TWS 10: Memorable Tow-Ins

On the occasion of this 3onth's cover being a tow-in, we decided to listicle the most memorable motorized vehicle assists. Before we get into the nitty-gritty, let's take a second to salute tow-in OG and Hill Valley, California, skateboard legend Marty McFly. Marty invented the tow-in back in 1955 (and according to some, invented the skateboard itself, along with revolutionizing the electric guitar solo at the "Enchantment Under The Sea" Hill Valley High dance that year) after breaking the handlebars off a milk-crate scooter and outsmarting a band of local hoodlums led by notorious date rapist Biff Tannen in a high-speed chase through downtown. Having briefly resurfaced in the mid-80s as a factory flow rider of Madrid Valterra boards, Marty is currently missing in action and was last seen living in a broken-down '85 DeLorean DMC-12 off a freeway on-ramp in Hollywood—allegedly begging passersby for plutonium. Stay up, Marty.
—Mackenzie Eisenhour

(Homepage Illustration / Kyle Metcalf)

1. Wade Burkitt: Thrill Of It All, 1997
Burkitt's part-ending van tow-in to plus-sized pole jam in the first Zero video is the first one to come to mind. Go watch this part right now. It's one of my all-time favorites, and Wade's style to some power-chord AC/DC is eternally timeless. #highwaytohell.


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2. Heath Kirchart: Mind Field, 2008
In other eternally timeless news, Heath's Mind Field part continues to look better by the day. A truly great video part tends to do this. His tow-in double-lane street gap kickflip and backside flip (and later all-white Stay Gold frontside flip) remains imperial.

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3. Brandon Westgate: Made, Chapter One, 2013
2013 TWS Best Part winner, Brandon Westgate, needed some motorized help of his own in Made—but only because human legs could not possibly push fast enough to vault up that ridiculous over head-high loading dock/small house he ollies up in the part.

Download Made Chapter One

4. Gonz: Non-Fiction and Real To Reel, 1996 and 2001
This one is sort of a two-for-one Gonz entry: First, for his getting towed down Sunset Boulevard in Non-Fiction and skating curb cuts between tows; and second, for his motorcycle hitch to ollie that same motorcycle (along with Max Schaaf) in Real To Reel.


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5. Julien Stranger: SkyPager, 1993
Anything from Julien is memorable times 10, and his Underworld Element part—the one that ends with the most perplexing gap-to-tailslide ever—also contains a clip of him unsuccessfully attempting to be towed in to those Atlanta brick tranny walls at Mach 10.


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6. Arto, Fred, and Geoff: Sorry, 2002
Another combo deal—Flip's über classic OG Sorry had two memorable tow-ins. The first being Rowley's scooter boost to bump-to-gap frontside flip, and the second of course being Arto and Fred both towing-in to the "Rock 'n' Roll Suicide" opening tailside doubles.


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7. Raven Tershy: Pretty Sweet, 2012
Raven's tow-in to massive frontside pivot in China is somewhat of a no-brainer, so let me shamelessly add Danny Way breaking the skateboarding land-speed world record in '09 (74 mph) thanks to a tow from Rob Dyrdek and his modified race car.


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8. Anthony Schultz: $lave Pro Part, 2011
Tow-ins obviously open up possibilities that would never be there otherwise. Anthony's motorcycle assist to ollie off the top of the big bank and over the double-overhead Patrick Henry school fence in San Diego is a prime example of said impossible possibilities.


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9. Steve Forstner: The Wedge, 2009
Finally, after over a decade of rumors alleging a Randy Colvin mongo-footed attempt and possible deck-check, Steve Forstner came out from Europe, understood the need for a tow-in, and became the first-ever documented conqueror of the legendary AZ "Wedge" gap.


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10. Dolan Stearns: TWS Cover, MAY 2014
Memorable in that you just saw it on the cover, and perhaps because he isn't donning those overalls—recent last-part holder of Meet The Lurkers (in which he also front 180s the aforementioned Patrick Henry fence) was towed in to this doozy of a tree field goal. It's good.

Dolan Stearns revs up to make a tree field goal for the May 2014 cover. Illustration / Kyle Metcalf