I dug through my contacts and hit up Jake Kinney - Action Sports Director at Woodward West, shredder and insanely nice dude. I had met Jake a few times before and we have made some cool photos together.
I was on day 90 of a solo road trip with my dog when I realized I would be passing through Tehachapi, home to Woodward West.
I last went to Woodward West in 2014 for SuperSessions and have been hungry to go back, it's such a rad place as both a rider and a media squid, and it's especially cool in December. Jake responded was keen for me to come and mentioned that Jackson would be there too. I had met Jackson a few times and grabbed a few shots with him when he was 10. Now he's 13 and has been riding with Jake a ton, so I was pumped and continued my journey towards Tehachapi.
We caught some last light when I got in and the trails were running good. Jack and Jake had little sesh and it was immediately evident how much Jack has progressed since I saw him last.
I've never put much thought into the cleaning needs of an indoor park other than sleeping so it was pretty cool when the water started flying and the riders earned their ride time.
It wasn't till we went into the hanger for the after dark session that I would get to see what they have been working on. I knew from social media that Jack had just landed a flip whip on the resi-ramp a few weeks back so I was curious about what was next.
Some casual tucks, threes, and toboggans got him loose and pumped to start working on a new trick: The cork 720, a trick which combines a backflip and a 360 spin and only a few years ago this trick would have landed a podium in many contests. I grabbed the video setup for this as I knew it would be pretty rad to see the whole timeline.
Jake has forged a special relationship with the young Canadian ripper Jackson Goldstone. Jackson’s first experience with Woodward West was at a winter camp when he was six years old. Seven years and many trips and video edits later, Jake is coaching Jackson to land some of the hardest tricks performed on bicycles.
Jake and Jackson started in the foam pit where they refined the movements in order to move on to trying the trick on the resi-ramp. Sometimes the process can take a couple of hours\days and sometimes it can span over multiple visits. Jackson progressed quickly and Jake felt he was physically ready to remove the safety net of the foam pit and go for a resi-ramp attempt after a few days of riding. By upping the potential for injury and a painful landing, Jake’s task was now to prepare Jackson to be mentally ready and have the confidence to land it.
It is pretty rad to watch someone learn a new trick and put the work in. Even more rad was watching Jake work with Jack thru the process, lots of feedback and positive energy, making the process less of a huck and more of a choreographed dance.
After a rad session in the hangar culminating with the cork 7, we headed outside for a last trails photo sesh and got some rad light.
Overall a rad, quick and unexpected few days at Woodward West and I can't wait to see where Jackson goes with his skillset, love of riding and network of support. Jake as a riding buddy doesn't hurt either.
Follow @jacksongoldstone @xjakekinneyx and @tepperspray on Instagram.www.campwoodward.com