Red Bull Joyride Photo Epic - Crankworx Whistler 2017

Aug 21, 2017
by Dave Trumpore  




As a spectator and fan, it’s incredibly hard to know just how much of the result at Red Bull Joyride comes down to what is surely an immense level of pressure to perform on the biggest stage of the year, the weather/the wind, or the sheer length of the course. Given that quite a few riders saw their run go wrong pretty early on in the course sort of rules out the latter, but for those that slip up further down, perhaps it’s a part of it?

However, there has to be a level of stress affecting the riders that we mortals can’t fathom, but with them being the professional athletes that they are, they’re surely okay with it, at least to an extent. Then there is the wind. This year a number of the big events have dealt with less than favourable wind and today we saw it affect a number of the worlds best, including Triple Crown hopeful, Nicholi Rogatkin, causing him to slip up on a relatively straight forward (for him) barspin on the shark fin before the big final feature. Even Semenuk had his issues due to it, with his victory lap slowed by a gust that resulted in him being caught in a big whip off the second jump of the four-pack.

It was a different setting to previous years for Semenuk and fans, though. The now five-time victor of the biggest slopestyle event in the world started out completely “cold turkey”, being the first rider down the course when it counted, not having the opportunity to watch any of his peers ride before him and get the adrenaline flowing. It didn’t really seem to bother him though, stomping the entire run first thing in the morning, first time, with all of the pressure. He slipped up on a couple of tricks where he wanted more, but in the end he knew that a second run would give him the opportunity to expand on those holes in his run; including a more extended version of his backflip candy bar—the first seen in competition—off the massive final drop into the finish corral. Fortunately for him, he never needed that second run.

Young Swede, Emil Johansson was looking to continue his already stellar 2017, and no doubt improve on his fourth place here in 2016—the very event where he exploded onto the world stage of slopestyle and became a name to note. Emil’s first run, the one that held him in that second place position, seemed almost like a warm-up for him. With little upsetting him all of the way down the course, including the second jump in the four-pack, which had been giving him problems all week long. The stylish tech wizard threw combination after combination all the way down with the effortless style and flow that we’ve come to expect from him. It looked like he had more in the tank, but during his second run, while trying to improve his score, he slipped up one too many times and missed a couple of extra moves, resulting in a score that couldn’t improve on his first.

Ryan Nyquist, the legendary BMX rider and recent transplant to slopestyle mtb, put in a stormer of a first run, landing himself in a podium position until Messere bumped him temporarily. His second run contained a couple of added combinations and links, including a 720 barspin into an opposite 360 suicide no-hander over the hip, but he held it together to the bottom, somehow continuing to throw down big combos after small slip-ups that would have seen many other competitors straight air the next feature. He finished the run with a score that just edged out Messere (84.8 over Messere’s 84.2) and landed him his first podium appearance at a Diamond Series event.


Once again the crowds came out in huge numbers to party in the Boneyard.
Once again the crowds came out in huge numbers to party in the Boneyard.

Semenuk and Vencl on the commute to work.
Semenuk and Vencl on the morning commute.

The kid who made massive waves on the scene back in 2011 Anthony Messere ready for finals.
The kid who made massive waves on the scene back in 2011; Anthony Messere ready for finals.

Godziek never comes to Crankworx contest without full commitment to his massive tricks.
Godziek never comes to Crankworx contest without full commitment to his massive tricks.

Godziek and Lemoine look on as Semenuk gives the competition a taste of what they ll be up against.




A good amount of the world's best slopestyle riders struggled to put a clean run in on the challenging Joyride course, with wind and nerves getting the better of many at least once during competition.




Godziek is a maniac.
Godziek is a maniac. Nothing but the fullest of extension will do for the Polish rider.

Szymon Godziek full extedned.
Szymon Godziek inverted, fully extended, mid backflip super-seater.

Godziek s flip super-seater was a thing of beauty.
Another run, another insane flip super-seater from Godziek.

Szymon Godziek trucking off the Joyride bar.
Szymon Godziek trucking out of the whale-trail.

Josh Hult from the USA came and did himself proud on the Joyride course finishing mid-pack.
Josh Hult, the 33-year-old BMX rider from the USA came and did himself proud on the Joyride course, finishing mid-pack.

Nico Scholze is yet to put a big score on the board at Crankworx but remains one of the most exciting riders to watch with some insane tricks up his sleeve.
Nico Scholze is yet to put a big score on the board at Crankworx but remains one of the most exciting riders to watch.

