Every year since the Oakley Icon Sender’s 2010 inception into the controlled-chaos that is Red Bull Rampage, it has been one of the largest, most mesmerizing features created by the build crew. Consistently, the Icon Sender has challenged riders, forcing them to year-by-year determine new lines down the mountain while navigating monster drops and pushing their personal performance boundaries, which, in turn, increases the overall wow-factor of the event.2013 Oakley Icon Icon Sender render by Scott Dickson
Taking into consideration the limited space on the cliff-side and a crowd-sourced design inspiration via the Render The Sender contest
, the team of designers at Oakley collaborated with riders and builders to come up with a feature they collectively agreed would produce the most thrilling spectacle possible. Countless designs were sketched and considered, altered and canned, before the team came to a consensus on what will be on display on the day of reckoning – a design that pushes the ever-evolving envelope that has come to be expected of the Oakley Icon Sender.
The 2013 Icon Sender is a mix of bold and technical options, which will offer riders who choose to incorporate it into their lines a way to showcase their strong points in a critical part of the course. This years’ Icon Sender includes five takeoffs (three of which are new) with three landings (one new). Without going into detail, understand that there are just varying degrees of heart-stopping possibilities on offer, allowing each rider to choose which best suits his abilities and intestinal fortitude.
As a crucial navigational point on the course, the Icon Sender presents the H5 build crew, led by Jeremy Witek, with its greatest construction challenge – one which required equal parts strategy and execution. With additional necessary construction compared with prior years, the build crew had its work cut out for itself. Uprights had to be embedded in the cliff side, a new landing required an exacting assessment of trajectory and slope, and of course there’s the always-daunting challenge of maneuvering a massive piece of machinery up a considerable slope on soft soil.
Rock-retaining walls were hand-stacked and countless wheelbarrow loads of dirt dumped from the top of the feature in order to fill in the slope. Then it all had to be levelled in order to complete the landing - nothing was easy in the entire process. And yet every year, it happens without complaint. The key is to continue to build the legendary freeride structure in Utah, something that the riders, spectators will enjoy and remember for years to come.
While all of the exciting new launch options are massive and trying, the builders have taken extreme care to make sure the nuts and bolts of the construction of the course are precise. Builders stood at different segments of the features, constantly consulting one another to make sure takeoffs and landings match, and that expected trajectories will carry riders to where they need to be. The amount of collective thought, consideration, and collaboration from riders, designers and builders that has been put into this year’s Icon Sender has created a truly unique focal point of the course that should result in some all-time shredding.oakleyredbull.com/bikeScott Dickson