If you want street cred nowadays you need to forget skateboards and spray-paint. Instead get very fit and figure out how to do backflips off pretty much anything that the council have built, regardless of how high, low, or just plain dangerous it is.
This is Parkour, or freerunning. It is so new that it hasn't even flashed up on the X-Games radar yet, but it will especially with guys like Pip Anderson here. He can't stand still, and if he does he will jump onto his hands and carry on chatting upside down. He's like Zebedee, but for real.
Jason Finn is legendary in the world of arena trials, and can ride his Montesa up or other anything you care to think of. So in a tight course through an urban setting, we set the two head-to-head. The venue was the skatepark under the A40 near Royal Oak tube station, London. The competition would involve both jumper and rider leaping from one ramp to the next over a 10 foot gap, then tackling a concrete take-off over a railing that easily stretched 15 feet into the air before landing down a rickety wooden ramp. Not possible for normal people, but neither of these guys are. A fall would result in a very nasty collision with the ground from a height.
Watching these guys warm-up was bloody unbelievable and Jason was leaping his bike like only someone with his experience could, but Pip wasn't fazed. I'm not joking, he could jump straight over my astounded head from a standstill. After the guy from the council buggered off we got started.
Immediately Pip gapped Jason, accelerating away quicker than the trials bike on his Zebedee legs. Over the jump Jason took the tiniest of leads back. Pip didn't break his stride after clearing the huge gap but seemed to hesitate for a split second before taking off over the next jump, and Jason landed a bike length in front. This was proper neck-and-neck stuff.
There was absoloutely no grip in the second arena and the front washed out under Jason. Pip stole the chance to take the lead and didn't look back, crossing the line three bike-lengths ahead. Pip celebrated his win with a backflip and a shrug.