Last weekend the Russian YoYo Contest is Moscow. YoYoFactory Contest Team member Victor Gravitsky took home top honors as 1A Champion for the 3rd time. Also internationally from YoYoFactory was Augie Fash (2nd place in International Division), Vashek Kroutil (former Czech National Champion) and Ann Connolly.
Ann always has a smile for the camera, even after flying half way around the world.
Jet lag, or just Augie?
Vashek and Russian YoYoFactory member Igor Galiev take a some time to relax during the contest.
No, this isn’t the afterparty. This IS the contest venue.
In 2009 YoYoFactory embarked on production of a followup video to Undeniable. Though it never came to fruition, we amassed some amazing footage and have finally opened the video vault.
The week before 2009 Worlds, YoYoFactory team members from all over the world posted up in a house in Orlando to hang out, practice and film. “Summer” is a glimpse into our week, working hard and playing hard.
With so many YoYoFactory players coming in from all corners of the world, we spent a lot of time at the airport. So what do we do while we wait? Film another video of course. Featuring Mateus Ganc (Poland) and Kentaro Kimura (Japan).
In 2009 YoYoFactory released an unprecedented 10 new models at the World YoYo Championships. Many of these were modern performance plastic yo-yos that heralded a “Death to Metal”. At the forefront of this was the Protostar. World and National Champion John Ando’s signature yo-yo. Throwing a special Midnight release, YoYoFactory demonstrated the amazing ability of the Protostar. We also filmed the entire release to give you a feel of the energy that night.
In the past decade, few players have had more influence in modern yo-yo play than these 3 players. True pillars of yo-yoing: Jason Lee, Kentaro Kimura and Yuuki Spencer have pushed tricks, style and boundaries on, and off, the stage. As part of our Undeniable series we are proud to share videos of these legends. Shot on location throughout the world including Italy, China, and Texas.
National Champion Jason Lee pioneered multiple styles of yo-yo tricks. Among the first to popularize “Slack” string tricks in the early 2000s, Jason’s second wave of influence came years later with his unique take on mounting the yo-yo between the fingers, often called “Chopsticks” style. Also known for his smooth, fluid movements, this video is a prime example of Jason’s undeniable legacy.
Kentaro has undeniably changed the way people play with yo-yos. His winning freestyle at the 2009 World Championships solidified his place in history with an unprecedented 3A freestyle that was years ahead of the game.
Yuuki Spencer’s track record is one for the history books. When most have their 15 minutes of fame as a YoYo champion, Yuuki has delivered some of the most groundbreaking routines in the past decade. In 2002, winning the World Championships at the young age of 13 could have seemed like a fluke. But without fail Yuuki brought freestyle after winning freestyle. Countless titles later, he regained status as World Champion in 2009. Yuuki’s resume and influence on today’s yo-yo play is Undeniable.
YoYoFactory has a final 888.11 of the year. Following classic styling of the industry cornerstone, this years 888 also had several updates.
The updates include a wider body and new weight distribution that brings the weight down 2.5 grams compared to the 888X.
Another update comes to the inside of the yo-yo. We have added a slight step to the bearing seat to widen the gap and reduce string contact with the inner wall.
Along with physical updates, we’ve created a special edition to pay homage to the birthplace of modern performance yo-yoing: 808 (Hawaii). The green base symbolizes the lush countryside, a splashed acid wash of blue represents the sky and ocean spray. Then, the splashes of red, like lava spewing from the volcanoes that made the islands.
2 general release (left and center) and the “808″ (right) 888.11, available now.
Over the last week YoYoFactory has been releasing select videos from the Undeniable DVD. National and World Champion, John Ando, has several of our favorite parts. Shot on location in Hong Kong, Japan and China providing a great backdrop to amazing yo-yoing.
First, we have his 1A video. After his 2008 World Championship win, John’s style and approach to tricks was adapted worldwide as the new standard of modern play. With his unique body moves and smooth string tricks, he is undeniably one of the best 1A yo-yo players in the world.
Beyond his revolutionary 1A, John is also 4 time US National 2A Champion. Rarely has a player ever had such a crossover resume.
2011 has been a stellar year for Harold Owens III. Seemingly out of no where, though we’ve had our eye on him for a while, he took the US contest season by storm. Garnishing quite a bit of attention with his high placing in every contest he entered, Harold joined the YoYoFactory Contest Team shortly before the World Championships.
And his performance at Worlds did not disappoint. Even though he barely missed finals, he became a true crowd favorite. After Worlds Harold had his sights set on one thing: US Nationals.
As he took the stage, he definitely “got his swagger back”. Flying through one of the most fluid, stylish freestyles of the day Harold took top honors: 1A US National Champion.
To commemorate his outstanding 2011 contest season YoYoFactory has created a special edition Catalyst, the same yo-yo he used to win Nationals. Available in 2 colors, these are already moving fast.
November 19th and 20th marked the 3rd year of 44Clash, held in Tokyo, Japan. This premiere event combines seasoned veterans from all over the world with new, up and coming stars of Japan. And YoYoFactory’s Paul Han was on hand to catch all the action.
The future. These kids haven’t been playing for long, but you wouldn’t know it by their amazing skill set.
Shu Takada and his father getting ready for his 2A freestyle. It’s always great to see the support players get from family and friends.
Some people in this picture have been yo-yoing longer then another has been able to walk. Any guesses who?
Family. Friends. Players. Competitors. The combination is what makes the crowd at 44Clash one of the most electric in the world.
You’ll have to be one of the best in the world to take home one of these souvenirs.
But these are a little easier to come by. 44Clash 2011 Avant Garde. Every year we put together a special edition to support the contest. This year we pulled out all the stops. Available in Purple or Gold.
x Division Winners
2A Winners- Congratulations to YoYoFactory Team member Shu Takada
A month ago Clint Armstrong was just a kid we saw at contests. Somewhere along the way his sponsor decided he would be better off with us. We didn’t really know him at the time but liked him a lot once we got to know him.
Clint plays YoYo. ALL THE TIME. Welcome to YoYoFactory Contest team.
This year at US Nationals Clint scored a PERFECT in his prelim. And if you think that’s good, you should see him practice for Worlds. This kid is going places.
When we took the first look at our new Stainless steel whistling yo-yo the idea was already there to film a short video. It was a ‘return to retro’ concept with dare I say, ‘futuristic’ styling and interchangeable response system. Inspiration was drawn from MANY time periods.
All we needed then was the worlds most famous Stainless Steel Car and a $6,000 pair of shoes…
“We rolled up in our van. Its pretty easy to spot a car with strobes, neons and speakers blazing a movie soundtrack”
“Before the sun set we took it for a drive. Speed limits weren’t the only thing that kept it below 88. The owner says it would need to be going downhill, with a tailwind, to get close”
“Feeling like cinderella, they fit like a glove”
“Ironically the shoes were much more comfortable than the car”
“Our budget for the shoot was $30. That bought a smoke machine, liquid for it and a bottle of lighter fluid.”
“I could play with this for hours” (unidentified crew member hopefully talking about the yoyo). Kids, don’t play with fire, despite how fun it looks.
“In the end it was a super fun night. The yo-yo is super fun too. Hope you enjoy the video”