Never forget skateboarding, it will never forget you when you’re on it. You would understand what I meant if one warm summer day you would fall hard on your right shoulder after dropping the raddest wooden pool you can find in France in the middle of Bordeaux’s wine fields: the BBB. What’s the relation with my DIY project? That means, that day clicked for me! How could I be devoted to skateboarding (in my association implication, by helping city councils to build the best concrete skatepark for the kids in France) and also forget skateboarding at the point that I can’t enjoy it at this moment with a simple drop. The time for the others is not over, but I needed to take more time for myself and build my own project and stop this infernal circle for me so that I could ride a transition without having to drive one and a half hours. You know also this circle: job, family, kids, wife, job…. I have my garden, I am manual worker, I understand approximately how to build a concrete bowl. I had to take the time needed, behind my straight face it is vital for me – a sort of question of life or death.
So I asked everybody who knows: Lance Mountain, Benoit Moureau, Mike Van De Ouderaa (Concrete Flow), Stéphane Flandrin and Sam Stambul (Constructo), J-Mag, Julien Bouvier (SdV), Anwar Rejeb (Concrete Waves). The melting pot of each experiences and what I will to do result in this hard DIY project bowl. Most of the project has been done with friends or devoted passionate people, like Bruno‘s crew (Concrete Dreams), Mike’s crew and Damiaan’s Netherlands warriors of Skate On for the main piece of the bowl : the transitions. Made in one day on friday 13th december the well-named : bad concrete dosing, pumping shooter obstructed, 7m² of concrete discharged in the hole, shovel working to place all in transitions, too much Trappist Westvleteren beer, Affligem and Floc’s from Gascogne, cold becoming rain at midnight, and electrocution in the hole full of water, by myself… hard work for the crew until 2.45am. But mainly for the rest I worked on with my 70 year old dad. He was as excited as I was do build it. I can thank also my family and non skateboarding friends like José, Christophe, Silvere, Guy L. and Guy D., Ludovic and all the friends who will never skate it but loved to help me. Technical informations: Viking Blocks pool coping, 20m² of concrete, shallow is 1m70 (5 1/2 foot) and deep end 2m (6 1/2 foot) with radius 2m. Length: 8m80, width: 6m. For a cost around 4500€ (but could have been around 3500€). Location: somewhere on google earth near the Belgian frontier.
Words and photos Sylvain Stricanne