LIVE at the X
San Francisco, CA June 25-July 3, 1999
The opening weekend of summer X has ended, but the hype has not. The debut of Bouldering was better than any could have expected. The trials are over and the finals begin Monday afternoon, but don't finish till dinner time. So, before you leave work, (we know you're surfing the web all day anyway) check to see if the Americans strength lies in it's youth or someone with a really hard to pronounce name will step up on the fake rock for the Ukraine. "If it's in the mountains it's in MountainZone.com" still holds true, but don't think we're not checking out the skateboarding and freestyle motorcross because that stuffs da bomb y'all!
Instead we found it to be a decent excuse to shove a few crab croquettes into our mouths, tip a beverage or two on the X and to say hello to Tara.
I half expected it to be like Hunter Thompson on the 1972 presidential campaign trail, waiting for someone to stand up and toss a football across the room or light off a string of firecrackers, after all there is a six story red letter X standing rather menacingly across the street on Pier 30, and it does stand for something extreme doesn't it?
The excitement gets into full swing later today with the Speed Climbing finals taking place and the first of the Big Air practices. In the shadow of San Francisco's beautiful Bay Bridge, at least the venue of the summer '99 X-Games promises to be breathtaking.
Dave Ballantine, wondering where the free drinks are for MountainZone.com
The difficulty climbing event has been replaced by bouldering this year, but the need for speed climbing has remained and it will take place on the same course. The Big air snowboarding venue looks like the same massive structure, and is sure to have the same quality of San Francisco snow... in June. The athletes will keep to their little cliques and we'll force them all to recognize that regardless of what they do, Tony Hawk is the godfather of X and has the last say.
So check back here on Friday for the speed climbing and see if Hans Florine can get his title back. The kids of winter will be pulling their moldy cloths out of the closet to hit the big kicker under the Cali sun on Saturday. And Monday brings us Bouldering's debut under the X. This will focus more on strength and less on endurance so we might just see a few fresh faces on the podium.
Hans Prosl, taking over the press conference for MountainZone.com
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