Social Round Up: First Hits at DarkFest

May 18, 2021
by Alicia Leggett  
Darkfest 2021 ep 4
The riders have arrived. DarkFest is ON!

DarkFest 2021 is now underway, with the build period coming to a close and the riders now at the venue and ready to throw down. DarkFest has been in the news lately after a separation from the rest of the Fest series, reportedly because of Sam Reynold's media coverage style and rider invitation choices. Thus, the South African event will take place as Sam's own standalone operation. Here's a collection of social media updates from the participants.

Rider list: Sam Reynolds, Clemens Kaudela, Ike Klaassen, Theo Erlangsen, Adolf Silva, Bienvenido Aguado, Sergio Layos, Kade Edwards, Kaos Seagrave, Sam Hodgson, William Robert, Vincent Tupin, Tom Isted, and Szymon Godziek.

Sam Reynolds has been hard at work planning, building, and now sending these jumps.

Everyone is ready for takeoff.

Kade Edwards... Wow.

If folks are mad about the Youtube coverage, just wait 'til they see the shoes.

Szymon Godziek is looking plenty comfortable on the course.

Clemens Kaudela getting some first hits on one of the big step-ups.

Theo Erlangsen hanging it out there.

...and continuing to impress.

Sam Hodgson looking right at home.

And the video.

Ike Klassen oozes style.

Adolf Silva going huge.

Bienvenido Aguado has a few tricks up his sleeve.

Kaos Seagrave's whips.

DarkFest doesn't stop when the sun sets.

If you can stand to look away from the riders, the scenery isn't bad either.

POV flip from Tom Isted.

Get ready for lots of party trains in the near future.

Author Info:
alicialeggett avatar

Member since Jun 19, 2015
729 articles

  • 214 6
 Uh oh, Fest Series is going to blacklist Pinkbike now. Too much media coverage.
  • 22 93
flag lkubica (May 18, 2021 at 11:33) (Below Threshold)
 There is no such word as "blacklist" anymore, mate Wink
  • 21 45
flag Peally (May 18, 2021 at 11:59) (Below Threshold)
 @lkubica: I'm whitelisting his comment on the condition that he doesn't work for woke Google.
  • 17 1
 I fat fingered the dislike button and I can't undo it. That one dislike should be a like, sorry mate!
  • 27 78
flag kcy4130 (May 18, 2021 at 12:21) (Below Threshold)
 I think fest series kinda had a point. This post has how many clips? I think it's a cool event, but when the there's only a few clips really worth watching buried in dozens not worth watching... I just skip them all. Same thing with 9 knights or whatever it's called. All the quantity, very little quality. I'd rather have a few edits with just the really good stuff, rather than 20 blurry clips poorly filmed on a smartphone. Just my 2 cents.
  • 40 1
 @kcy4130: totally disagree with you there. I love the smartphone videos. Gives me a better sense of scale and makes it all feel a lot more real, as opposed to polished videos that are a lot harder to relate to and make everything look way smoother/easier/smaller than it really is.