Jakub Vencl with the 360 X-up from the start drop.
Jakub Vencl with the 360 X-up from the start drop.

Reserve rider Reed Boggs got the call for finals following Max Fredriksson s broken collar bone in the morning practice session.
Reserve rider, Reed Boggs got the call for finals, following Max Fredriksson's broken collar bone in the morning practice session.

Reed Boggs had one hell of a day getting subbed in last minute and storming to 8th place. The next time you ll see him will be out at Redbull Rampage.
Reed Boggs had one hell of a day, getting subbed in last minute and storming to 8th place. The next time you'll see him will be out at Redbull Rampage.

Tomas Lemoine spins the log jump as the last ray of light sets on the final training session.
Tomas Lemoine spins the cannon jump during training as the last ray of light sets.

It seemed Matt Jones had some fresh tactics up his sleeve here in Whistler after crashing out of the contests in both Les Gets and Innsbruck... this time he would go a little steadier on run 1 and put a solid score on the board.
It seemed Matt Jones had some fresh tactics up his sleeve here in Whistler after crashing out of the contests in both Les Gets and Innsbruck... this time he would go a little steadier on run one and put a solid score on the board.

Matt Jones turned up the heat big time for run 2 but crashed out on his double flip on the second jump.
Jones turned up the heat big time for run two but crashed out on his double flip on the second jump.

Matt Jones was on of many orders who struggled to put together solid runs from top to bottom.
Matt Jones was one of many riders who struggled to put together two runs from top to bottom.

Diego Caverzasi on a front flip rampage that claimed him 6th place.
Diego Caverzasi on a front flip rampage that claimed him 6th place.

Tomas Lemoine was in fine form and took 6th on the day.
Tomas Lemoine was in fine form and took 6th on the day.

Tomas Lemoine had an impressive combination of trick down the course but was unable to link everything together in his final tow runs.
Tomas Lemoine had an impressive combination of tricks down the course.

Back where it all began for Tommy G... home of his 2012 win as an almost completely unknown rider.
Back where it all began for Tommy G... home of his 2012 win as an almost completely unknown rider.

Thomas Genon spinning with style right out of the start.
Thomas Genon spinning with style right out of the start.

Unfortunately crashes would end Genon s day.
Unfortunately crashes would end Genon's day, coming unstuck on the trick that resulted in his ankle injury earlier in the year—the cashroll

Tomas Genon took a couple of hard slams and unfortunately would leave Whistler empty handed.
Tomas Genon took a couple of hard slams and unfortunately would leave Whistler empty handed.




The favorite's battled hard but were unlucky in their quest. All week people spoke of Rogatkin's chance at the Triple Crown and the possibility that Rheeder, who has battled with him since returning from injury, could put a stop to that dream.




Brett Rheeder was focused and determined all week even practicing in the rain while most others had called it a day.
Brett Rheeder was focused and determined all week, even practicing in the rain while most others had called it a day.

Brett Rheeder using up all the daylight trying to get his run dialed in earlier in the week.
Brett Rheeder using up all the daylight trying to get his run dialed in earlier in the week. Truckdriver out of the whale-tail

Brett Rheeder s back flip double tailwhip.
Brett Rheeder's backflip double tailwhip over the second hit in the four-pack was just barely cleaned.

Run one down and only 33.6 to show for it last year s winner had it all still to do.
Run one down and only 33.6 to show for it, last year's winner had it all still to do.

Brett Rheeder had the tricks but today just wasn t his day.
Brett Rheeder had the tricks, but today just wasn't his day.

Brett Rheeder making signature shapes.
Brett Rheeder making signature shapes.

Last year s champ here in Whistler feeling the nerves on the push up to the top.
Last year's champ here in Whistler feeling the nerves on the push up to the top.

 75 000 at stake and no chance of playing it safe Rogatkin had to come out swinging.
$75,000 at stake and no chance of playing it safe, Rogatkin had to come out swinging.

Rogatkin dropping in with it all on the line.
Rogatkin dropping in with it all on the line. Fast-plant 360 to kick things off.

Rogatkin stomping his fast plant 360 up top before it all went awry for the Bostonian.
Rogatkin stomping his fast-plant 360 up top, before it all went awry for the Bostonian.

Rokatkin pulling out the twister on an incredible beginning to his first run
Rokatkin pulling out the twister on an incredible beginning to his first run

Nicholi Rogatkin crashed in his first run and flatted in his second putting gan end to his hopes of winning the Crankworx Triple Crown.
Unfortunately, Nicholi Rogatkin crashed in his first run and flatted in his second after going too deep on a cashroll, putting an end to his hopes of winning the Crankworx Triple Crown.




