Just as the X Games, Street League and Tampa Pro have become skateboarding's definitive pro contests, so has Cowtown Skateshop's annual Phoenix AM (PHX AM) risen to be an essential amateur contest for skaters trying to make their name.
Over the years Cowtown has hosted the smoothest contests with the most amazing talent from across the U.S., Canada and Brazil. This year's 12th Annual PHX AM, sponsored by Vans, proved to be no different. Day one hosted more than 200 kids trying to turn the attention to themselves, which was cut down to 40 of tomorrow's heroes. Skaters like Real Skateboards' Robbie Brockel and Kyle Walker, Alien Workshop's John Fitzgerald and Toy Machine's Daniel Lutheran all jockeyed for a spot in the finals. The 40 were reduced down to 12, with that crop nearly impossible to judge.
The top two guys, Tyson Bowerbank, and Brazil's Adriano Lachovski, both put together amazingly technical, flawless runs, but this was a contest for the international guys to shine. Adriano put together a second flawless run, and with 20 seconds left and all his tricks checked off he didn't know what else to do. He turned to the crowd for assistance, seemingly asking the masses what he should do next -- at that point, we all knew he'd won.
Canada's Matt Berger won Best Trick with a frontside hurricane kickflip out.
It's a pretty safe bet that some of these guys will have their names on the bottom of a board in the near future, and if we didn't already know who guys like Adriano Lachovski were, we do now.