SALT LAKE CITY — Attempting a 360-backflip on the very first jump of the BMX dirt course wasn't what Colton Satterfield wanted to do.
But the competition to get into Saturday's final required something a little more "burly."
"For it to work out on my first go was awesome," said the Orem resident, who qualified with the fourth-best score of Friday's semi-final. "Dirt is really precise…It's so hard to make the finals at the Dew Tour, I simply had to do a really big trick."
Big tricks paid off for a number of riders, including England's Ben Wallace, who earned the day's highest score.
"Everybody rode so well," said Wallace, who is enjoying his best season on the Dew Tour. "I had so much fun. And I think every time I have fun, I do a lot better."
For Wallace, it wasn't just competing with the other riders that challenged him Friday.
"It was really tough today," he said, smiling. "Especially the heat beats it out of you as well. Being from England, it's never this hot, and so high altitude, it's just totally different here."
He said he did his best to counter the effects of the heat and altitude.
"My mouth is dry, my lips are getting real dry, and I'm getting really tired, really quick," said Wallace, who rides for Mongoose and Monster Energy. "I'm drinking plenty of water, but it was a tough competition. Everybody rode so well."
Wallace is coming off a fifth-place finish in the Dew Tour's first stop. He said a little luck is all he needed to roll out a record year for himself.
"This is my best year so far, and I'm so happy with the way things are going for me," he said. "I think the reason why it's my best year is because I'm injury free. Last year I had a broken heel, twisted knee, and a bad wrist. I was probably feeling 50 percent."
Wallace said he plans to attempt some tough, new tricks in Saturday's final in hopes of landing himself on the podium.
"I'm going to stay healthy, but also going to try to push myself to do well," Wallace said. "I'd love to come away with a podium position. That would be awesome. I'm not going to bust my own balls to do it, but if it happens, I'm going to be happy…(New tricks) are a possibility. There's a couple of things I'd like to do. Whether they do work or not, who knows, but I'm going to try."
The enthusiasm for the event in Salt Lake City was truly evident as there were lines around the venue and many fans were actually turned away at the gates.
Friday's competition included three semifinal rounds.
Pedro Barros qualified first in Friday's skate vert semifinal at EnergySolutions Arena. The skaters who qualified for Saturday's 2:30 p.m. final are: 1. Pedro Barros; 2. Danny Mayer; 3. Adam Taylor; 4. Andy MacDonald; 5. Bob Burnquist; 6. Sandro Dias; 7. Sam Beckett. Shaun White, Pierre-Luc Gagnon and Bucky Lasek pre-qualified for the final.
1. Ben Wallace qualified first in Friday's BMX dirt semifinal, followed by 2. Jaie Toohey; 3. Brett Banasiewicz; 4. Josh Hult; and 5. Colton Satterfield. In the BMX vert final order is 1. Jorge Jovel; 2. John Parker; 3. Jimmy Walker; 4. Dennis McCoy; 5. Austin Coleman.