Spoke Magazine

Casey Brown in Death Grip

Posted by Caleb Smith on Monday November 11 2013

One time Kiwi lass and recent visitor to our shores Casey Jane Brown brings the heat in this, the fourth short film in Anthill’s Dream Capture Series.

The feeling of travelling through space at vision-blurring speeds is exhilarating, albeit terrifying, but that’s why we crave it. For mountain bikers, going fast is just a part of what we do, but we do it knowing we have a safety net: brakes. But imagine if you didn’t have brakes to stop you? Imagine voluntarily riding brakeless? Meet Casey Brown.

DG_PB_0004_Portrait

“It felt as if I was just a passenger on an unstoppable roller coaster. Your stomach is in your throat the whole time, especially right before you drop in.” – Casey Brown Death Grip – Casey Brown Portrait by Harookz

Sounds like a good time, right?

“I’ve been behind the camera for some pretty intense moments in mountain biking, and even after 10 years it hasn’t gotten any easier watching a rider put their safety on the line. When we were standing at the top of the Death Grip line it’s so steep that the trail rolls over into nothingness after the first hundred feet. Watching Casey disappear over the edge with howling crosswinds and no brakes on her bike has to be one the scariest things I’ve ever seen go down.” – Darcy Wittenburg

DG_PB_0013_Brakeless_HeadonCasey Brown riding brakeless on the Death Grip Line – by Harookz

DG_PB_0001_Brakeless_LineThe Death Grip line was steep, long, and dusty, with no protection from the wind. There was no margin for error, but still, people seem to think it’s “easy”. Casey’s response to those comments?

“Hahaha! Come give it a go! But bring extra underpants! It’s a lot different riding without brakes on your bike as opposed to riding and just not using them. You definitely have to shut down the part of your brain that says, ‘Make sensible decisions,’ and make sure you hold on for dear life.”

DG_PB_0015_Brake_Caliper

So, would you ride the Death Grip line brakeless?

All Photography by Harookz.

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