Since Nike launched their BMX program back in 2007 and formed a stellar team, they’ve been coming up with creative and exciting ways to support their riders. Once a year, they host a one-of-a-kind, invite-only themed contest with specially-built ramps.
It started with the Banksgiving Jams, which were non-traditional contests held in the backyards of Nike team riders Garrett Reynolds and Dennis Enarson. Then in 2009, they turned more heads by building a custom skatepark inside an abandoned train tunnel below the streets of East London and called it the Tunnel Jam. Just as everyone thought they’d witnessed one of the coolest contests ever, Nike topped it again this year by unveiling “The Pool” project.
The Pool Project
Nike took over a public pool in East London earlier this month, drained it, and with the help of ramp builder and designer Dave Sowerby, they built a custom park with street-style obstacles inside of it.
Nike then hand-selected ten of the world’s best BMX riders as team captains and asked them to pick their own four-man teams to compete with them for a contest on May 14. Among the ten team captains selected was Drew Bezanson.
Drew and Red Bull teammates Sebastian Keep and Bruno Hoffmann at The Pool:
Drew ended up asking heavy hitters Rob Wise, Pat Casey and Michael Beran (his Red Bull teammate from the Czech Republic) to join him. With consistent runs and some big moves -- like Drew’s handplant over the diving board -- the team ended up finishing with a remarkable second place.
''I'm really happy with getting second at this contest," said Drew. "It was a team event so there was no pressure and everyone just had a blast. The contest wasn't about winning, it was about going out there and having fun with your friends and doing stuff that you wanted to do."
“Doing that one trick or line that you have been waiting to do for months -- stuff that you just needed a little extra confidence [for], and that was the time and the place. My hat goes off to Nike for capturing what a BMX contest is all about: progression and fun.”
Even though the contest is now over, the Pool is not closed yet. Before the building is to be demolished, Nike is opening the Pool free of charge to the public and hosting a four-week program of core events, community interaction and beginner workshops. They’ll be providing bikes, supervision, pads and helmets to anyone who’s interested. The Pool is also open for those who would just like to check out all the action.
- Drew and the Red Bull BMX team ride a floating park
- Bezanson and Napolitan help entertain the troops
- Corey Martinez rides The Bakery