furthur
Beggars Would Ride

Furthur

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There is enough of a history of misuse and contention about the words “further” and “farther” that most dictionaries devote at least a paragraph or two in the hopes of keeping the linguistic trains on the grammatical tracks. F’rinstance, Britannica.com has this to say:

There is a long history of disagreement about how these two words should be used, among native speakers of English as well as learners. The question is complicated by the fact that both further and farther are sometimes used as adjectives and sometimes used as adverbs, and the part of speech helps determine their use. If you want to be sure not to make a mistake, the simplest rules to follow are:

  1. Use farther only when you are referring to distance, literal or figurative
  2. Use further only to mean “more”

However, be aware that many native speakers also use the adverb form of further to refer to distance, as in these two examples, from the Merriam-Webster Learner’s Dictionary:

  • He lives further from the office than his boss. (further = at a greater distance)
  • Their house is further down the street. (further = at a greater distance)

It is this adverbial use of further that is most controversial. You can use the adverb further to refer to distance, as many speakers do, but be aware that some people may disagree with your choice of words.

So, it almost makes sense that when Ken Kesey decided to christen his multicolored pyschadelic schoolbus (loaded to the proverbial gills with weed, speed and LSD) before embarking on a trip (in many more ways than one) across the United States in 1964, that the bus would be misspelled as “Furthur.” Whether that misspelling was intentional or not is beyond my ken, so to speak. The spelling was corrected at some point, but the trip, as they say, kept on keeping on.

“Furthur” was a rolling testbed, a transcontinental psychosocial experiment. A bunch of protohippies tripping their brains out across the USA and encouraging the squares to pick up on Timothy Leary’s exhortation to Turn On, Tune In and Drop Out. This was before the Beatles grew their hair out, and half a decade before Woodstock or the Summer Of Love, and hell, LSD was still legal. So it wasn’t as if they were doing anything wrong, per se. But it wasn’t exactly what the Norman Rockwellian architects of post WWII America had in mind, either. The merry pranksters were definitely going where very few had boldly gone, and were encouraging everyone to step beyond what they knew. They were challenging society to buck convention, and go further.

Why am I bringing this up? Well, because of a little thing called Red Bull Hardline. For any mountain biker who has been living under a rock, this is an event that I suspect was inspired by Gee Atherton’s frustration at “only” managing to win two World DH Championships, or the fact that he has something wrong with his adrenal gland. It is a scary as fuck gravity fed carnage fest that has been going on in Wales for a decade. Or it will be a decade as of this year’s running in a few days. Of course it is underwritten by Red Bull, since that’s right up Red Bull’s alley. Find the scariest thing that people can do, and then add some competitive element to it to encourage the most gifted athletes on the planet to see if they won’t die. During the opening test runs of this year’s course, Jim Monro came real close to finding that edge.

hardline

Dan Griffiths captured this image of Jim Monro touching the void. I have never really seen anything quite so intensely terrifying captured so beautifully.

Jim posted the following reel on his Instagram feed, Vital picked it up, and the comments ran hot. Aside from the usual legion of armchair quarterbacks and reactionary trolls, several notable builders and riders who definitively know their shit called the design and intent of the jump into question. The snarkrobot himself even devised a beautiful petition. Watching Jim moonwalk through a very real hangtime before slamming hard enough to raise some difficult questions about the line between concussion and TBI, if there is one anymore, was hard for anyone to watch.

It’s not for me to make a judgment here. I’m old, I can’t jump for shit, and I have always been uncoordinated and risk averse. I watch Red Bull Rampage every year through my fingers with a knot in my stomach. I watch the Erzberg Rodeo and Romaniacs hard enduro events with a similar trepidation. But, there I am, watching anyway. While I might have some issues with how Red Bull manages to capitalize off of events like these in every single sporting discipline you can think of without (to my mind, at least) adequately compensating the athletes who are putting it all on the line, I’m not going to demand a stop to things.

Because Furthur.

Corporate endorsement and questionable profit motivations aside, there will always be gifted humans standing on the edge of what we think is possible. They are the ones with the talent and the drive to step over the edge, and the rest of us can only gape in awe (and fear, and concern). And by the example of those gifted few, the rest of us learn what is possible. Most of us are way too chickenshit to face a jump like this, or to get towed into those monsters at Nazaré, or to base jump, or to free solo El Capitan, or to wingsuit the Alps. But we watch, mesmerized, as the gifted few do what the gifted few have always done. Should we all aspire to follow those steps? Fuck no. But we might be willing to push our own limited boundaries a little further, Furthur, by their example.

