Posts Tagged ‘freeride’


Virgin in Utah

February 7, 2009

Excuse the rather lurid headline but hey – we got your attention and rightly so cos what you will watch below is truly extreme, truly awe inspiring and truly incredible mountain bike riding.

The best in the land test their skill in yet another Red Bull sponsored extreme event at Virgin in Utah in both freeride and downhill mountain bike riding with some huge drops. We are really impressed by the skill that these guys show – mastery over your environment, a cool nerve and great balance – and watch how in mid air they manouvre the angle of the bike frame so as to land the bike at the right angle to the hill.

Well done guys this is cool – thanks to  pjmitchellontoast for the video


Attention all young European skiers

December 8, 2008

This inspired challenge for skiers aged 12 to 18 years (in 2008) and who live in Europe has been developed and created by ‘The North Face’ and judges young European skiers in both freeride and freestyle.

Freeride will be judged to demonstrate the individual’s technique, control, lines and general abilities.

Freestyle will be examined on the individual’s style, creativity, landing;  difficulty and amplitude will also be rewarded.

There will be 5 qualifying events and the final in 2009 open to four categories:

  • 12-13 year olds
  • 14-15 year olds
  • 16-18 year olds
  • overall girls category

Each qualifying event will examine a maximum of 75 competitors with 60 competitors being selected for the final event in Val Thorens, France. An additional 10 competitors will be invited to Val Thorens at the discretion of the organisers. The top two skiers in the 16-18 year category at Val Thoens will be offered a sponsors contract by The North Face, Dynastar and Lange.

The dates of the qualifying events for the 2009 North Face Challenge are:

  • January 31st – February 1st 2009 – Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
  • February 7th – 8th 2009 – Ruka, Finland
  • February 14th – 15th 2009 – Are, Sweden
  • February 28th – March 1st  2009 – Chamonix, France
  • March 27th – 29th – Val Thorens, France

Registration for the events which are now open can be found on the following website

Below you can watch a video from jpbaralo of the final day of the 2008 event: a great event guys so don’t delay – get registered!


XC, freeride or downhill – what current biking jargon means

October 28, 2008

Here is an explanation for the wiser members of our readership of what the contemporary biking terms are all about and how they are practiced. For this I am indebted to the Independent who recently produced an article called ‘The Complete Guide to Mountain Biking’.

After each of the descriptions of the three fashions of mountain biking: XC, freeride or downhill I have added a brief video of how the art should be practiced.

XC or cross country:  involves pedalling up and down hills and through forests, double-track farm lanes and bridleways – all of which are known as “trails” within the mountain-biking fraternity. XC riding is the equivalent of a nice, long walk, and many trips are possible on an “ordinary” bike.

Thanks to iamfreetofly for the video – as you will see it is not as easy as you might think.

Freeride or freestyle riding: involves cycling over purpose-built jumps and obstacles – often in a setting no larger than a few acres – repetitively testing one’s nerve, skill and cartilage. For those old enough to remember Kick Start with Peter Purves, this is the motor-less version.

Thanks to watanidiot for the video, which does also include some downhill.

Downhill riding: perhaps the most exhilarating version of the sport, in which mountain bikers use gravity to propel themselves through forests, down hillsides and along rock-, root- and obstacle-strewn trails. It sounds dangerous, but it is no more so than skiing or snowboarding, and offers similar thrills: fantastic views and fast action.

Thanks to Bistecot for the video.

So as you can see there is plenty of room for choice in terms of which form of biking you practice. Each form has its own bespoke and specialised bike for when you become an expert. In the meantime a good all round mountain bike should be able to handle most of the obstacles and terrrain that you put in its way.