With Rogatkin and Rheeder out, the battle for the podium intensified, with Emil Johansson, Anthony Messere, and the legend, Ryan Nyquist duking it out.



Anthony Messere went down hard on his first run but came back strong the second time around with an 84.2 that put him just off the podium.
Anthony Messere went down hard on his first run but came back strong the second time around with an 84.2 that put him just off the podium.

Anthony Messere styling his way into 4th.
Anthony Messere styling his way into 4th.

Messere s fresh trick in his quiver - the cashroll.
Messere's fresh trick in his quiver—the cashroll.

Old dogs and young guns Nyquist and Johansson only 2 metres and 20 years between them.
Old dogs and young guns; Nyquist and Johansson, only two meters and 20 years between them.

Ryan Nyquist struggled in practice but was able to pull it all together when it counted.
Ryan Nyquist struggled in practice but was able to pull it all together when it counted.

Ryan Nyquist 360 bar spin off the whale tail
Ryan Nyquist truck driver out of the whale tail

17 year old Emil Johansson was turning heads in practice and in the finals.
17-year-old Emil Johansson was turning heads all week long and it didn't stop come finals time.

Emil Johansson
Emil Johansson has so much style with the combos to count.

Emil Johansson pushing to de-throne C3 team mate Semenuk as the second last man on the hill.
Emil Johansson pushing to de-throne C3 team mate, Semenuk, as the second-last man on the hill. His corked 720 off the first hit in the four pack.

Emil Johansson
Emil Johansson three-whips out of the whale-tail.

Emil Johansson stomped his ru top to bottom to take 2nd.
Emil Johansson stomped his run top to bottom to take 2nd, including this stylish 360 can off the tricky cannon feature.

The future is very bright for this young rider.
The future is very bright for this young rider.




Semenuk threw down on the very first run of the day and had to wait patiently to see if any of his competitors would force him to tidy up a couple of little bobbles in his run. One by one they fell short, leaving him the winner of his fifth Red Bull Joyride.




Semenuk tweeks the goggles for the first and last time at a Crankworx event this season.
Semenuk tweaks the goggles for the first and last time at a Crankworx event this season.

Semenuk reversing into the Whsitler boneyard.
Semenuk got redemption with his half-cab into the Whistler boneyard, stomping it clean.

Brandon Semenuk came out swinging as the first rider down the hill.
Brandon Semenuk came out swinging as the first rider down the hill.

What kind of moves would Semenuk have pulled out if he was forced into a second run Take your best guess...
What kind of moves would Semenuk have pulled out if he was forced into a second run? Take your best guess...

Semenuk off the hut in his first run which would give him an 89.8 a score that would prove unbeatable.
Semenuk off the whale-tail in his first run which would give him an 89.8, a score that would prove unbeatable.

Semenuk missed his trick on the log jump and was only able to get in a backflip with no variation or combo.
Semenuk missed his trick on the cannon jump and was stuck with a straight flip with no variation or combo.

Semenuk 360 bearskin onto the final jump.
Semenuk 360 barspin onto the final feature.

Semenuk with the victory lap. He was the first and last rider on course and led the day from start to finish.
Semenuk with the victory lap. He was the first and last rider on course and led the day from start to finish.

Semenuk and the living legend Ryan Nyquist in the finish arena.
Semenuk and the living legend Ryan Nyquist congratulate each other in the finish arena.

A sigh of relief from Brandon Semenuk as he wins Red Bull Joyride for the 5th time.
A sigh of relief from Brandon Semenuk as he wins Red Bull Joyride for the 5th time.




Three generations of riders fill the 2017 Red Bull Joyride podium.




37 years old and still showing the kids how it s done. It s been an honor to Watch Ryan Nyquist progress in these contests over the past two years and today all the hard work payed off.
37 years old, and still showing the kids how it's done. It's been an honor to watch Ryan Nyquist progress in these contests over the past two years, and today all the hard work paid off.

Emil Johansson and Brandon Semenuk part the massive crowds on their way to the podium.
Emil Johansson and Brandon Semenuk part the massive crowds on their way to the podium.

Ripped shorts and all Ryan Nyquist keeping things old school and fun out there.
Ripped shorts and all, Ryan Nyquist keeping things old school and fun out there.

The final champagne shower of Crankworx courtesy of Brandon Semenuk Emil Johansson and Ryan Nyquist.
The final champagne shower of Crankworx courtesy of Brandon Semenuk, Emil Johansson, and Ryan Nyquist.