It’s not just the physical distance. It’s the chasm in our minds between what we are comfortable knowing and everything we don’t know, and all that we fear. Farther. Further. Furthur.

For those gifted, brave, beautiful human beings, I hold nothing but respect and admiration. I don’t know if there is really a place for us, the global peanut gallery, to make a morality play here. It is not our call to make, whether events like this should happen, or how to build in the guardrails in order to ensure people won’t die. Most of us stay well back from the edge. The people who seek the edge will always find a way to get there. And most of us will watch, which is where the idea of profiting from risk rears its head. Kinda begs the question; which came first, the gladiator or the arena?

proof

Just in case that caption isn't readable: "A one-legged cyclist leaping from a platform a hundred feet high into a shallow pool of water." Same as it ever was. Gladiators gonna gladiate.

There have always been gladiators. It’d be nice if they got well taken care of by the arena owners, with robust insurance policies and generous retirement plans. But that doesn’t seem to ever have been how arenas operate. Good luck this weekend, you beautiful, strong, skilled, talented gladiators. Careful in that compression. Please don’t die.

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Comments

YungSquab
+10 Lynx . Mike Ferrentino taprider Cr4w chacou mnihiser Skooks cxfahrer BarryW tmoore dhr999 Seb_Kemp

I think it's worth pointing out that Jim Monroe is sponsored by Atherton and is an employee of the two geniuses that built this "jump". He didn't really have a choice but to hit it while his bosses were standing there. It's one thing to take risks on all by yourself and it's another thing to push them on other people.

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silverbansheebike
+1 Tommaso Gomez

Great point!

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craw
+2 Tommaso Gomez BarryW

I think about that all the time. It's one thing to have an epic day on the bike in the woods at your leisure and you think, man I'm so good I should go pro. It's something else to line up on command, on the day, and do the biggest move of your life when someone says go knowing it's your career on the line whether you have misgivings about this (possibly life-changing) move or not.

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lacykemp
+10 Mike Ferrentino Morgan Heater handsomedan Lynx . Velocipedestrian mnihiser Muesliman Skooks Andy Eunson vunugu

My opinion: if a feature is deemed "rideable" by the vast majority of competitors then it can stay. If 33.333% of the THREE riders that we saw test this thing ate shit, and every other rider else was calling for its demise (or rebuild) then take it out or rebuild. I'm curious how all of the other competitors were viewing this feature. Were they going to hit it?  And if they were was it because they felt like they had to or because they wanted to?

As a spectator, I didn't like this feature. It didn't add anything for me other than a fear factor, and while I think a healthy dose of fear is important for sports progression, this felt wildly dangerous and over the top. Fear factor does not need to mean death, TBI, or dismemberment factor.

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ReformedRoadie
+3 Mike Ferrentino mnihiser Dr.Flow

After first watching Danny MacAskill (15 years ago!) ride across a wrought iron fence, my response to the question: "is it rideable?" has been "yes, but maybe not by you".

Personally, I watch Supercross, not FMX, and WC DH, not slopestyle or Rampage...

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andy-eunson
+9 taprider Adrian Bostock Skooks Mike Ferrentino Lynx . Jotegir BarryW vunugu Dr.Flow

In a lot of the more "mature" adrenaline (for lack of a better term) sports they introduce rules to make the competition more fair and safer. Like motor racing. I think in F1 as speeds increase to the point of too much risk, rules ban certain things like ground effects back a bunch of years ago. Or safety cages and Hans devices. Or air bags in ski racing. Perfectly groomed icy courses that stand up better so the late starters don’t have to ski ruts. Red Bull Rampage or Hardline aren’t exactly Monster Truck type events, but they are not  mainstream either. Monster truck stuff is pure spectacle like WWF. Red Bull stuff is kind of both. To me though when a feature is so big that a mistake means almost certain serious injury, it crosses the line into stupid. 

To me, it’s much more impressive to win a UCI World Cup DH where the riders skill is more important than their boldness. The freeride skiers seem to be all about boldness and less on skill.  I’ve seen clips of skiers hucking massive cliffs and landing in a heap in soft snow. All the skill of bungee jumping. And I won’t get into the ding dongs that seem to get adulation for skiing out of avalanches. 