And im sure there will be a highlights video you can watch after the event, like there always is after the fest events, so what exactly are you complaining about?
  • 15 1
 @kcy4130: You can have both. All the insta/dad cam content is just a teaser for the final highlight edit. I don't go back and watch all the insta clips, but I'll throw on the FEST highlight playlist on repeat in the garage while I'm working on the bikes. One compliments the other.
  • 1 0
 Can someone enlighten me about all these references to too much media coverage and getting blacklisted? I must have missed something.
  • 3 0
 Too much expo$$$ure.
  • 1 3
 @chriskneeland: That's a good point. I wonder if the real issue fest had with Sam was money related. Sam puts great footage of all the riders on his youtube, views generate revenue for Sam. If all the revenue generated stays in Sam's pocket, I could see that causing some resentment. Now Sam is putting in work to get/edit footage and he should make money of course, but if he's making all the money, and the other rider's are only getting "exposure" for doing huge moves and taking risks... Idk if that's the situation, it's just that fest's explanation doesn't seem to add up.
  • 5 1
 @kcy4130: But there's nothing stopping the other hosts from doing the same thing. Or, if revenue sharing is the issue, at least communicating it up front if that's what Fest's collective goal is. And events like Darkfest are the only thing keeping the series alive at this point, ensuring future revenue opportunities for other hosts and riders. To me, this press release just put the nail in the coffin.
  • 2 2
 @chriskneeland: I mean if revenue sharing was the issue, I'm sure they would have discussed it, but perhaps not put it in the press release to avoid a public shit show. Or maybe it's just some crusty freeriders who don't like having a camera in their face every second? I know I'd hate that.
  • 6 0
 @mi-bike: Thanks for the link!
Having read both statements, I'm kinda proud of Sam.
  • 1 0
 @PatMAE: always wondered why it's a thing that you cannot undo your likes/dislikes when you fatfinger them
  • 103 1
 Gosh all this media coverage sure is a bummer. Harming the art of riding.
  • 25 1
 I really miss the personalities in these Insta clips.
  • 33 1
 like how am I supposed to show the realness of riding to the future generations with all this gosh darn coverage? This really sucks, I was preparing my kids to be visited by the Angel of Stoke on their 12th birthday as is the traditional rites and sacraments of freeride but now they're going to find this content and be tainted. They might even end up eventually going to a bike park and riding amongst people who didn't do their time carving lines onto the sacred slopes of Bralorne. I am sick, just sick - guess it's time to get my vasectomy reversed and raise the next ones as feral rippers so they can remain pure and clean from this scourge of clicky likely content.
  • 59 1
 Now imagine if instead of hating, FEST was propping up the homies, reposting and linking to all the content that Darkfest and the riders are putting out right now. What a missed opportunity.
  • 17 2
 I don't think that they are interested in all of the reposting and cross-linking though, isn't that one of the things they were trying to communicate? I do think the whole beef is ridiculous and that press release was petty, but I don't understand all these people saying "Darkfest is the only fest I know about". That's half the point right? That the Fest guys don't care if you like their series, or whether there is content available or not.

That's also why I didn't understand the public press release. Just tell Sam privately that you want it to just be his own event now and you're going to go do your own thing in the woods with no one watching. Why tell everyone about it?
  • 17 4
 @thepwnstar39: Okay dude, but they WHY HAVE THE FEST SERIES AT ALL? They have a website, YT channel, sponsors, blah blah blah. If they don't want anyone to know their name then why have a name at all. Call themselves the Fest Club and make membership similar to frat. Time for them to just dissapear because they basically have anyways.

Also Vink is a rampage judge which I find super funny. So much art and realness protected by robbing Norbs.
  • 6 1
 @johncee: and don't forget about Fairclough
  • 11 1
 @johncee: Fest seems to be in a weird spot where they want to just be a club with nobody watching but flying around the world and putting on events is crazy expensive so they have to give something to the sponsors as that's the only way to make money as a freeride athlete, there is no prize money. They almost seem to resent the way they have chosen to make their living. Would they be better off getting normal jobs and riding in their own time at this point?
  • 5 1
 @Patrick9-32: welp, if you were a sponsor would you continue paying these guys? They'll be working normal jobs soon. Sponsors will go to the people who are willing to put in the work that they pay them for.
  • 48 1
 This is the first time I'm actually following such an event closely. How come? Why, thanks to Sam Reynolds' Youtube channel!
Really enjoyable so far! Also, thanks for the roundup PB.

One thing I'd love to get some info on is the speeds with which the riders approach sections like that giant step-up. Looks absolutely eye-watering.
  • 4 0
 Hella Fast. The run in to that step up looks like it would leave the tires smoking.
  • 37 0
 This event would be so much cooler if there was absolutely no media coverage of it. Way too main stream #sellouts
  • 24 0
 Brendog tho Frown
  • 14 0
 Holy crap, Sergio Layos - THAT Sergio Layos, BMX style legend, rides big bikes now? Looking forward to this! Also glad to see Kade there, kid kills on it on everything
  • 4 0
 Can't wait to see what Sir Layos does on a big bike. Truly one of the most stylish riders ever
  • 2 0
 Fantastic to see. After so long locked down and so many events cancelled it is amazing to see such an event go ahead and then to see talent coming in from BMX just makes it even more exciting. Good times ahead.
  • 17 2
 Sam is better off without Fest I guess
  • 2 22
flag emptybe-er (May 18, 2021 at 23:56) (Below Threshold)
 What was Pure Darkness before it was Darkfest? Crap. Must feel gross to be whoring out someone else’s line as if it were your own. Nice shoes though, the christmas spirit is strong.
  • 10 1
 @emptybe-er: son it sounds like you just have a grudge
  • 11 2
 I hope everyone is safe during this! Sam, thank you.
  • 12 4
 Yeah far too much coverage for me. Shame on Sam
  • 5 0
 I like the fest crew but it’s cool to see more dudes that can send too. Need more moon booter cliques out there in the world then they can all do it their own way. This is freeride and we all need more freeride.!
  • 7 0
 if only there was less media coverage.. my brain can't take so much awesomeness..
  • 8 2
 "view post on Instagram" Why can't I just view it in the article?

