FALLING OUT OF THE SKY
We feel sorry for the people who watched the qualifiers but didn’t stick around for Super Finals practice. Sure, qualification was unreal. It’s nicely scheduled, announced by the always hilarious Brad Ewen, you know who’s going next and where they’re going. And it’s judged, so it’s important. Really, it’s about as spectator "rad" as a sporting event can get.
But in all truth, the real riding went down this afternoon. For the 24 riders who will be competing on Sunday, now was the time to hit the moves everyone had been thinking about. Diggers were finishing upper mountain lines, or crafting in new, last minute ones. And of course, the Oakley Sender beckoned, and the trick jumps needed to get dialed.
Some of the loudest cheers of the day came from those who stayed. Tyler McCaul hit one of his massive drops, Aggy practiced the step down transfer Gee Atherton made famous in 2010, while Zink and Strait got after it by sending the Sender from the top. These are obviously huge airs, some of the biggest in the history of the sport. Ridiculously, there’s talk of tricking them. Zink had organizers add a kicker to the top of what must be a close to 100-foot air. You know what he’s thinking, and it’s not a number.
So, as the sun set on the last evening of Rampage, the nerves stayed tested and the picks kept swinging. We’re a long way from done. Far from it. Tomorrow will be insane.
By Mitchell Scott
|I don't understand, I went way faster the second time, and I still came short - Gully|
|I kinda decided I was scared of the big drop and didn't have too many other options so I came back to this line I saw last year with a better build crew. The drop is about the same as the Oakley, but it's dirt to dirt which I like a lot. I hope it gets the same wow-factor cos the other one looks pretty cool. My dig crew has done way more than I could have ever asked for so it's all up to me now. I'll get her done this evening and it should just be a blast tomorrow once I have that out of the way. I could never say if what I'm gonna do is gonna be enough, but I'm gonna try to do what I think is cool and not hold back an ounce and see where I end up - TMac|
|I plan to hit it right off the new kicker, because if I ride it off the flat I'll still have to guinea pig it again so I might as well just hit it like it will be. It should fly better, coming off that will boot you up nice and be all good over the gap - Cam Zink|
|I told Zink go faster than you think, it's kind of like a cartoon... You're coming out fast, you see that landing coming, you feel good and all of sudden lose your forward momentum then just start dropping! A bit like the Wile E Coyote! Kyle Strait|
|Everything's kinda last minute cos you wanna do it and get it done, but here we are again the night before finals and I still haven't tee-d it up. It was the same way in 2010, it was windy and all these things making me say I'll hit it tomorrow. I hit the icon sender twice the morning of that year and it worked out. So I just need to hit it at least once... I would sleep a lot better tonight if I hit it, but I'm exhausted from being on my feet all day, my legs are tired and I'm hungry as hell - Cam Zink|
|It super tough being on the sidelines, not being able to defend the title and I just want to ride. Lot of new lines been built and it's just looking rad out there. Just wish I was riding with the boys, but stoked to be here to support them and hang out. The digging's been insane. T-Macs line is amazing, those guys killed it finding natural features of the mountain and working them out with the shovels. Pretty rad to see the biggest air over there not having any wood and you know there's a lot of cool other stuff going on elsewhere. Who I am rooting for? My boy Aggy of course! Kurt Sorge |