Speed sports of course involve danger and how an athlete handles fear is a skill. But there’s a line between that’s really difficult and that’s really stupid. At the end of the day it’s up to the individual athletes to decide. But there is a pressure from fellow competitors, sponsors, and event promoters that the athletes have to be aware of . 

Upon seeing the jump in question, my knee jerk reaction was: "that’s stupid". Upon reflection I reconsidered and think: "that’s fuckin’ stupid". But as I said it’s up the athletes really. They are the ones with the skills I don’t even dream about.

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Jotegir
+1 Andy Eunson

Andy I think part of the reason we haven't really seen broad-stroked change in thinking for this sort of thing in MTB is because we've never had our Senna moment. 

In 2012 Gracia broke his hip and had a severe internal bleed (which kills fast) during a world cup race, but he didn't die.

In 2013 Martyn Ashton broke his back at a demo event and became a paraplegic, but he didn't die. 

In 2015 Paul Bas broke his back at rampage and became paralyzed from the waist down, but he didn't die. 

In 2019 Brook MacDonald broke two vertebra at MSA during training and his extraction was brutal and excruciating. But he didn't die.

These are just the ones I can remember off the top of my head. There's been plenty of career ending or life altering injuries sustained at events or during training, but we've never had one of our heroes die. Yes, Kelly McGarry died riding but it wasn't during an event or live for the world to see. It's sad to think we can't learn from other sports and apparently need to keep pushing the envelope until we do have our Senna moment. It would certainly be both sobering and, to your point, maturing, for our sport.

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mikeferrentino
0

Not to be too pedantic, Cedric's crash was on Reunion Island and not during a World Cup, or even a race if I recall, and was a pelvic break with a ruptured femoral artery. He got real lucky that they managed to get help to him before he bled out, and he also had the presence of mind to understand the severity of the injury and kept his shit calm. But that one was real close.

Feel free to substitute Johnny Waddel at Mt Ste Anne in 2003...

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Jotegir
+1 Mike Ferrentino

Unfortunately for Cedric, he suffered the  internal bleed during practice in Val di Sol in 2012 after hitting a stump. According to him he nearly died from blood loss either on the way to hospital or shortly arriving after. Part of the reason pelvis and to a lesser extent hip breaks are so deadly is that you can lose liters of blood as fast as an external femoral artery bleed but it can be really hard to tell to the untrained eye if your pants are still on. 

Cedric's much more famous reunion island crash was also grisly (and on video!) and only a year or so later. This time the bleed was, obviously, external.

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mikeferrentino
0

Holy shit, I totally forgot about Val Di Sole. Dude almost clocked out, twice, for very similar reasons, in not much more than a calendar year...

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handsomedan
+8 cxfahrer fartymarty Kos Mike Ferrentino silverbansheebike Lynx . Skooks BarryW

I can’t watch anymore.  That crash was awful, especially hitting it knowing it would buck.

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Lynx
+7 fartymarty silverbansheebike taprider Michael Klein Skooks BarryW Hardlylikely

Glad that you wrote this piece Mike, a place maybe were more logical people can discuss instead of over in that cesspool of a comment section.

Personally I don't like it, I think it's wrong, but not for the reason most are stating. Yes, I do think a safety net under there would be a damn good idea, for sure, but other than that, if there are riders willing to give it a go, more power to them, have at it, who am I to stop you. What I have a problem with is the whole man built structure that this even has taken on in the last few years, moving more towards a Freeride type event, but expected to be hit at race speed. I especially don't like all the scaffold to make this happen, didn't like it when it was introduced into Rampage either so the sponsors could get more advertising space and more possible risk viewership.

To me mountain biking is about riding around, up, down a mountain/off road, using/riding the natural terrain, as soon as you start having to "help" mother nature along more than clear out some bush/brush or maybe do a little armouring, it's something different.

Oh and have to reply to the Further/Farther thing, it's pretty firkin simple, it's in the first 3 letters of the words FARther=distance, FURther=anything else you're pushing :-p Don't get me started on we're/were/where :-\

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fartymarty
+7 Lynx . silverbansheebike Muesliman Michael Klein BarryW slimchances57 Hardlylikely

Tech jank gets my vote as well.  IMO Rampage needs to return to it's roots - no digging, just ride the terrain as you see it un-edited.  Ditto Hardline - scratch out a track with a rake and ride it.

