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Created by T. Gentsch | News

Ecko Unltd. COS Cup Köln | Gamescom Cup

The last qualification tour stop of the German skateboarding championships!

Photos & Text: T. Gentsch
Translation: M. Kuncaitis

It was Thursday evening, 23.08.2018 when Filip Labovic, David Luther, COS Chef Robin, Josh Junkes and myself met at Skaters Palace to see our accommodation for the next 2 days, a tour bus complete with sleeping quarters! We only had a short trip from Münster to Cologne planned, but we rode in comfort and style, spending most of our time chilling in the “living room” area. We arrived in Cologne just before nightfall and our bus parked outside the East entrance of the event venue. This location just so happened to offer the perfect view of various SWAT and Bundeswehr vehicles, as well as an endless stream of mythical creatures and elves wielding weapons of all kinds. Welcome to the world’s largest computer game fair!

Contrary to the other COS contests, the Gamescom Cup usually takes place on Friday and Saturday, which was the case again this year. Nevertheless, a huge number of starters were present to give it all they had on the course. Unlike in the last few years, the 2018 Contest took place indoors, which proved to be extremely favorable as harsh autumn weather knocked suspiciously hard on the door during the contest. Fortunately, we did still get a chance to skate the legendary outdoor KAP plaza in Cologne upon our arrival. However, after our trip to the plaza, we were confronted by a group of other COS skaters and team members who had arrived to stay the night in our tour bus. “Where to go with all the bags” quickly became the big question of the evening, which actually ended up with me sleeping alongside 3 backpacks in my bed. Regardless, I managed to get in a surprisingly good rest before our activities the next day!

Looking out the door of the tour bus on Friday morning felt like you were on a battlefield. Crazy looking military warriors had surrounded the vehicle with huge weapons ready for battle. Fortunately, these were not real, but I couldn’t help but ask myself whether anyone was checking to make sure these huge “guns” were safe! Not to sound F’d up, but one of these halo warriors with an assault rifle looks like they could give the SWAT crew a run for their money. Considering that kids are no longer allowed to wear fake blood on Halloween to Europapark, hopefully somebody checks the safety of something like that at this event. Luckily, Gamescon is practically a huge advertisement for the Bundeswehr, so there is plenty of support on location.

The skaters on the course didn’t seem distracted by the mythical creatures around them, especially Denny Pham and Gino Körner. Both skaters have fought for a top spot in the last 2 cups and both came back with a bang. Denny seemed to skate even better than his already insane talent level, landing him in 1st place for the qualifying round. Even if Gino "only" qualified 5th, it was obvious that he’s been working on some new tricks in the last few months. Also worth mentioning is Flo Westers, who put together some super solid lines that landed him in the second place spot. After the eliminations, which took a bit more time than expected due to a missing microphone cable (sometimes the smallest details can make all the difference), the Ravenol oil barrels rolled onto the park and the experienced starters already knew what that meant - barrell jump! This "old-school" discipline was won by Gino Körner who flew over seven barrels, landing on a board on the other side of the barrel line up. Skater Lars Billekens unfortunately proved that the barrel jump is certainly not harmless when he took a super gnarly slam on his knee, get well soon Lars!

Sunday started with a bang, thanks to lead COS chef Robin who cooked up an amazing lunch! Unfortunately, he faced some difficulty in the “kitchen” when we found out that we couldn’t cook in the hallway of the event venue for fire protection reasons. So, Robin managed to set up his spaghetti Bolognese station outside by the tour bus and then bring it back to the building for the skaters. All the skaters were certainly thankful for the great meal and even the adults had beer on tap, thanks to bartender Ralf “Ralle” Middendorf! It was around this time that we started to hear the stories of the skaters who had stayed overnight in Düsseldorf, many of which made it sound amazing that they could even skate at all! The final rounds were now on. While Denny Pham skated well on Friday, he bailed a few times during his run which left the top spot open to new contenders. It was this moment when Gaggenau-local and contest ripper Alex Mizurov put together an amazing run. It just goes to show that who does well in the qualifying rounds, doesn’t necessarily take the final win! Alex took first place overall and will be headed to Rust for the championship from 02.11-04.11. at Europapark!