9 QUESTIONS WITH MCGAZZA
Kelly took some time to talk with us about joining YT this year, his second place run in 2013, and overcoming his big crash in practice last year. With the best head of hair in the business and a smile as big as he is tall, Kelly is simply the friendliest giant at Rampage.
You are by my estimation, the nicest and the tallest athlete at Rampage, how are you so nice? Does the world just look better from up there?
Haha, it's not a bad view from where I am standing for sure. I travel the world and ride bikes, things could be worse! Actually me and Martin Soderstrom are pretty much the exact same height, but he's not riding Rampage so that makes me the tallest fella out there! The first time I met you was at Rampage in 2013, you had the best looking, but also the smallest dig crew. Last year you had more helping hands, did you find that there was an advantage to having more help?
Yes, in 2013 I had my girl, Sammy, on the end of a shovel - she was great! Last year I had an awesome crew of diggers too, I think last year everyone needed a big crew as we were starting from scratch at a new location and there was a hell of a lot of digging to be done. So in short my dig crews have always been awesome! In 2013 you came in second with a run that was so inspired that it was easily the most publicized through media and social media post event, do you feel like you should have won that year?
No I don't feel like I should have won. I had a rad time ripping the course that year and to get second was an awesome feeling and getting the People's Choice was the icing on the cake. Your backflip over the canyon in 2013 inspired a photo by Paris Gore showing the actual goosebumps it gave the media. How do you get your head around throwing down a trick like that for the first time with the world watching?
I'm pretty stoked my riding could have that effect on people. It's just like any of the big comps we ride in - everyone is watching so you just go for it! Last year you were pushing the limits again and had a pretty big crash in practice, how did that effect your psyche for the rest of the competition?
I had a super bad crash in practice last year, it knocked me around both mentally and physically. I had to have a bunch of massage and physio (in two days) to get myself feeling like I could ride again. Then I had to go back to the Canyon Gap and get my mind around hitting it again. I went back on the morning before finals and owned the jump. It felt good to get through those barriers and I ended up top twelve in the comp which pre-qualified me for this year's final. I wasn't as stoked with my result last year but considering the circumstances I think I did okay! With the location staying the same this year do you already have an idea of the line you want to build?
Umm yes and maybe no. I liked my line last year and feel I didn't really smash it like I wanted to. At the same time there is some cool new stuff on the course and it's rad to change it up. What is it about Rampage that keeps you coming back?
I think the location and the straight up epic-ness of the comp is what keeps me coming back, it's really cool to look around when you are up there digging or riding and appreciate where you are. I feel pretty lucky to get invited to the event and I'm looking forward to this year's shredding! This is your first season on YT Bikes, how did that transition come about?
The guys from YT got in touch with me end of last year and I signed with them this year, it's been so rad! The bikes are the nicest I have ever ridden and I like how YT as a company rolls in general. We have an epic team and great bikes to go with it so I couldn't be happier! Does having a YT team at events like Rampage (yourself, Cam Zink, and Andreu Lacondeguy) offer more support in these situations or are events like Rampage still very much individual endeavours?
It's rad to have the YT crew around for sure, YT are backing Rampage pretty hard this year which is awesome! I'm proud to be riding for a company that puts back into the sport and events like Rampage as well as makes epic bikes! Cheers boys!
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