not all was to be the same; with a few changes to the short tradition
that is Groundforce, things were a little different this time around.
two class – Novice and Expert – format was retained, with
shorter time periods leading a change. The Novice class dictated one
60-second run for each rider in the qualifications, while the Expert
class had it for 90-seconds each with two rounds.
finals saw a double round 60-second run for each Novice class rider,
with the Expert class taking two 90-second rounds each.
these minor amendments there was a more critical one-week gap between
the qualifications and the finals. This week was filled out by demos
and clinics led by our local Aresbykes riders as well as the foreign
boys, a premiere for us as organisers, and a premiere for the scene,
which has yet to witness such an intensive promotion of the sport.
in yet another barrage of changes, Groundforce was part of a larger
event called “East Park Challenge” instead of the stand
alone, independent event it debuted as. Besides flatland, there were
other disciplines, namely, aggressive in-line, skateboarding and BMX
Park. It was, to use a clichéd term, an extreme sports festival
to say, with so many changes in the barrel, Groundforce 0.2 felt pretty
different for all of us.
end of the qualifications spelt a one-week break between the qualifications
and the finals which among other things prepared the riders for the
final assault of their best flatland moves.
and early on the last Sunday morning of the East Park Challenge week,
5 riders from each class gathered to showcase their hard earned technical
were sure to impress our Japanese judges, by throwing down some original
moves with signature style, even with the Novice class riders. Sign
enough that the scene is on its way.
a replication of last session’s results, Ashler Lwi defended his
title, taking the lead in the Expert Class, with AresBykes Singapore
rider, Andre Reyes coming in a close second. Calvin Tan stepped it up
a notch from 0.1, taking third place this time around. The AresBykes
Singapore rider also clinched the Most Promising Rider Award –
the first of its kind in Groundforce.
Novice class wasn’t left out of the race for top brass. Sean Markus
Scheerder made a big jump from fourth position to clinch the top spot
this year with an impressive final run. Joshua Huang Zhi Wei made second
place his once again, with a flawless albeit unexciting two runs. Zen
Tan made a surprise entry this year, and laid rightful claim to the
final results represented an insight into the future of Singaporean
flatland, and this future holds much excitement for all of us. The Novice
class saw a major shift in talent, a sure sign of the times. With the
expert class it was more a case of testifying that there is no limit
to perfection, and that the best can get even better.
it was a tough time trying to tie the lose ends, getting our act together,
organising the second part of the Groundforce series. But what really
matters is that we had fun doing it.
if that wasn’t enough we sure learnt a great deal along the way.
Something we would definitely take with us, when the third instalment
of Groundforce is due. When that time comes, we’re confident of
making it a success.
the experiences gained and the lessons learnt over the past two competitions,
we’re sure we’ll be able to pull it off well and good. And
as it is with every chapter of Groundforce, things will change, but
only one constant will remain. Progression. Isn’t that what it’s
all about? Until then…