some frothy, convention-center Not Beers. In the meantime, there is also a Fan Favorite vote. Click over to the lines videos from the contest and watch them all, then vote for your favorite one. The Fan Favorite rider will also be recognized and given a cash prize at the party too.
Thanks again to MasterCraft and The Boarding School for making the best <5 ever possible. Vote now and vote often, then tell your friends to do the same. Make sure the line you think is the best gets the recognition it deserves. And if you’re lucky enough to get into this year’s Surf Expo, definitely be at the Alliance Wake Lounge on Friday at 4:30 to find out who won it all.