At only 17 years old, our PHXAM contest has matured into something we could never have dreamed of when we first handed out trophies at Desert West all those years ago. This year the weekend started on Friday night with a video premiere of Vans’ newest project “Spinning Away” along with a 20-year photo show from Thrasher Magazine’s Mike Burnett. Hundreds of skateboarders piled into Legend City Studios in downtown Phoenix to have their eyeballs invaded by iconic skate photos and have their ears serenaded by the sweet sounds of DJ Juan Love AKA John Cardiel.
Once everyone got a groggy start the next morning we made our way to the park to find the legendary PHXAM line wrapping around the D West parking lot. As is tradition, the early birds who camped out received PHXAM gift bags full of rad stuff from all of our sponsors and the legendary “1st Dude In Line” walked with a little something extra.
The qualifiers seem to get more insane every year and after watching all 206 shredders throw it down all day with DJ Kate Scratch Fever supplying the perfect soundtrack, our faces had been sufficiently melted. There were lots of standouts, but in the end, it was France’s Vincent Milou who grabbed the top spot and the golden ticket straight to the finals on Sunday.
Everyone was so fired up from a day of heavy skating that they took that fire right into Volcom’s PHXAM After Party at the Pressroom. It was a real rager and whether you came for the Happy Medium 4 video premier or any of the epic tunes from Drunk Dom and The Roaches, Petyr or Ho9909 you most likely left with a belly full of drinks and a smile on your face.
After snoozing those alarms a few times everyone rolled out of bed and back over to the park to start warming it up for the semi-finals! The top 39 from Saturday crushed 13 more jams to find out who was going to meet up with Vincent Milou in the finals.
After a mind-blowing final with flawless runs from Jack Olson, Jake Illardi, Maurice Jordan and Ivan Montiero amongst others, it was time for the Red Bull best trick contest where Dylan Williams took home $2,500 for a Backside 180 Switch Frontside Crook Fakie Flip Out. Say that five times fast… The whole best trick contest was complete insanity with tons of amazing tricks being landed faster than you could witness them.
Even with all that craze going on, everyone couldn’t stop wondering who was going to take home that $7,500 check for first place. After some heavy deliberation, our expert judges decided that the podium would be Jack Olson in 3rd, Maurice Jordan in 2nd, and Ivan Montiero taking home that 1st place trophy.
Huge thanks to Josh Hawkins, Ben Dixon and their amazing crew for managing to fit an entire Chevy Malibu into the amazing course design amongst all the other rad features they put together. We also want to thank all of our sponsors including Vans, Volcom, Redbull, Real Skateboards, Bones Wheels, Bones Bearings, Independent Trucks, Thrasher Magazine, Pro-Tec, Stance, Happy Hour, Mob Grip and the always amazing City Of Phoenix Parks and Rec. Most of all we want to thank everyone who came to watch, skated in the contest, watched the webcast and supported the Arizona skateboard scene this weekend. Without all of you, we couldn’t have made #PHXAM2018 possible!