Today was wild at Rampage. Not only was the second half of qualifications a total upset for some – it was a golden ticket for others. Riders arrived to a rain soaked course full of heavy dirt and terrain that was stark contrast to the loose dust and chunder they were negotiating less than 48 hours before.
A handful of riders who never got a chance at a second qualifier and were sitting outside of the top 10 would eventually get inside and bump out some unfortunate souls. The heavy dirt made things interesting, but far more predictable than days prior.
Additionally – all the big dogs started in with the guinea pigging of their big lines and features. Ultimately though – today was all about Aggy. After a huge crash in his first run, he turned it around and pulled out 94.00 and absolutely embarrassed everyone. Aggy is easily top 5 material at Rampage…He just has no off button. Tomorrow will be very telling. Here is today’s story.
Rider’s were greeted with some lines that needed some work. Not as bad as expected, but still – some maintenance was required.
You know your landing is critical when your builder wears rappelling gear and takes shovel handoffs to pack it in. Jeremy Witek keeps Cam Zink as safe as possible at all times.
Nico Vink dabbled with the idea of strapping it up and rallying but his head just wasn’t straight after a bad crash a few days ago. We’re glad he made the right call and sat it out.
Bernard Kerr had a great run but was one of the few guys who just got bumped.
Jeff Herb killed it. He was actually one of the few guys who improved his score.
A blown backflip ruined Yannick Granieri’s chances of a finals run.
We didn’t see Andreu ride much. A couple of days ago he said he wouldn’t really try his whole run til the day of finals. He wasn’t lying, and seemed super focused on getting his lines dialed and buffed out. We eventually caught up with him throwing some massive moves at sunset. What a treat.
Kyle Jameson didn’t qualify, but he’s such a good guy that he helped Aggy buff out his line. The results speak for themselves.
Norbs got his line buffed out and blasted a few drops.
Louis Reboul also locked in a crack at finals.
You don’t wanna mess with Kyle Strait’s dig team. Gangster.
Paul Basagoitia also went from a bad run to a secured position. Well done Bas! You looked good out there.
The wind picked up right before Aggy’s run but he prevailed.
Not only did he prevail – he crushed it!!! 94.00 and took the top spot in qualies for the second year in a row.
The big guns started riding some heavy stuff. Cam was the first down the big line up top – Kyle pictured here looking Ace.
Speaking of Kyle – He looked casual as could be and just flowed down some fun stuff to stay loose.
Cam straight aired his MASSIVE drop. Stomped it twice. So sick – Cam is such a legend.
Rheeder polished things on his line and got super dialed.
Brendog had a lot of digging to do, but it all came together and he blasted his canyon gap a few times with great success. Well done Brendan!
Thomas Genon has barely been seen riding, but looks surprisingly comfortable on a DH bike.
The same can be said for Semenuk – he hasn’t been charging constantly, but rather – just fine tuning each section. A self preservation tactic?
At the end of the night a few guys just sessioned a huge hip in some epic light. What more could a photo nerd ask for?
See you tomorrow Rampage!
Virgin, UT – September 28, 2014 – After two days that saw lightning strikes, inches of rain, flash floods and piles of mud, the qualifiers were completed on Sunday with 10 riders earning their spot in the main event, which has been moved to Monday. The anticipation for the first official competition on the new Red Bull Rampage course did not disappoint, as 23 of the top mountain bikers in the world made use of every inch of the mountain as they tricked their way into the big show.
Graham Agassiz made the most of his chance to ride as the weather cleared, stunning the crowd with his run that included one of the biggest drops in the history of Rampage, estimated at least 76 feet. As soon as he made it to the finish he was surrounded by his peers who had no doubt his run was the best they had seen. The scores from today’s run were a continuation of Friday’s first round of qualifying that saw it’s own jaw-dropping moments including Szymon Godziek’s backflip over the 73’ canyon gap and Brett Rheeder charging down the knife-edge ridges. The second heat was postposed as heavy rain and lightning flashed across the venue. The severe weather continued through Saturday, and finally cleared on Sunday to allow for the athletes to complete every run of the second heat – and riders like Agassiz and Paul Basagoitia certainly were glad for the sunshine. Bas’ second run bumped him into 5th place, joining others such as Brett Rheeder, Tom Van Steenbergen and Jeff Herbertson in spots to move on to tomorrow’s final.
