The Converse Coastal Carnage bowl skating event returned to the Huntington Beach pier as a finale to the weeklong U.S. Open surfing event. The invited athletes were whittled down from 50 pro/am riders to yesterday's top-12 finalists.

With a legend in each of the final heats, it was a mix of old school and new blood in the three 10-minute heats. But it was the event's top qualifier, Ben Hatchell, who threw down tech tricks and rode fast and big straight through the finals to take the win. Tom Remillard was second and Kevin Kowalski was third.

Ben Hatchell

"It was sick getting to skate with all those older dudes, but I guess I skate a lot of street now so that probably helped me out in the small tranny and stuff," Hatchell said. He injured himself at the end of the finals, and wasn't able to compete in the Best Trick that followed. The 20-year-old from Manassas, Virginia hobbled out of the bowl with his oversized check and said he's headed home to see a doctor.

"After I got hurt I front blunted the cradle and I'm pretty psyched on that," he said. "I blunt kickflipped the deep end, and I nose grinded it too, psyched on that."

The bowl was built right on the beach, and the stands were filled with girls in bikinis and fans stoked to see some good skating going down.

The first heat included Andrew Langi, Omar Hassan, Rune Glifberg, Kowalski and legend Steve Caballero. Highlights included Omar's heelflip frontside air in the cradle, and he was even saying how lucky he was to roll away from that.


Aaron “Jaws” Homoki                                                                                                 Kevin Kowalski 

"This is probably one of the more fun contests of the year just because you have a good mix of guys," Glifberg said. "It's just rad. Converse putting this event together just shows everyone that they're down for skateboarding, and not just pro skating, any level of skating."

Heat two was full of California-based riders, with Tyler Mumma, Ryan Reyes, Brandon Perelson, Remillard and legend Lance Mountain.

Tyler Mumma                                                                                                            Ryan Reyes

At 46-years old, Mountain did a signature frontside air revert in the cradle and attempted McTwists alongside teenager Brandon Perelson, who did lines like nobody else, including a frontside invert in the cradle. Mumma did a backside crailslide and a lien air revert and Reyes did a frontside feeble in the cradle and also a 360 over the spine. Remillard did a frontside 5-0 revert in the cradle.

Tom Remillard

The third and final heat of the event was without a doubt the most heated of the day, and it included Hatchell, Ben Raybourn, David Loy, Aaron "Jaws" Homoki and legend Christian Hosoi.

"Skating with all those guys was gnarly because we were all in the bowl at the same time," Loy said. "There was so much going on. Even the announcers couldn't keep up with it, but it was fun."

At 42-years old, Hosoi was able to drop in during the mayhem and find some solid lines. He is coming off a gold medal performance at X Games Legends competition earlier in the week.

"It was good to be in there with those guys, we have our own legends category, but to be in there sitting right there on the deck while these guys are going for the cutting edge tricks, it is great," Hosoi said.

David Loy                                                                                  Ben Raybourn

Some of those tricks included Hatchell's frontside 540 in the deep end, Jaws' frontside noseblunt and Loy's massive frontside ollies in the bowl.

A best trick competition followed the finals and Jaws won with his kickflip backside stalefish.

Aaron “Jaws” Homoki

"I think we're seeing a rounded skater, one that does all disciplines, where it's tranny, street, tech and bowl skating mixed with a little bit of old school tricks," Hosoi said. "They're really starting to incorporate all aspects of the sport, even generations and eras of tricks, which brings an element of style and just fluidity."

Finals Results

  1. Ben Hatchell, $15,000
  2. Tom Remillard, $12,000
  3. Kevin Kowalski, $8,000
  4. Ben Raybourn, $7,000
  5. Tyler Mumma, $5,000
  6. Aaron “Jaws” Homoki, $4,000
  7. David Loy, $2,500
  8. Ryan Reyes, $2,000
  9. Omar Hassan, $1,500
  10. Rune Glifberg, $1,200
  11. Brandon Perelson, $1,100
  12. Andrew Langi, $1,000

Best Trick Results

  1. Aaron “Jaws” Homoki, kickflip backside stalefish in cradle, $2,000
  2. Kevin Kowalski, Saran Wrap tail block in the cradle, $1,500
  3. Tom Remillard, Smith grind to fakie in the cradle, $1,200
  4. Neil Mims, Smith grind revert in the cradle, $1,000
  5. Curren Caples, frontside flip into the cradle, $1,000