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As it’s June time again this means one thing to the skateboarders and BMXers of Farnborough/Aldershot area, time to get together and celebrate the Matt Tapp Jam. This is the second annual jam after the massive success of last years. The whole idea of the Matt Tapp Memorial Jam is to celebrate the life of a fellow skater who sadly left us just under 2 years ago and to raise money for the charity CALM, which is set up to create awareness of the support against young male suicide.

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Once again the whole show was put together by the Charlie Norton (aka Big Boss) who organised the idea of having food, a raffle to create some hype for the mass amount of prizes that were donated as well as the main BMX and skateboard jams. Music was playing the whole day and a massive turn out of support, even people who were just passing by came over to have a look to see what was going on.
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The first jam didn’t kick off till around 12ish by the time everyone got to the park, which meant that those who were down early could enjoy some practice time. Getting those final lines together and working out tricks for the jams. However for local rider Tristan Petch, the warm up didn’t go too well as after airing the spine ramp his bars twisted which ended in a full on face plant to the floor. The result was rather graphic and not the ideal start to the day. Within about 10 minutes the ambulance was on the seen to assist taking Tristan to the local hospital, leaving the park to a massive round of applause.

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Once the park was clear and the blood had been cleared away, it was time for the main events – Matt Tapp Jam 2015!

BMX Jam

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The level of riding in Farnborough is always really really strong, with a lot of high flying riders and tech wizards throwing down some serious combos. What is always nice is the team spirit that all the riders show, high fives on an amazing run or pushing each other to go bigger and better.

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During the jam food was being cooked which did cause a massive queue of people hungry for a burger! Although I think Charlie got a little carried away first of all when setting the BBQ fire…..I don’t think I’ve seen someone so close to a flame that big and not actually run away!

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As well as a BBQ there was also a lovely cake made for the jam, the design was from Matt Tapp’s tattoo, which was also used on the banners and stickers around the skate park.

Skateboarding Jam

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Again the same as the BMXers, any time I go down to Farnborough the skateboarding leave just keeps getting better and better. More flips in a trick, longer grinds and high airs! One skater who’s always killing it, even though he’s not got the best of knee’s any more is Phil Gee, who was kind enough to put down a footjam on the sub box for the Matt Tapp Jam.

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What’s amazing is that this skate jam brings out people who used to skateboard the park back in the day, even if they don’t live local they still manage to make a visit. Just showing that the scene down here is still strong.

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Ticket Number…….

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Due to the mass amount of prizes from different companies and shops which were provided for the jam, there was just way too much to give out. Therefore a massive raffle was held which all the money from the tickets went to CALM. There was some strong competition for the prizes with some people buying a good 6 or 7 strips to grab some goodies! Some people, even though they didn’t have their number called, wanted a prize no matter what!

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Prize Winning Time

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After the raffle it was the moment everyone had been waiting for, who were the winners of the Matt Tapp Jam 2015. There was a lot of stiff competition so luckily the judge panel didn’t take any bribes to force the results. Each winner also got a one of a kind and custom built trophy designed by Phil Gee, so even having that to show at home is enough to have pushed your riding or skateboarding to the extreme.

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Within the BMX jam the winners were –
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1st Place – Luke Glover
2nd Place – Ryan Winterbotham
3rd Place – Jake Flowers

In the skateboarding the winners were –

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1st Place – Phil Gee
2nd Place – Dan Judge
Joint 3rd Place – Josh McDonald & Silas Henderson

After the prize giving there was a final game of SKATE which was won by Steve “Stiggas” Callis, thanks to all his pressure flip madness!

Till Next Year

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Overall it was again another super amazing event, put on by skaters and BMXers for skaters and BMXers. If the Matt Tapp Jam’s keep up like this I can’t wait for next years. What was also really nice was that last year the money from the event was put towards getting some new benches put into the park in the shape of a skateboard deck. For myself it was the first time I’d seen them and compared to what used to be there, a lot more enjoyable to sit and watch the action.

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As always friends and family placed some flowers at the tree at the top of the park which is where Matt looks over the park everyday. Until next year Farnborough!!