Mohamed Saouti from Ghent wins Red Bull Manny Mania 2012
Mohamed ‘Mo’ Saouti took first place yesterday in skate park ZumieZ in Wevelgem for the Belgian national qualifier of Red Bull Manny Mania. About a hundred skate fans witnesse dan exciting finale during which Belgian’s best displayed the most radical manual tricks you can imagine. European skateboarding champ and Red Bull athlete Axel Cruysberghs as well as the rest of the jury gave their final vote to 26 year old Mohamed ‘Mo’ Saouti from Ghent. In a coupleof months Mo will fly to New York where he’lle be going head tot head against the world’s best amateur skaters in the world. Whoever wins the AM final is automatically granted access to the Red Bull Manny Mania Pro Event the day after, and will be competing against the real ‘manual masters’, the pro’s of the international skateboarding circuit.
“Super stoked, but surprised,” was Mohamed Saouti’s first reaction. “In the finale I was up againts three strong riders whom I’ve known for quite some time now, so I was aware of their strenghts and skills. This made it a very thight and difficult final, which I didn’t expect to win. My goal was getting in the top three, so I’m incredibily happy with the win. What my expectations are for New York? I expect to see a lot of talent there, so I’ll better practise my manuals some more because I want to look good. And who knows, with a little luck… But I’m very much looking forward to going to New York – it’ll be my first time ever there – so no matter what happens, it’ll be fantastic!”
With 40 participants and about a 100 spectators the 2012 edition of the Belgian Red Bull Manny Mania proved yet again to be a success. Bad weather forecasts forced the team to move the event ‘last minute’ from the outdoor skate course of Kapermolenpark in Hasselt to the indoor skate park ZumieZ in Wevelgem, but eventually everything worked out fine. The final was a battle between Jonathan Franc, last year’s winner Maarten De Ryck, favourite Steve Achten and Mohamed Saouti. Mo convinced the jury with an amazing kickflip manual to crooked grind and a superb blunt slide to manual. These 2 tricks and a very consistent level of manual skating won him a ticket to the Big Apple where he’ll be competing in the Red Bull Manny Mania World Final against the national champions from 12 other countries from all over the world.