Let me know if I'm missing something.
  • 6 1
 Try reloading the page. Sometimes the Pinkbike system is finicky and just doesn't load something when it doesn't feel like it, as far as I can understand. All of them are embedded so they should play fine on here as long as the page doesn't hit a glitch while loading.
  • 5 0
 Yeah Instagram posts don't load for me on PB either.
  • 6 0
 I can see them, but Instagram is also cracking down on non users accessing Instagram content.
  • 4 0
 @ratedgg13: same cuz insta is blocked on school laptops........................even though thats where the lunch menus are
  • 1 0
 Try a different browser. Works on Chrome for me but not Firefox...
  • 3 0
 I can watch it once and then it says to view again on Instagram. I'm running Chrome.
  • 4 0
 @alicialeggett: Lately it feels like if you don't have insta you don't get articles. Every single embedded post is blank and links me to IG homepage where I'm told I need an account to view.
  • 17 0
 @ratedgg13: yeah instagram is the fest series of social media
  • 2 0
 My browser (firefox) wont load any facebook/insta content embedded - it's deliberate because I installed 'Facebook Container' so that they can't track the rest of my browsing. Maybe you've installed it too.
  • 1 0
 When using firefox it will disable activity trackers by default. They are needed for the embedded instagram content. You can disable that at the very left of the address bar.
  • 1 0
 Doesn't work on Firefox and does work on Safari.
  • 4 0
 "DarkFest has been in the news lately after a separation from the rest of the Fest series, reportedly because of Sam Reynold's media coverage style and rider invitation choices" What rider invitation choices???
  • 4 0
 Anyone know why it is called DarkFest? Is it just the time of year that it runs?
  • 4 0
 it used to be called Pure Darkness before fest series, not sure on the dark reference though, now i'm curious.
  • 4 0
 My guess is it has to do with being in Africa and the nickname "The Dark Continent". It could also be for Sam Reynolds infatuation with Dark Chocolate confectionaries.
  • 3 0
 I think Pure Darkness came from where the OG site was....
  • 1 0
 @browntown40: yeah. Icky, and if not: icky that they’re sticking with it.

I half-hoped this was the the reason the fest guys kicked him out of their treehouse, but then I remembered they’re knuckleheads
  • 5 3
 Looks rad. Sorry you're missing out Niko and co. When you cut off your nose to spite your face ....Every time the Festers put out an edit or insta you're going to get ragged from now on. Sorry.
  • 5 1
 What happened to Brendog?
  • 15 1
 He split his foreskin in a freak accident and couldn't make the event.
  • 1 1
 @murfio: holy split is that true?
  • 7 0
 @murfio: his foreskin, AKA Ben Deaken
  • 6 0
 @Trudeez: 5skin now.
  • 4 1
 @murfio: Were Ebikes involved?
  • 1 2
 Hanging around with my mates one night
We got in a little fight
Geezer comes with a knife in his fist
I got cut along with the rest said

"A.C.A.B." 4-Skins, 1982
  • 3 2
 Jeez, when did Bienve become such a machine? Looks wider than tall in some shots. Probably won’t need a chest protector with that upper body.
  • 2 1
 I swear ive watched the darkfest 2020 video a million times. that video gave me my drive to ride and still inspires me to rip it up.
  • 1 1
 Round off the side edges of that arrow and suddenly you'll have Tosh.0 making that jump go viral. "Now let's see how many dick jokes we can make in 30 seconds in this weeks countdown...."
  • 1 0
 Not enough media coverage. They should only invite people with more than 500k followers on YT.
  • 1 0
 Can’t wait for GoPro highlights
  • 1 1
 Holy crap Isted's Fury is a monster. I had no idea that bike was that beefy and over built. Dang!
  • 1 0
 First insta edit was fire
  • 2 1
 Where is Johny Salido???
  • 1 2
 And vincent turpin?
  • 2 4
 Someone needs to spell check
  • 1 1
 Crazy they did this at the same time as fyre freeride.
  • 1 0
  • 2 4
 I now see why Fest series dropped this event- the music selection is horrifying
  • 1 3
 why dont i see nico vink?
  • 1 4
 European riders only? Now i see.
  • 7 1
 Theo Erlangsen and Ike Klaasen are from South Africa. But yeah, no American, Oceanian or Asian riders. Though I'm sure covid travel restrictions plays a part, too.
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