Red Bull Formation 2021
is underway—the women's freeride event is taking place this week (May 24 to June 1) on the 2015 Red Bull Rampage course.
It's now or never: See Samantha Soriano put all the pieces of the freeride puzzle together—gnar lines and technical tricks over burly terrain—in episode #3
(of 3) of the Road to Formation series (above).
Keep reading to check in with the Formation Freshman and learn what's happening in Virgin, Utah, after the first two official dig days... On winning the 2018 U.S. National Championship at 18 years old—and now at 20, pursuing freeride:
As I moved up in the Elite category, racing felt like a job. I felt as if I wasn’t doing it for the right reasons because there was something that never satisfied me with racing. In 2019, I rode with Veronique Sandler at Crankworx, and after a thorough night of Instagram stalking, I saw that a woman was able to make a career out of freeride, which sparked the flame. With all the races being canceled from COVID this past year, I thought what better time to try the freeride life and see how it goes… and here we are. Simply put, all I really want to do is ride my bike. On her line selection, digging and course build at Red Bull Formation 2021:
Hannah [Bergemann], Casey [Brown] and I are going in on a line together. Currently, we're about 75% complete after the first two days of digging. I brought Dillon Lemarr as my designated digger and he has a lot of experience in the desert—building at Rampage for Kyle Strait and DJ Brandt. [Dillon] has been a mentor in life, as well as riding, and has helped me with a lot of progression—he is a great asset to have on the mountain. On surprises so far at Red Bull Formation 2021:
I'm surprised at all the features all the women are building in to their lines—there are definitely going to be some big hits out there. I'm hoping everyone is able to put together a solid run.
On the remaining digging needed to complete her line at Red Bull Formation 2021: SAMANTHA SORIANO
2021 Canyon Sender 6, SmallFork:
Marzocchi Bomber 58Shock:
Marzocchi Bomber CRCrank:
Truvativ Descendant DH, 34TCassette:
SRAM PG-720 DH 7-speed, 11-25T Pedals:
Industry Nine, 27.5" front/rearTires:
Continental Der Baron 2.4"Handlebar:
Deity Speedway 35mmStem:
Deity Intake DMGrips:
There are two dig days left—May 26 and 27 before the mandatory rest day on May 28. We have three main features still to "touch up" since most of the line is there [from 2015 Rampage]. But retouching can be almost harder than building from scratch because so many layers of sediment have built up and created decay—hopefully we can knock it all out on Wednesday (May 26), which will leave Thursday (May 27) to be a really solid "water day" to firm everything up and make it ready to ride.On weather forecast for the three ride days (May 29-31—w/June 1 as an optional weather day) of the event:
The wind has been substantial all week and the forecast calls for more wind on the horizon. On expectations at Red Bull Formation 2021:
We are able to ride the bottom portion of the mountain on the last dig day (May 27). In our line, there are really only two features on that portion of the mountain, but it would be good to get things started before the official ride days. Honestly, I hope to do a few complete runs before the end of the weekend—and hope I am able to ride to the best of my ability during each ride down the line.
Produced by: Taylor Sage
Photos by: Peter Jamison, Taylor Sage, Alexa Christensen
With support from: Canyon USA
Featuring: Samantha Soriano@Canyon-PureCycling