Video: In Search of Freeride Spirit in 'Tur De Gnar'

Nov 13, 2023 at 22:04
by Petr Dochees  

The idea first came during the summer, when I was bored to hell because of an injury. I kept thinking it would be cool to create a freeride happening that would be a bit different from usual race or a contest. In the Czech Republic, a place that I am lucky to call home, we get plenty of exciting public events, but none of them really represent what I truly like about riding bikes... nature, group of buddies, a couple of worthy features to ride, and vibes for miles. I cannot go further without mentioning the inspiration that I got from Yoann Barelli’s original „Tour de Gnar“, thanks Yoann! So I used the creativity of our language and I named the event “Tur Jede Gnar” which could be translated to “cow rides gnar”. We wanted to have a bit more relaxed schedule, plus Czech is not home to so many massive features and diverse terrain. So that started to shape the program for a proper day out with your mates, who ride some challenging stuff, but do not need to be stressing for a specific moment to have a chance to send. I knew I wanted to invite seasoned freeriders, who know what it takes to measure themselves and will not go blindly beyond their comfort zones.

The locations were already prepped, because I wanted to shoot some pictures on them since spring (shout out to the diggers that helped me build, especially Jirka, Gargamel and Baba). I went for a beer with my cinematographer friend, who got stoked on filming the whole thing as well and got together a group of filmers and drone operators. Call a couple photographers on top of that and you got yourself a recipe for a day to be remembered.

[PCAPTION] Photo: @Kraliqe [/PCAPTION]

In the end it took a month of prep and a sleepless night of pouring rain on the eve before the event and we were set to go. It's Saturday morning and 32 shredders meet in a parking lot, all get stickers and t-shirt to make it official and we set off to the first riding spot.

[PCAPTION] Riders came from all the corners of our country. Boys get the stickers. Photo: @Kraliqe [/PCAPTION]

It's a freeride zone, ripe for carving turns in steep gravely forest and a decent size road gap. Everyone is loving the riding already and it's nice and chill to get you going in the morning. After the introduction of a lip at the beginning, everyone starts to send it faster and that also brings the first casualty (get well soon Martin). After about an hour of shredding and hiking back to the top, everyone moves to the road gap sector.

[PCAPTION] Earning the turns. Rada Kulhavy and Vita push their rigs to the start of the zone 1. Photo: @marsal.adam [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Dochees opens the zone. Photo: @marsal.adam [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Martin Krejci maintains the speed in train. Photo: @marsal.adam [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Maaca carves. Photo: @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Martin Ptacnik goes down hard. Photo: @marsal.adam [/PCAPTION]

It's a stepdown with a proper lip to take off from and measures about 10m out and 4m down to get you comfortably to the landing. The run in is a techy turn that is also a bit moist after the nights rain, but that doesn’t prevent Studnopes from being the first one to send. The rest of the group gets easily inspired and after some more maintenance on the turn that leads into it, the session gets nice and wild. Whips, tabels, t-bogs, couple ballsy sui-s from Matous and Moudras, everyone is pumped on going again and again. Until Seb puts the session on hold by coming way too short and hitting the deck hard. Luckily, he is also a tough fella so he will ride again soon, but both bones and his seatstays need some time to recover.

[PCAPTION] Studnopes opens the gap, he brought loads of style in afterwards. Photo: @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Seb is too short and goes down pretty hard. Photo: @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] David Cila extends the t-bog. Photo: @marsal.adam [/PCAPTION]

After a quick snack, we move camp to „Matějova plotna“, a slab that was opened a couple years ago but was fine tuned for more exciting riding on this occasion. It got its name to remember the birthday of Bambus’s son who was born the day before the slab was opened. It’s a sequence of a 2m rock slab, that leads into a narrow ledge you can’t stop on and straight into another 8ms of steep rock face. The runout itself is not way easy. You have two options, one offers a series of compressions and the other one a cheeky drop hard to setup for at the speed you are coming at off the slab. And if that’s not enough fun for the most skilled riders we also built a lip line so you can pop into the lower slab. It didn’t last long till Matej opened the A-line whilst still choosing the sketchier runout of the too so mad props to him. All of a sudden everyone seems to be gapping or endo-ing into the lower slab and things go a bit crazy. The A-line got a few more creative run-ins but unfortunately, also took its toll on Domink’s bike that got way too compressed on the run out. Gargamel also went down on the runout, but luckily without any serious injuries except for a broken phone. David then finds a super straight and by far the sketchiest entry into the A-line, everyone holds their breath but he keeps it together and easily claims the throne on the slab. What a session again! We pack tools, broken bikes and all the fellas and move to the third and final location of the day.
[PCAPTION] The Matej's slab in all its glory. @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] The grip is what you wish here. @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Dominik Puffer doesn't hesitate and pop into the slab. @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Matous Mlejnek sends the gap on A-line. @marsal.adam [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Moudras and A-line gap from different perspective @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Dochees front wheel balance into the slab. @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Pushing is what does take you up and Baba knows that. @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]

Majority of the riders take advantage of the shuttle to get to the third spot. Bunch of core enduro riders use the self powered shuttle to get there. The third and last spot is a gully, deep in the loamy section of woods nearby. The camera crew and photographers are all prepped and await the arrival of the shredders. The Kosnar’s gully is way too much fun but once again a horrid hike. We can see the boys are loving it but fatigue sets in and also takes the casualty of Vita, who walks away unscathed in the end. The hip at the bottom of the gully gets its maiden sends and there is loam flying all over the place as the boys get trains on trains of laps in.

