French Crew Win Breakdancing Cup

Vagabonds win the Braun Battle of the Year 2012

At a packed Park & Suites Arena in the city of Montpellier, 19 of the world's best b-boy crews faced-off last night (Nov 17th) in the world championship of breakdancing, the Braun Battle of the Year (BOTY).

After an epic night of b-boy action French crew Vagabonds were crowned the 2012 Braun Battle of the Year champions for the second year in a row after an electric battle against Flooriorz of Japan. Vagabonds secured their victory with another signature display of incredible power moves, fast and furious footwork and choreographed routines that left the crowd whooping and screaming in delight.

Judge Niek Traa, said afterwards: "It's well deserved. You could see the difference in the quality of their show. It really stood out. And they didn't make any mistakes in the final battle."

It was a great result for French fans who could not contain their delight at another home victory but it was disappointment for the Asian and other crews who had travelled far.

The finals attracted crews from all over the world. Throughout the year, regional qualifiers took place. The countries represented were: Spain, Israel, Japan, Morroco, Italy, France, South Africa, Germany, Belarus, Algeria, Greece, Tunisia, Taiwan, Belgium, Austria, Korea, Nigeria and Singapore. (Crew biogs available here:

The night unfolded with each crew performing a six-minute choreographed routine. The five judges looked at synchronicity, stage-presence, choreography and their choice of music. In contrast to previous years, the six best crews, not four, then went forward to the final battles stage. This, said organizer Thomas Hergenröther, was a concession to the fans who wanted to see more battles.

"Hip-hop is all about the battles. It's what the guys want to do and what the fans love to watch. Having six makes it much more interesting!"

Being spontaneous, the battles produced some of the wildest action as the crews went head to head in a bid to out perform each other. Last night, the atmosphere reached fever pitch as each crew raised the bar with a succession of dramatic dance sequences including flips, freezes, spins and rehearsed routines.

On top of the main event, there were a series of gigs, workshops, 1 vs 1 and We B*Girlz battles, parties and much more that make Braun BOTY an all-round hip-hop extravaganza! On Friday night, at the Palais des Sports Nagi & Nao from Japan took the We B*Girlz title while Niek from Holland won the 1 vs 1 for the second year in a row. (Results and report here:

The night was hosted by MCs Maleek and Nasty from France while DJs Nobunaga AKA Panic and One Up were on the decks heating up the vibes with their funky breaks and versatility. Comments Thomas Hergenröther: It was a fantastic night and I'd like to congratulate all the crews for taking part and the fans for their support."

Last night it was announced that after three years in France, the final will return to Germany in 2013. Adds Hergenröther: "The last three years have been the perfect partnership with the city of Montpellier. We're leaving with a little sadness but also looking forward to returning to Germany where BOTY started."

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About Battle of the Year:
BOTY started in Germany in 1990 and is now the longest-running and biggest b-boying competition in the world. It's a unique celebration of hip hop and a way of spreading the culture to a younger generation and wider audience. Following its long-term commitments to b-boying —including to its ambassadors b-boy Ronnie Abaldonado and DJ Lean Rock — Braun and its cruZer range of shavers and trimmers are proud to present the 2012 edition of the Battle of the Year.

*Battle of the Year (3D), the movie, will be released in 2013. It tells the story of an American crew battling to make the final and was partly filmed during the 2011 Braun Battle of the Year finals. Check out the official trailer at this link:




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