Photo Report: DarkFEST 2020

Feb 20, 2020 at 6:27
by Eric Palmer  

DarkFEST 2020 was insane! The biggest jumps and an amazing crew of riders from all over the world guarantee greatness and this year was a really special one!






Sam, Nico and Clemens did an amazing job on the build, the 3rd year here has them dialling everything in and CDog got a nice little toy to measure the angles and distances so that they could keep what worked and perfect things where they felt it could be improved. Nothing goes by perfect equations as wind, body position and how you pop can change your trajectory quite seriously, but these guys have been building more and more big jumps and really got their accuracy down.

Superman
Superman

Indy
Indy




Big Air MacDoobs
Big Air MacDoobs!





Indy
Indy

Flat 3 Table
Flat 3 Table

Flip Nac
Flip Nac

Flip Superseat Indy
Flip Superseat Indy

Superseat Indy
Superseat Indy

After some testing, there were 1 or 2 things they wanted to change slightly. The Lip on the hip had slightly sandy dirt that was not compacting well, so they replaced that with more solid clay and the new last feature, the Rocket Launcher #2 got a slight tweak on the lip. It was doable as is, but they were planning on throwing down some big tricks on it and wanted it perfect.

Admiring his art
Admiring his art

Destroying his art
Destroying his art!






Rocket Launcher to the moon
Rocket Launcher to the moon!

HUUUGE Crankflip
HUUUGE Crankflip

T-Bog
T-Bog

Dog Dangle
Dog Dangle

The riders started showing up and jaws were hitting the floor every day. These jumps look massive in photos and video, but you know being here and seeing them in the flesh adds a new dimension to them and they are much bigger than most people think. Lips bigger than vert ramps, but made so perfect that after a few hits the guys were actually feeling quite safe on them, which completely blows my mind when you look at them.

Japan
Japan

Frontie
Frontie

BACKWARDS
BACKWARDS!!!


 LONGLIVEJORDIE
#LONGLIVEJORDIE!!!



As usual, any wind means that the line is super dangerous, but the step up is semi-sheltered, so they could still throw down on that and get comfortable hitting a lip and around 70km/h. When conditions are perfect, then it's go time and the guys make use of it! Up at 6:30 am to water and if it's overcast they can ride straight away, but if not the sun is in their eyes until around 8:30. The mornings are normally the safer bet for sessions, but we were lucky this year and got a few good afternoon sessions too.



Steezus ascending into the clouds
Steezus ascending into the clouds

Super Seat Indy
Super Seat Indy

Spinny mount couldn t handle the whip
Spinny mount couldn't handle the whip






Whipping and Dipping
Whipping and Dipping

It really didn't take long for them to warm up and start sending some tricks and we were treated to some incredible riding. Tonnes of huge whips getting the bikes upside down and backwards, Jaxson doing flat 3's first hit in the morning, Bienve with his frontflip Tsunami and frontie on the last, Clemens with a flip on Rocket Launcher #1 and #2 back to back and a massive extended flip nac on the last. Too many amazing things to mention, but that's why we have the highlights edit for you!

Indian
Indian


Super C
Super C





Flat 3 table
Flat 3 table


All the vibes
All the vibes!

Another highlight was 16yr old Ike, who's farm the jumps are on was finally old enough and big enough to carry speed to hit everything. He is cautious and smart in his approach and asks the guys some questions to make sure he's all good, but everyone knew he was ready and so did he. First one off the list after the step up, which he hit last year, was the 90 footer. The kid has style and not only did it but looked super comfy in the air. Not long after that he was joining the top to bottom trains and taking a hand or foot off in the air too.

Undisputed 90ft whip champ
Undisputed 90ft whip champ!



Japan Air Shark Attack
Japan Air/Shark Attack



Heelclicker
Heelclicker




Some of the biggest treats for me was watching the "Builders Trains" Sam, Nico and Clemens coming down the mountain was one of the most beautiful sights. Huge whips everywhere and a sprinkle of extra steeze from Nico, extended superman's from Sam and CDog being his usual boss self and flipping things that don't make sense.

Builder Train
Builder Train!




Such an amazing year and some all-time sessions on these crazy jumps. Everyone has been bitten and just wants to ride them more!
What will we have in store for DarkFEST 2021? I'm not sure and don't know how you can go any bigger than hitting a massive jump at 70+ km/h, but these guys always find a way to make it more insane and tweak things to make them more comfortable to send even bigger tricks.




Thanks to everyone that makes this event possible! It is really something special and without their support, it wouldn't be possible.
A special thank you to the sponsors, Monster Energy, Kenda, Polygon, Adidas/5.10, Sany and Bobcat. All the boys are way too excited to ride this course more, so sure you'll see us back next year!






23 Comments

  • 36 0
 I have a feeling we're gonna be seeing a lot more of Jaxson Riddle...
  • 13 0
 Kids a freak of nature. Watching him ride in person reminds me a lot of watching a young Shaun White skate or snowboard. They just go bigger. Like it's part of their nature. Any brands that have slept on sponsoring this kid over the last 2 years are fools.
  • 5 0
 And it's so well deserved. That kid has more drive and determination than just about anyone I've met. Hard work really is about to pay off
  • 1 1
 That's kid s got spirit
  • 1 1
 he will win whip off in not to long. they r so steez
  • 8 0
 Superman double seat grab - are you kidding me!? Fully mental!
  • 2 0
 We're given so many pictures of guys sending it that seeing something like a superman can seem normal. Show these pics to someone that doesn't ride and then explain that they are doing this ON PURPOSE. It's absolutely remarkable.
  • 5 1
 When do things get to big? Can't see it getting bigger than this without a motor, mental!
  • 2 0
 Was about to say the same thing. Still I'm sure they're going to prove us wrong in just a year.
  • 1 4
 Ever watch the video of the guy hitting the distance Olympic ski jump on a Downhill bike?
  • 6 1
 Moar HDR filter
  • 4 0
 Got all the POD's for the year
  • 3 0
 Those night shots are so gorgeous!
  • 2 0
 Such a sick event, well done to everyone involved you killed!! Thanks for all of the detailed footage and pics!
  • 2 0
 Art. Such a beautiful back drop for these pictures.
  • 2 0
 Insane images, Thanks PB
  • 2 0
 Thanks!
  • 2 0
 Proper class photos here
  • 1 0
 Is that CJ Celig in the last photo? Random.......
  • 1 0
 She hit the step up, so earned her spot in the riders shot. Wink
  • 1 0
 @ericpalmer: way to go CJ!!
  • 1 2
 I was missing something? Can someone answer.... Pls
  • 3 0
 yes

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