Full marks for Full Tilt
THE roar of motorcycle engines permeated the air at the second staging of Full Tilt held at Michi Supercentre on Washington Boulevard in St Andrew on Sunday.
"Motorcycle stunt riding is a well-loved underground sport in Jamaica, but it is not always done in a safe manner. Full Tilt is a treat for the entire family and we have incorporated some drifting for added excitement," promoter Dwayne Virgo told Auto.
From behind barricade rails, patrons watched as Jamaica's motorcycle stunt riders showcased their death-defying skills. Montego Bay's Damion 'Dunga' Hughes and Romond 'Gichie' Gichie; Kingston's Marlon 'Crazy Cutter' Fletcher; and American guest rider Aaron Twite led the charge with dazzling displays of wheelies, endos, highchairs, flips, and freestyle tricks involving fearless females.
"International riders bring different tricks which will ultimately help to develop local riders. You could look at it as a cross-culture swop," Virgo added.
Virgo's assessments were correct, as the Atlanta-based Twite quickly won over fans with his arsenal of one-wheeled stunts. He even stood upright on the tank of his 600 Ninja Kawaski while in motion and waved to his new-found fans.
"I'm grateful for the opportunity to ride in Jamaica. I had a lot of fun. Jamaican riders have a positive energy and a style of their own," said the 32-year-old Twite, who was visiting the island for the first time.
According to Twite, who has been riding for 10 years, he was just returning from a pre-race promotion for Formula One in Malaysia.
"I've done shows in America, France, Mexico, Indonesia, and all over Europe," the American rider said.
Brothers Dean, 11, and Damari Jordan, 10, also shared the spotlight with the seasoned campaigners. The Deanery Road-based Clan Carthy Primary School students elicited applause, with each shifting from pillion to rider while their trail bike was in motion.
Montego Bay's drifting king Cleve 'Cutta Hype' Ottey had the crowd on the edge of their figurative seats by drifting around three women placed at various points on the course.
Stunt rider and racer Halquin 'Pugu' Rodney traded his motorcycle for emcee duties.
Last year's staging of Full Tilt was held on the grounds of the National Stadium in St Andrew.