Semenuk Johansson and Nyquist go 1-2-3.
Semenuk, Johansson, and Nyquist go 1-2-3.

The 5 time Joyride Champ makes polishes things off as we close out another amazing week at Crankworx Whistler.
The 5-time Joyride Champ makes polishes things off as we close out another amazing week at Crankworx Whistler.

The stampede to the after party.
The stampede to the after party.

Five times a charm. Semenuk takes his astonishing fifth Joyride victory in his hometown of Whistler.
Five times a charm. Semenuk takes his astonishing fifth Joyride victory in his hometown of Whistler.



MENTIONS: @officialcrankworx / @redbullbike / @natedh9 @davetrumpore / @AJBarlas



44 Comments

  • + 61
 Anyone who wasn't cheering for Nyquist is devoid of soul. What an absolute legend.
  • + 3
 fucking loved it!
  • + 4
 My hands went up on impulse and I cheered at the screen. It was an awesome moment.
  • + 15
 Why have we all got to go along with it and say everything is epic and historic? As far as contests go I think this is one of the worst Joyrides ever. Some flashes of brilliance but any contest where the safe run score takes the win is a bit of an anticlimax, especially when that run was the first run of the event. The course just wasn't right for the riders to throw their biggest moves with confidence. It's ok, I can deal with that. We've had some other absolute banger contests this year and we still have Rampage to come.
  • + 62
 half cab, both way cork 7s, backflip candybar off the final drop.... yeah man, what a safety run. I mean what do these riders think they're doing putting it all on the line and crashing because its windy out!? ugh like total bore-fest. I don't care about the riders, only if I'm entertained! yeah screw it, nothing counts for me if they don't make it to the bottom and Nyquist doing an over-rotated 720 and then another one with a barspin at the age of 38? psht like total bore-fest.

I mean this was like totally worse than last years or a few years ago where the weather was so bad only 10% of the riders landed a clean run. WORST EVERRRR!!!

Fanboys sure are curious creatures.....
  • - 13
flag crysvb (Aug 21, 2017 at 7:37) (Below Threshold)
 I agree this was probably the most boring joyride, rogatkin threw down and nyquist was a beast but everything else was pretty anticlimatic
  • + 4
 @scott-townes: Some insane stuff happened undoubtedly, but it was anti-climatic with the first run being the winning run. Part of the problem may be the course design - I'm no expert but considering so many people crashed at Joyride compared to other slopestyle contests, maybe there's some course problems - or maybe it's just the pressure and/or the wind - I'm not sure
But it's not unfair to say that it was anticlimatic
  • + 6
 @scott-townes: Semenuk could have added to that run and you know it, we all know it. I'm not criticising any riders and I've already said there were a few great moments. All I'm saying is it was a shame the guys couldn't all throw their runs down because conditions weren't right. Rather than continue with the click bait 'Go down in history' stuff I think it's ok to say the event could have worked out better and move on.
  • + 3
 @JustinLund: Riders were praising the changes they made to the course and were saying nothing bad about it (side from the boner log being easy to overshoot). They were crashing on basic features or tricks at random points throughout the track. It was definitely the wind as multiple riders stated. People are overreacting.
  • + 0
 @scott-townes: another possible explanation... Semenuk is just plain lucky that he didn't get added to my fantasy team
  • + 1
 @thinkbike: hahaha I didn't add him either. I had Rogatkin, Rheeder, Nyquist and Torquato. whoops.
  • + 9
 It always sucks to see so many people not get the runs they wanted, I would have loved to see a complete Rheeder or Genon run. Besides that I'm still pretty confident that Semenuk still had a lot more in the tank if someone would have actually upped his score. Plus I'm pretty sure the judges missed the trick off the last feature so I think that run was worth more than a 89.
  • + 11
 It's strange that my bike won't do any of those tricks. Hmmm...I guess it must be broken.
  • + 2
 you just need a gyro!
  • + 7
 So... great event and all.. its a shame that a large number of riders were not able to complete their runs, BUT what really stood out for me this year was the camera work.. I mean come on RedBull... In a sport, where you need to really see whats happening with the bike and rider, you leave 99% on one camera, placed all the way at the bottom of the course, which also did not zoom in even once Smile I was only guessing the tricks on the first two jumps.. sucks, but hey, whats the replay fo.... oh its from the same camera ! Blank Stare i have a 24 inch screen, so nothing tiny, but stilll... next time, please educate your camera crew on the wonders of zooming, because most of us dont watch these on a 4m projector screen Smile )) great show though... Semenuk is The Professor Smile )
  • + 8
 I still can't believe Rogatkin lost his run to a barspin and the wind. That run was a serious threat to Semenuk! Really gutting to watch
  • + 3
 I didn't see him lose anything to the wind... both of his falls were due to lack of discipline, which results in the lack of consistency we see from him. He goes big and wins when he can make it to the bottom, but that's not 100% of the time.
  • + 2
 @Neechy: You may have a point there. I just can't explain to myself how else he would have lost the run to a barspin other than a gust of wind. It's a trick he probably doesn't even have to think about at this point when he throws it.
  • + 9
 Most dramatic moment- Semenuk trying to straighten his bars after his victory lap crash. Epic 120 seconds!
  • + 7
 It's so crazy that a backflip is no longer considered a high scoring trick "stuck with a straight flip with no variation or combo" All props to these guys given most of us could only dream of pulling that off!!
  • + 5
 Can someone please tell me what this backflip Candy bar is?
I was looking at the photo on his instagram and I was struggling to see how it was different to a backflip one foot can.
I'm clearly missing something so if someone in know could fill me in, that would be great.
Cheers
  • + 8
 Instead of putting his foot over the other side of the top tube, he put it over and in front of the handlebars.
  • + 1
 @fatfingur: that's what I thought had happened but the photo on his instagram makes it look like his leg is under the bars still.
  • + 13
 @samfr1000 One foot can is when you put your foot over the top tube. One foot Candy Bar is where you put your foot through the gap between your arm and the handlebars. The name Candy Bar I guess comes from it being a Can over the bars in turn becoming Can-dy-Bar
  • + 4
 @Trevelis: you just blew my mind ahaha
  • + 7
 Nyquist is the man, old school style+37 years old, a true exaple of full passion for the bike!
  • + 7
 Big whip into craaazzzy extension on that bar straighten from Semenuk tho!!
  • + 3
 The person bemoaning the camera angles is right. The biggest tricks were on the 2nd hit and they had NO camera on that part of the course. More than half the field disappeared behind it or were shown from WAY above doing who knows what. McCaul chatting during runs not letting us know the tricks (since we couldn't see them) was driving me nuts. He'd just gloss over something and you'd have no idea what someone banged out.

