NEO was everything I expected it to be. It was massive and overwhelming, and the level of talent was absolutely ridiculous. The Neotricks boys delivered, and they delivered in a big way. Last year’s event was spectacular, yet my high expectations were exceeded this year. The Ohio boys raised the bar of professionalism in more ways than I can name, and I hope that it’s a sign of things to come for future events.
I arrived in the afternoon on Thursday, and after milling around in the rain for awhile, watching concrete tricks, and chatting with friends, we built the outdoor springfloor. There were a couple dozen of us building the floor, so the labor wasn’t too bad, and it went relatively quickly. I enjoyed getting a chance to work on the floor, since it’s such a big part of what we do; it’s like a racecar driver should know how an engine works, and is put together. Throughout the weekend, the outdoor floor was the spot to be. Not only did it help to spread people around, so the gym didn’t feel so packed, but the views were great at sunset, and being outside, with a DJ bumpin tunes, just helped set a unique and pleasant vibe. This really set the bar higher for major events; other events don’t need to do the same thing, but these extra touches like an outdoor floor, and midnight ice cream bars really make for a great experience. The only thing I can complain about from this gathering is that every time I was ready to grab some water, and watch a tricker I really wanted to see, I’d get pulled aside for something, and miss it all!
For awhile now, the mentality in combos has been “do it to dub”. Triples aren’t really a new thing, and they’ve become more common in combos in recent years, but this year, at this event, the bar was really raised. So many people were doing massive combos to triple, that I was almost instantly jaded when uploading to instagram; what would normally be a spectacular combo to dub, just weren’t at the level of people like Mike and Slava who were effortlessly hitting triples. That, my friends, is amazing, and terrifying. The bar has been raised. More than just the moves being performed, the average level of trickers was noticeably higher than it has been. There was easily a dozen young guys, probably 12-14 years old who were absolutely destroying the game. The sport is growing, and as it does, we can expect to see this more and more, and as these tiny monsters grow, we can expect to see some truly absurd things from them in 5-10 years.
My final thought: There were far too many very talented people who’s names I did not know, who’s footage I have not seen.. That means yall are not doing your jobs; upload more footage!
Thank you to Neotricks for everything you did. Matt, Ryan, Sam, and Johnny, among others, made getting around a breeze, and their nonstop efforts kept the gym clean, the seminars moving, the meals hot and ready on schedule, and the music bumping so that we could move through the weekend seamlessly. That kind of dedication is what we need in tricking, and will take them all far in life.