Last year, it was an inaugural event for us and coming into year two, we came on board with FMB and this has drawn in some extra riders. Obviously there's a lot of hype because it's all happening in London, the location where many people want to come. This year, Air to the Throne was already a silver event and for the next year we're looking at gold status, which is going to make things even bigger, attract more riders and progress it. It's about time the UK got a really serious mountain bike event being as we've had such an influence over the world of freestyle mountain biking. Since the very beginning it was Grant "Chopper" Fielder and Chris Smith and we've had Sam Pilgrim as a former FMB World Champion. So, it's about time to step up to the gold. We're all delighted to see how much everything, especially riding has progressed comparing to last year. All in all, it was an epic celebration of freestyle mountain biking. - James Throne
Alex Cahill was on top of his game. With his tricks and style, he was as vivid during the comp as his frame.
Reed Boggs came in hot and with high expectations.
It was great to see this young American in London.
Reed was awarded "Rider of the Session" during the cash-for-tricks demo on Saturday afternoon and took home one of the trophies from Unit 5 Metalworks.
DJ Kirsty Harper was setting up the mood for everybody and she was doing it perfectly. How does she know all my favourite tunes? I don't know... but this is how you know it's a really good DJ.
It was great to see other riders rooting for their friends battling in qualification heats.
Diego Caverzasi and one of many variations of his beloved trick - bar spin.
Scott Hamlin aka Stuntman Mechanix. Scott was boasting that he can fix any puncture.
Well, how about this one, Scott?
Ray Samson couldn't miss the competition for anything. Here, he goes with his signature Superman-Seatgrab.
Matt Jones was practicing hard, he knew it wouldn't be easy to stand on a podium with such a stacked field of riders.
This is why I love freestyle mountain biking.
Variety of tricks and butter smooth execution of them makes me very happy!
And another one. This is no one else, but Freddy Pulman. Love this kid's style.
Michael Meisel, a young german rider. The German scene is full of talented riders and Michael is definitely one of them.
Daryl Brown has this trick, 360-No-Hands, on lock. Unfortunately, he was holding on to the handlebars too much during the semi-finals, which ruined his chances to get into the finals.
Busy few days at The London Bike Show this week! 20 shows and Air to the Throne has taken its toll! Great vibe from the UK event! - Daryl Brown, Bulls Bikes
I could watch Nicholas Terrier for days and never get bored. There is something in the French water that makes all those guys look so good in the air.
Sam Pilgrim's protege, Tom Cardy. He's doing so well and picked up a new sponsor, Green Bikes, which only made him more motivated to shred hard.
This is the second time the London audience have had the pleasure of enjoying Alex Alanko's riding. That Scandinavian ice-cold style is timeless. Oh, and yes, this is Diego pushing Scott who's sitting on a chair and filming Alex's run.
Deep bag of tricks, especially double-backflip, took Frank Paulin really high in ranks of this comp. However, a slip up in the semi-finals took him out from the fight for the gold.
Chris Raeber was on a good run until... the snapped chain brutally slammed him into the floor...
Luckily, he walked away with a dent in his honour only.
Scott's tuning Rogatkin's bike to be perfectly ready for all those big hitters coming up in the final round.
Normally, a photo like this would sadly go to the bin. However, I wanted to show you how much amplitude Adrian Tell gets while doing this trick. Nuts! Such a shame he made a mistake doing a cash roll and that's what buried his run for the podium for good.
Ended up in the 7th place! The riding level was absolutely insane. Really stoked to be up there in the top spots. I messed up in my second run, but happy I slid out on the cash roll, what I had in my mind for the box jumps could potentially have gone a lot worse! - Adrian Tell, Merida Bikes
Elof Lindh who just recovered from a horrible injury of a shattered heel, regrettably had another misfortune. Losing control on the second barspin in 360 rotation caused him to land awkwardly on his arm. He's tough as nails so expect him to be back soon!
Viktor Dohan quietly, but very effectively was going through all the qualification rounds until he landed in the finals. Well done, Viktor!
Torquato Testa always a top contender for the number one spot wherever he goes to. This time it was the 5th place for the Italian rider.
Toto's fellow countryman, Diego Caverzasi had all the right to leave the comp in smiles. The weekend full of quality and injury free riding always is a good treat. 4th place for this guy.
Simon Pages caught wind in his sails last summer. Winning at Lublin Sportival was definitely a great boost of confidence and his feeding off that all the time is now keeping the podium stream going on.
0.7 of a point. This is how much divided 2nd place from the 1st. Matt rolled out his heaviest artillery and made Nicholi seriously think how to defend his title from last year.
Back for the second year, Air to The Throne was a blast. The immediate surprise this year was the increase in the trick level from all the riders, made noticeable by the same course as last year. The tricks even in the first qualifying heat would have won the contest last year. I'm super grateful to everyone involved with organising a sizeable UK event and hope to see more soon! YO! - Matt Jones, Marin Bikes
"the best method of defence is to attack". Is this what was in Nicholi's mind at this moment? Judging by his last run, I couldn't be more sure about it!
Nicholi put all the cards on the table and he struck a perfect run. The consistency of this guy is hammering.
Congratulations! Here's our happy winner...
The level of riding here at AT3 was unheard of, I mean we didn't expect the guys to go that mental. Matt Jones had one of the best runs I have ever seen. He pushed me to send the best stuff I have. Last run of the day, last run of the whole event and I was able to pull it off. It's always a huge adrenaline rush and I am super stoked with that! Once again, an event that a lot of people are skeptical of, because of the wooden ramps and being located indoors, but it was a crazy comp and vibe again, so I am definitely happy with this one. What brings me here really, is that after I got my first invite after a long winter of not riding contests, it's impossible to pass up on another event with the boys. We live for it, for that adrenaline rush when we drop in. - Nicholi Rogatkin, Specialized Bikes
And his bike, Specialized P3.
Thank you, London. We already look forward to the next year.
However before we paddle away into the sunset, we have a good surprise to you all. Nicholi and the organisers were very kind to make a small giveaway. So, we have two official Air to The Throne t-shirts with Nicholi's signatures. All you need to do is guess the weight of Nicholi's bike [XXkg XXgrams // XXlb XXoz] and it will be yours. The first two people with the most accurate answers will take the prizes!