But for me the worst part of the whole thing was the chic getting paid to do finish line interviews...never did finish line interviews. Rogatkin wasn't interviewed? Seriously??? She'd be there for a rider, then disappear for a few riders and then be back. You could tell the booth guys would be staring at the screen waiting for someone to pop on camera and ask a few questions to either a distressed/crushed rider or to chirp about their stoke and pump.

Instead...dead air and guesses about the riders feelings.
  • + 2
 I'm glad that there were less post-ride interviews
She always asks the same questions (not her fault, I'm sure it's what she's told to do)

"How does it feel to land that run?"
"What do you need to do in run 2?"

You can tell most of the riders (with the exception of Rogatkin and maybe a couple others) hate it
Messere was laughing at her questions last time she interviewed him
  • + 1
 @JustinLund: I really wanted her to talk to Rogatkin. "bleep"
  • + 3
 I wish that they'd bring back the 3 run format. I think part od the reason that so many riders didnt finish a run was because of all the pressure. Adding an other run would definately help.
  • + 1
 Even though I was rooting for Semenuk I am still kind of disappointed with this year's competition. The course was so long that it was impossible for the most of the go big or go home riders to complete a run. If Rogatkin and Rheeder completed their runs, Brandon would've had to go all out which is much more interesting.
  • + 2
 Such a shame that Max got hurt during practice and that Rogatkin and Reeder didn't finish a full run to threaten Semenuks run.
  • + 2
 So glad Brandon didn't get hurt on his final cruise through. Crash looked bad....
  • + 1
 didn't know both Lemoine and Diego Caverzasi got sixth place.
  • + 1
 Since when did messere rides for rose bikes?
  • + 1
 How many time has semenuk done victory laps? Seems often.
  • + 16
 Probably every morning, afternoon and evening in his backyard.
  • + 1
 he is a living victory
  • + 0
 These dudes are my hero's I will one day call them my competitors and ride with them till Valhalla!
  • + 1
 anybody knows why semenuk put tap over the trek logo on his bike?
  • + 1
 it's not tape, it's the paintjob. You can still read "trek", just the colours are hard to see it. www.pinkbike.com/photo/15057998
  • - 2
 Joyride makes for Joywatch

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