The Red Bull Joyride slopestyle event was bigger than ever and finally Semenuk brings home the bacon in front of his home crowd. This is a very quick post with some one of a kind photos courtesy of James ‘gotta get to the pub’ Allan and it will be updated with more information as it comes to light.
Brandon Semenuk is a robot. On his first run he was hitting all his lines and tricks but bundled himself into the ground on the last feature much like last year. However, this year he didn't destroy his shoulder and he was able to put together a flawless run, top to bottom, on his second attempt. Tailwhips, loops, bars, and whirlybirds were the order of the day and the silent genius served up a full plate of action.
Anthony Messere is 15 years old. 15!!! When I was 15 years old I was too shy to say boo to a goose but somehow this young gun has the psychological fortitude, the skills and the balls to get up in front of 40,000 people (my official made up number until Whistler announce their own official made up number) and do some of the most daring and exciting riding that slopestyle has ever seen. He didn't just do a selection of tidy, in-vogue tricks but he did them often way higher off the ground than anyone else. He boosted the hip so high that he almost ran out of landing. Unfortunately on his third run he did run out of landing and took a digger, putting an end to his devilish rampage that could have so easily had him on the top of the box. Plenty more years ahead.
I smell a lucrative energy drink helmet deal around the corner. 15!!! WTF Anthony Messere?
Kelly McGarry automatically qualified for the final because of his result last year. Here you can see him calling in the riot police before his first run in case the Kiwi crowd really got out of hand...
First run, first feature. Kelly was on for a making mountain bike history but two more stunts after this he dived headfirst into the annals of time.
I have been trying to track Kelly down to see if he is all right after this crash as he was last seen in a sling. As soon as we know what the score is we'll let you know. Either way this tumble prematurely ended Kelly's Joyride event.
Spot Kelly. The crowd was massive this year. So huge. The highway into Whistler was nose to tail full of cars pouring into town for this one event. Everywhere you looked there were people partying or getting their fix of monster madness (actually no Monster this year thank goodness). Most of the people there were non-bikers as well, it seemed. A lot of dudes and even more very hot women came to town and as I type this many of them are probably making a series of alcohol fueled mistakes. Crankworx is without a doubt the biggest mountain bike event in the world. Nothing comes close I believe.
Cam Zink showing he wasn't just a one year wonder, taking second place. The guy is so burly and knows how to lay it down. Serious props to him. All three of the top riders could have won and all three put on an exciting show. Thank you.
The only downside was that yet again the victor was able to just do a victory run down the hill instead of battling to the last go. It is just a matter of the format allowing this to happen, combined with the last few riders not quite being able to stick their do or die last run. I don't know how you could change this and still keep it fair but it is just a shame for all the spectators who are left with an anti-climax. Saying that, Semenuk's fist pump off the last feature was sublime and the crowd appreciated it. Well deserved and overdue. He's $25,000 better off and he will also get the key to the town soon.