Every Friday in The Weekender we take a look at the best videos from the week that was—like the release of a trailer for the Nas-produced skateboarding film, The Land —and give you a preview of some of the most important events in the world of action and outdoor sports coming up this weekend.
First Combat Amputee Summits Everest
It’s been a long three years but yesterday, Charlie Linville, a Marine who lost the lower part of his right leg when he stepped on an unexploded bomb in Afghanistan, became the first combat amputee to summit Everest yesterday. His last two attempts were thwarted by disasters in Nepal. Last year, he was reportedly eating lunch at base camp when an earthquake rocked the country. Climbing Everest takes a massive amount of time and effort and it’s been strain on his family (he has two daughters with his wife, Mandi). “The commitment to Everest has been number one,” Linville, who lives in Boise, I.D., told USA Today in April. “The family has been on the back-burner and it’s been a struggle with the wife and kids.…They always ask me, ‘When are you coming home.’ And it’s difficult. But I believe in what the power of getting to the top will show disabled veterans and that’s important to me.'”
Big Win for a Popular Young Legend
John John Florence, one of the more popular surfers in the world, finished off an impressive run yesterday in Brazil when he took down current world champion Adriana de Souza in the semi-finals of the Oi Rio Pro then beat young Australian upstart Jack Freestone for the third event win of his career. The win catapulted him into third place on the ratings and frothed up his minions on social media as pundits and fans immediately started talking world title run. That’ll be a tall order for the 23-year-old Hawaiian who carries himself with extreme humility—part of the reason for his popularity (that goes hand in hand with his electric brand of surfing). He’s still some 5,800 points behind ratings leader Matt Wilkinson in the rankings. But the tour is heading into the meat of the schedule with Fiji, South Africa’s Jeffreys Bay, Tahiti and California’s Trestles event upcoming. All places where Florence has thrived in the past.
Rapper Nas Produces Skateboarding Crime Drama, The Land
Due for its U.S. release on July 29, The Land, produced by Nas and directed by Steven Caple Jr., is a gritty urban drama set in Cleveland about four destitute youths who use skateboarding as an outlet. They find a bag of drugs in a stolen car and begin selling them to help their families—they’re convinced they can use the winnings to enter a big skateboard contest and make it big. Chaos ensues. The film debuted at the Sundance Film Festival and features the music of Nas, Kanye West, Erykah Badu (who also stars in the flick) and more. The film received a modest review from Variety after its debut at the Utah film fest and should be a fun summer movie with skateboarding as a centerpiece.
What’s On Tap
Red Bull Global Rallycross
Redbull.tv | Saturday, 4 p.m. EST
Rally car racers will kick off their season in Phoenix, Arizona this weekend for the first time ever. Rally cars run point to point, not on a track.
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup
Redbull.tv| Saturday, 5:00 a.m. EST
The World Cup mountain bike tour heads to the small town of Albstadt, Germany this weekend for the cross-country portion of the series.