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Monday, May 23, 2011

Chris Cole in line to get at $1 million bonus

Chris Cole is waiting in line to get a chance to win a $1 million bonus this fall at the Maloof contest in Orange County, next fall.

Sacramento Kings co-owner Joe Maloof came up with the idea last year of a $1 million bonus for any skater who could win four straight Maloof Money Cups. Cole won his third straight Maloof contest last summer, but then joined the rival Street League.

Maloof officials said last week that Chris Cole is contracted to skate Orange County, the fourth Maloof contest this year. If Cole wins, he'll get the $1 million bonus plus the largest first-place prize of any contest, $250,000.

If a skater wins the first three Maloof contests this year, he'll be eligible to compete with Cole for the $1 million bonus.

"I'm excited to skate Maloof Money Cup Orange County for a shot a million dollars," Cole said. "It's going to be a tough competition, but just to have this chance is unbelievable. This is such a positive thing for skateboarding. Something like this has never been done and I'm just grateful to the Maloofs for the opportunity."

Cole won the Maloof Money Cup Orange County in 2009, the inaugural Maloof Money Cup New York last year and then repeated in Orange County, earning a total of $300,000.

"Even though Chris signed an exclusive agreement with another contest, we felt that this is such a huge milestone for skateboarding that nothing else matters," Maloof said. "This is an incredible opportunity and one we hope will bring attention to the skateboarding industry and these incredible pros who have dedicated their lives to skateboarding.

"The only thing better than one skater going for a million, is two," Maloof added. "By moving Chris' million-dollar contest to Orange County, there's an opportunity for another pro to win three Maloof Money Cup events this year, making him eligible to compete, alongside Chris, for the $1 million bonus in Orange County."

Street League founder Rob Dyrdek said he's not going to stand in Cole's way, although he said it's strange Cole will go for the bonus in the final Maloof Money Cup of the year rather than the first.

"If you want to give Chris Cole a million dollars to win one contest, we're going to let that happen," Dyrdek said Tuesday.

The date for the Orange County contest hasn't been set. It's being moved from the Orange County Fairgrounds in Costa Mesa to a new Vans skate park proposed for Huntington Beach.

Cole will be one of eight wild-card entries in the field of 24, which will include the top 16 Maloof All Pros from contests in New York and Washington, D.C. Those 16 will represent the U.S. in the Maloof Money Cup South Africa world skateboarding championships.

The Maloof Money Cup New York is June 4-5 at the skate park that was built last year in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens. The first-place prize has been increased from $100,000 to $160,000. Among the invited skaters are Geoff Rowley, Greg Lutzka, Andrew Reynolds, Tom Asta, Brandon Westgate, David Gravette, winner of the best trick contest at last year's Maloof Money Cup Orange County, and Dennis Busenitz, the Tampa Pro 2011 winner.

Rowley helped design the New York course, which became a permanent skate park.

The next contests are in Washington, D.C., Sept. 3-4, and Kimberley, South Africa, Sept. 30-Oct. 2.

New Maloof Money Cup director Mark Waters said organizers are unveiling a head-to-head jam format.

"Just like skateboarding on the street, with this format guys won't be able to play it safe," he said. "They'll be constantly pushing progression and that's why the energy of a Maloof contest, and the level of skating displayed, is like nothing else out there."


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posted by Xavier Lannes @ Monday, May 23, 2011 


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