Above is a bonus gallery from the event. Below are the bangers.
Words: Laura Austin
Captions: Pat Bridges
Have you ever been to a demolition derby? You know… where tons of high quality people surround a dirt pit to watch cars smash each other into oblivion. Well Hot Dawgz & Hand Rails is kind of like that, but in this case the competitors weren't the only ones getting smashed.
This was the 7th annual Hot Dawgz & Hand Rails competition held at Bear Mountain Resort. The event has quite the reputation, boasting to be one of the largest spectator events on the West Coast. Which makes sense seeing that it is so close to LA and early enough in the year that people can hang out in nothing but shorts and a t-shirt and watch some of the top pros ride. And with so many people up there, the competition itself isn't the only entertainment...the people-watching is some of the best I've witnessed. Catfights, kids dunking their heads in a toilet full of lemonade to retrieve snickers, and 12 backflips done in 30 seconds were just some of the highlights. The things some people are willing to do for some free stuff will never fail to amaze me.
But obviously the thousands of spectators aren't the only ones providing the entertainment, it's the snowboarding that everyone comes up to see. Hot Dawgz & Hand Rails is known for it's unique setups and this year it lived up to it's expectations. With 34 riders and two separate zones there wasn't a shortage of visual stimulation. On one side there was a Red Bull feature which was literately a rail garden consisting of two handrails with stairs and boxes surrounding a planter, which included all sorts of trees and shrubs. The other setup was Bear's new signature feature, which included a close out rail with a bomb drop into a wall ride.
Being one of the first contests of the season you would think riders might play it safe seeing as they may have not been on a board for a while and an injury at this event could destroy their whole season, but that definitely wasn't the case. Every rail trick you can imagine was thrown down at this contest. And with a 3 hour session it forced people to get creative throwing spins, flips, and one footers into the mix. In the end Nick Visconti took the top spot, which he definitely deserved after his fastplants off the wall ride and front flips off the planter. Jake Kuzyk ended up taking second and Johnny Lazz snagged third. Those two were probably the most consistent though out the day. Standouts Mike Casanova and Jess Kimura didn't walk away empty handed, winning the Red Bull Best Trick. Kimura decided she is going to put winnings towards Paige Rainer's hospital bill after splitting open her head during the competition.
The night at the mountain closed with premieres of Bear's video Paint It Red and People's Cheers. Then the party migrated to Mandarin Garden for even more drunken debachury. Except for Paige Rainer, Dylan Alito, the person who was arrested behind the award ceremony, anyone who went just to see Bradshaw ride, and a chick that had her top ripped of in a catfight, Hot Dawgz & Hand Rails turned out to be a great success.