There is no doubt that all the talk will be about Agassiz, who had to wait two days to make up for a wash out on his first run. “It was so much build up, I was stressed because of the weather and praying for sun. I knew this was my once chance to make it into the finals and I just had to make it happen.” His huge score of 94.0 will be hard for to top tomorrow but he says he has some plans in store, so he will be one fans won’t want to miss in the Final. Fellow rider and announcer (out due to injury) Tyler McCaul agrees, “He did not hold back at all. I’ve always said it’s just a matter of time before he wins something like this and I think this is his year.”
CASE OF THE MONDAYS JUST GOT SWEETER
Today’s action was just a preview for Monday, where 20 riders will launch out of the start gate for the main event, delayed 24 hours from the storms. Expect to see riders fly across huge step-downs and mega booters in addition to steep vertical lines down the exposed terrain. The riders from today will join the likes of former Rampage champions such as Kyle Strait, Brandon Semenuk and Cam Zink.
Thanks to the rain, your workday just got a lot more entertaining. On Monday, join fans around the world to tune in as Red Bull Rampage is being webcast live, beginning at 1pm MT (12pm PT/3pm ET) via Red Bull TV at redbull.com/rampage. The enhanced webcast will feature live voting during each run, with a prize being awarded to the Army National Guard People’s Choice. Get involved in the action via live chat with fans around the world, and watch your favorite moments over and over with almost instant online replays for each run. We’re sure your boss won’t mind.
In addition to the online experience, fans can tune in to NBC on December 27th at 4pm EST to broadcast of Red Bull Rampage presented by GoPro, and supported by Dodge Dart, Polaris RZR, Army National Guard and Utah Sports Commission. The show airs as part of the Red Bull Signature Series, the most progressive action sports property in the world, featuring some of Red Bull’s top events including Crashed Ice, Ultra Natural, Wake Open, Dreamline and Joyride. For more information, please visit www.redbullsignatureseries.com.
QUALIFICATION RESULTS – TOP 10 MOVE ON TO FINAL
1. Graham Agassiz CAN – 94.00
2. Brett Rheeder CAN – 86.50
3. Tom Van Steenbergen CAN – 83.75
4. Jeff Herbertson USA – 82.50
5. Paul Basagoitia USA – 82.00
6. Szymon Godziek POL – 80.50
7. Kyle Norbraten CAN – 80.25
8. Louis Reboul FRA -78.25
9. Carson Storch USA – 77. 25
10. Geoff Gulevich CAN – 77.00
11. Mitch Chubey CAN 76.50
12. Bernard Kerr GBR – 75.75
13. Ryan Howard USA – 72.50
14. James Doerfling CAN – 72.25
15. Makken Haugen NOR – 69.75
16. Mitch Ropelato USA – 69.00
17. Kyle Jameson USA – 63.00
18. Wil White USA – 58.50
19. Mike Hopkins CAN – 57.75
20. Yannick Granieri FRA – 55.00
21. Nicholi Rogatkin USA – 41.25
22. Robbie Bourdon CAN – 33.50
23. Chris Van Dine USA – 31.75
PRE QUALIFIED TO FINALS
Andreu Lacondeguy ESP
Brandon Semenuk CAN
Brendan Fairclough GBR
Cameron Zink USA
Kelly McGarry NZL
Kyle Strait USA
Mike Montgomery USA
Ramon Hunziker SUI
Pierre Edouard Ferry FRA
Thomas Genon BEL
In the finals, each rider will get two shots at the course and their best run score counts. Competitors will be judged on style, amplitude, fluidity, and difficulty of line. In addition, the athlete who throws down the most amazing trick during the finals will also be presented with a Red Bull Rampage Best Trick award by the Utah Sports Commission.