Don’s World: Lonnie Leonelli Hosts the 2016 Barrett Junction Outlaw
Last month, after a length of darkness, I found myself back in action, squinting in the clear dry air of southernmost Southern California, sitting on a familiar nasty hairpin right, in a road which hasn’t seen pity in decades. Some of the crappiest asphalt in the world. And here I was waiting for longboarders to fly by.
For a few years in a row, I’ve come down to the Barrett Junction Outlaw to watch death-defying racing in both lay-down and stand-up categories, on a winding crumbly, fissured, fractured, snaky run of asphalt people are still calling a road.
Joe Marshall was in charge of this party for many years. Max Capps took it up after that, but suddenly this year Lonnie Leonelli stepped up. So here’s Lonnie with some words and me with some photos. Enjoy!
Barrett 2016 was an epic event! I got a call from Max Capps a couple months before the event, asking me to host it. I was super stoked to host an outlaw event with so much history. Saturday night sitting around the campfire talking with John Rogers, I found out that this was the 16th year this event has gone on. Not a lot of people know that this, but Barrett was the time trials hill for X-games when luge and downhill were included. Once I heard that, I was super stoked and to hear that so many legends have been skating this hill it was more like an honor to host and skate it.
Friday I loaded up the car, picked up the homies and headed out to the hill. Stoked to see how many people were going to show up. I had the trophies all figured out in Max Capps style thrift store finds and all the swag from the sponsors Madrid, Rogue, Venom, Cadillac, Trojan, and Muir skate; without them this wouldn’t have happened.
We get out there Friday night to find that we were the only ones out there till around midnight, when people started to show up. Saturday morning rolls up and we do the usual, get a dawn patrol run on the hill then we hit Barrett cafe for the bomb breakfast buffet. The people who run this cafe love when we come out there every year. They pull out Don “Waldo” Autry‘s luge that he threw together with Rollerblade wheels crutches and trucks. It is so awesome. They also have a picture from Waldo doing the jump in San Fran. Legendary. After food and talking with everyone we head to the hill to set up for everyone and wait for the rest of people to get there.
This was the 16th year this event has gone on. Not a lot of people know that this, but Barrett was the time trials hill for X-games
Mid-Saturday comes with a full belly and I decided to have some fun with the kids and we run Chinese downhill for a set of Venom Cobra Core wheels and everyone was stoked on doing it. The winner of the Chinese downhill was Dmitri Menas, a kid that is all about Full Circle brands and an up and coming shredder. We only had 1 crash by Sarah Heim where she thrashed her knee up but still hung out and partied with everyone. The day was getting, time to wind down and get ready for sunday, but what’s a Barrett without someone going too hard? As I got in my tent I heard someone puking – there always has to be the guy that goes hard, ha ha ha! Good times skating and camping.
Sunday morning is race day and everyone is up and getting ready to head to the cafe for some food. We get to the cafe and we got like 30 people there talking about past Barrett and the history of it and who has been here – it was good to talk and hear about the history of it. We all finish and head to the hill to get some practice runs in before we start the event.
It was an awesome turnout and we almost had the same amount of luge entries as we did downhill skaters. We ran luge first all the way to finals and we did downhill all the way to finals so we could run both finals at the end. Everything went smooth until the semi-finals when Greg Paproski had a bad crash ended up breaking his helmet he hit the ground so hard. Scott and Joe heard it behind them with their helmets on and they look back to see he went down. Not caring about winning but caring about the skate family they stop and check him to see if he is ok. So many good and caring people in this sport!
Greg was ok he just got his bell rung a bit, but he was a trooper and glad he came out alright. That crash helped determine finals. Luge would be John Rogers, Ryan Farmer, Torey Norell, and Mike McIntyre and Open DH final heat was Scott Lembach, Joe Gutkowski, Dmitri Menas, and Tim Del. These are some stacked finals and we were getting some awesome racing. I didn’t get to follow the luge down but got to follow open DH and it was awesome.
Tim Del took it easy off the line as Scott, Joe and Dmitri charge into it. Tim Del is in last all the way to the start of the straight, then he gets in his tuck and takes off passing Dmitri and starts pulling on Joe, gets Joe just after the last corner coming to the last stretch and uses Joe’s draft to give him a boost to pull on Scott to take the win. It was an awesome final and I was super stoked I got to see the finals in such a good race with awesome people. It couldn’t have gone better.
Just want to say thanks to all the people who came out and for all the photos especially Mr. Don Sheffer, and Stretch from 1904 photography. You guys got some awesome pics and I am sure all the riders were stoked. Big thanks to Full Circle Distribution and Muirskate for the shuttle and the swag you guys are awesome.
Thanks to Max Capps for passing the torch to me it was a blast and I plan on making the trip out there for all the other Barretts that go on thanks guys love you FAM. All the love, Lonnie Leonelli.[Photos thanks to Don Sheffler! Read more Don’s World posts here.] [Photos thanks to Don Sheffler! Read more Don’s World posts here.]