[PCAPTION] Pushing the gully up was no bueno. What do you think, Frenk? @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Tree bong in the making by Honza Sramek, closely followed by Jumbo . @marsal.adam [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Martin Krejci brings all his steeze into the gully. @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Jakub Riha and his sharp focus on the next turn. @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Dzi sets the table. @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]

We call it a day when the sun starts to set, the place gets dark and the boys get tired.

[PCAPTION] It was a big day. But nothing beats those smiles! @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] @the_real_benben on the way to the base. @kraliqe [/PCAPTION]

Time to move to the base at Potepli where beer and beef await. All the riders discuss over a brew who gets the honors of the day and this is how it all pans out...
What a day! Big thanks to all the riders who turned up and made this day an unforgetable experience.

[PCAPTION] Wooden trophies and the one and only. Photo: @slamdom [/PCAPTION]

Awards went to:
Lord of the Gnar: Studnopes
Steeze Master: Moudras
Send to the Gnar: David Cila
The sketchiest line: Honza Sramek
Crash of the day: Seb Hluze
Spirit award: Baba
Honorable mentions: Matous Mlejnek, Dominik Puffer, Dzi

[PCAPTION] The ceremony. Photo @slamdom [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] The one, Studnopes! @slamdom [/PCAPTION]
[PCAPTION] Congrats boyz! Photo @slamdom [/PCAPTION]

All the knights:

Cila David
Cila Jiri
Dominik Puffer
Jakub Riha
Matej Visnovsky
Honza Sramek
Paja Tousek
Filip Drahokoupil
Seb Hluze
Radek Rada Kulhavy
Matous Mlejnek
Martin Ptacnik
Martin Krejci
Marek Petelik

Respect and props to the boys behind camera lens, risking it all to get the shots.
Dominik Slambora
Honza Kratochvil
Tomas Kral
Adam Marsal
Ondra Havlik
David Spacek

To all the sponsors who were not afraid to support this happening.
Krab Cycles
Netopyr Bike
Freeride Pyco

Apparently, freeride ain't dead yet, so see you next year!

Check out more of still images in galeries:

Author Info:
dochees avatar

Member since Sep 27, 2010
1 articles

  • 21 0
 This is SO AWESOME !!!! Congrats everyone, and I want an invite for next year's edition Smile !!!! LET'S GOOOOOOO
  • 9 0
 Those photos are epic!
  • 2 0
 Yoo sick I love seeing this! Super inspiring and humble rider putting on a show full of names I used to look up to when I discovered mountain biking and thanks to y'all I ended up in BC Big Grin Keep sending it! And pop by for a shred again!
  • 3 0
 As long as you have some good slopes and good fellows to make it happen, fun is at the rendez-vous. Great stuff guys, it was great to watch. Cheers!!!!!
  • 5 0
 Riding like this should automatically qualify you for Canadian citizenship
  • 3 0
 lot of us actualy was in Canada, big percentage of invited crew, it opened our eyes and show us that steepness can be actually 3 times more and still ridable! and now we are littlebit depressed about it and trying to find those gnarly spots with canadian steep feel Smile
  • 5 0
 Yoann must be proud of you! Great event and vid and photos. Thanks!
  • 2 0
 This is the second non-BC "tour de gnar" I have seen this week....there is one in Helsinki on YouTube
  • 3 0
 Looks like a whole lot of fun! Great pictures.
  • 1 0
 Great content. Dominik Puffer's video with the commencal Meta ht Is one of the best Mountainbike-videos ever and made me a commencal fanboy (4life?).
  • 2 0
 This was awesome, at first I was wondering if it was east coast US with the way the woods looked. Love this kinda vibe.
  • 2 0
 Fantastic! This should have honestly been titled a "must watch". Up there with the best mtb videos I've seen this year.
  • 2 0
 What a cool event. Thanks for sharing.
  • 2 0
 That was excellent. The best kind of group ride.
  • 2 0
 Great concept and execution! Rad times!
  • 2 0
 “Cow rides gnar”

I have never felt so attacked
  • 2 0
 Great stuff, i love it
  • 3 1
  • 2 0
 Joo vole!
  • 1 0
 Ride and feel free - freeride!
  • 1 0
 Nice! looked like a lot of fun.

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