SSM are in the midst of a team crisis, Razors are no longer stronger than ever, BHC are strengthening their squad and Adapt and Valo are swapping riders – apparently.
Wheel Scene was recently referred to on a blading message board as the “Heat Magazine of blading” – and not in a good way. How rude! Well, we hate to disappoint our disparagers, so we have compiled another collection of salacious gossip that has either been confirmed as fact or merely been overheard during a drunken night out at a blading gathering. Hell, we might have even made some of this up just to ruffle a few feathers. Either way, everyone loves some idle bitching at the hair salon, so nibble on some of our bite-size nuggets of trivial chat and feel free to offer your opinions below.
Carson Starnes Drops Razors
This isn’t so much a rumour as confirmed news. Carson Starnes has left Razors and can apparently now be seen riding Valo skates, which he bought with his own money, alongside his good friends David Sizemore and Chris Smith. Atlanta is unofficially Valo land at the moment. Apparently Razors wanted to make Carson Starnes pro and even offered him a pro skate, but he was unhappy with the proposed deal and decided to walk away from the brand completely. If more skaters did this at the height of their popularity and influence on the culture, the landscape of the blading industry as we know it would change dramatically. Wouldn’t that be an interesting experiment?
New Ground Control Flat Frame
Building on the success of their Big frame, Ground Control are apparently working on another frame that has been designed to be skated flat with larger wheels. Prototypes are already being tested by various members of the team and initial responses appear to be positive. We have been told that the frames will fit 60-62mm wheels. The Featherlite is already considered one of the most reliable, robust anti-rocker frames around and the Big frames were an international hit, so this could be the final point in Sunshine Distribution’s three-pronged attack to dominate the aggressive frame market. That’s all very well and good, but when are we going to see that bloody footage they filmed at the start of the year in Barcelona?!
More Razors Pro Skates To Come
Photos have already surfaced online of Korey Waikiki’s forthcoming debut pro skate for Razors, in all of their black and white glory, but it would seem that more are on the horizon. There are significant industry murmurs that Alex Burston is set to get a second pro skate and amateur rider Howie Bennett is being bumped up to pro and receiving his first signature model in the not too distant future. Burston’s second pro skate is long overdue and we are huge fans of Howie Bennett’s blading, so we sincerely hope that both of these rumours do come to fruition. Then again, anything is preferable to ANOTHER Brian Aragon pro skate.
SSM Riders Jumping Ship
Gabriel Hyden announced earlier this month that he is stepping down from the SSM pro team, which seemed like slightly odd timing considering he only just received his first pro skate from Brian Shima’s boot company. Well, it would seem that he is not the only skater relinquishing his responsibilities with the Oakland-based brand as Marc Moreno and Chris Dafick have allegedly walked out as well. Why is everyone jumping ship from SSM all of a sudden? We have no idea. However, these departures leave a threadbare team that consists of John Bolino, Dave Lang, Joey Chase and Brian Weis. It might be time for Brian Shima to recruit some new blood – see what we did there?
BHC New Recruits
BHC has been steadily building a pretty powerful team over recent years and their last team video End Of The Line was clear evidence of this. Their all-star cast consists of veteran idols Albert Hooi, Dre Powell, Dominic Sagona and Mathias Silhan, and Alex Burston and Nils Jansons are undoubtedly at the forefront of the sport right now. Well, it seems that they have picked up some more big name new recruits. Carson Starnes has been officially announced as their newest team rider, but Montre Livingston and Elliot Stevens have been been seen regularly sporting the brand’s clothing recently. It begs the question: when will their official announcements drop? Do we now refer to Livingston and Stevens at hooligans? Hmm…interesting.
Nick LaBarre on Adapt
Earlier this year, Andrew Broom released a new edit announcing that he had ditched boot sponsor Adapt and is now being flowed skates by Valo. This seems like quite an odd move as it is surely harder to progress through the ranks of the Valo team than it is Adapt, but it seems that the transition works both ways as Nick LaBarre has left Valo for Adapt. The longstanding amateur rider has been seen cruising around Chicago on the Dutch company’s skates and we would presume that he got hooked up by friend, fellow Chicago resident and Adapt rider Andrew Nemiroski. It would seem that Valo is not, in fact, “for life” if you are a member of their amateur or flow team. Instead, Valo seems to be the brand that you stay with for a little while before going elsewhere – but that’s not quite as catchy. LaBarre now joins the likes of Keaton Newsom and Quintin Lamb as yet another disgruntled rider who does not approve of the way Jon Julio nourishes the talent at his company.
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