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Joe_Dick
+5 Mike Ferrentino Mammal Henry Chinaski Dave Smith Skooks

as a trail builder I find both Rampage and Hardline very interesting. They are building at a level where you don’t get too many chances to make mistakes. The logistics alone are mind boggling. and it is not like you can slap a stunt together, hope it works and fix it if it does not. It took them a bit to dial in the big table and gap last year, but they were close to start with. Gees drop in Rampage last year was literally on the edge of being doable. Guessing they just ran out of time on that one. 

The canyon gap seems poorly executed. but if it was build a bit better, it would be a feature more of these guys would hit with out much stress in relation to the other features on the course. the step down higher up the course seems sketchier. and the road gap after the sketch ball tec section! granted neither of them would result in death if you cased them.

I don’t have a point here. I find it hard to arm chair things I can’t do. seems like they made the right call pulling this from the race this year. I expect they will dial it in and something similar will show up next year. despite the robots best effort. 

Mountain Biking is not a sport where we except death as a posible outcome. Unlike say the hard edge of skiing, climbing or true death sports like base jumping.

on a side not here. a little disappointed the commentary was playing down brain injury’s. concussions ain’t nothin to FK with.

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craw
+1 Adrian Bostock

This conversation with Gee is really incredible. It really speaks to his mindset around these massive features in particular that big drop at rampage last year. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I6Cyo_RB1Mk

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mikeferrentino
+5 Jotegir Dave Smith BarryW tmoore slimchances57

After watching that, not only do I stand by my comment about Gee possibly lacking a functional adrenal gland, but I'll add that he may actually be a robot. To so calmly describe breaking himself so completely on a line that was beyond questionable to begin with, and being so matter of fact deadpan about the extent of those injuries... I can admire stoicism to a point. But. The dude just about died, that list of injuries and the severity of them and the difficulty of extraction and all the people who were on hand to save his life, but it almost reads like he hasn't really gained much "wow, life is a miracle worth preserving" insight.

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Jotegir
+2 BarryW Mike Ferrentino

Charlie claimed Gee as a fellow robot a decade ago and only now that Charlie's a pastor is he, still tongue in cheek, suggesting Gee chill out a bit.

I have to agree with you Mike, the deadpan interview is wild. Far more than an emotional one.

mikeferrentino
+11 Brad Nyenhuis taprider Mammal Cr4w Andy Eunson opeh686 Michael Klein BarryW GB tmb1956 Hardlylikely

I initially started out to write something about this jump, and Red Bull Hardline, from a perspective of "is this even mountain biking?" But I bit down on that. Marathon and parkour both can still be called running, after a fashion. And this is still absolutely mountain biking, albeit one highly crystallized edge of it. You can debate natural obstacle versus man-made until the cows come home, but where do you draw the line? The moment someone puts a shovel into the dirt to shape a lip? Has that already gone too far? what about benching a trail?

Meanwhile, there are athletes out there who will always be seeking new limits. It is not up to me, or you, to say what those limits should be. If someone wants to build a massive and maybe not entirely well designed booter across a canyon in Wales, and then other people want to hit it, who are you or I to call it right or wrong? That's kind of what I was getting at with "furthur" - the notion that regardless of what most of us think is sane or "right", there will always be people who want to break that paradigm and go after something more. The advertising revenue that doesn't necessarily trickle down to those athletes, garnered because of our viewership of such boundary smashing, that absolutely sticks in my throat. But the athletes chasing this? Nothing but respect.

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Roxtar
+2 Mike Ferrentino Cr4w

Perfectly put.

Like you said, "Gladiators gonna gladiate". 

Like their choice of sport or not, these are ridiculously talented, ballsy to the extreme, athletes, and yes, deserve far better compensation and protection than they curently get.

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craw
0

I would be curious to know how that could actually look. Nobody is buying DVDs or paying for content anymore and I'd guess most of the coverage people see is clips on social media. Should attendees get a cheque for being called up, a cheque for actually participating and then they fight more the podium cheques? Would Red Bull foot all those bills and anything beyond would be up to the riders and sponsors to monetize the social media coverage?

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skooks
+1 Mike Ferrentino

I mostly agree with you Mike. If athletes orders of magnitude braver and more skilled than me want to hit that thing, who am I to tell them not to? However, there are lots of things that can be done to mitigate the risk of death or life-altering injuries without dumbing down the feature.  Nets, better padding, improved run-in, etc. I hope these are in place if they decide to include it next year.

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mikeferrentino
+2 Adrian Bostock dhr999

Agreed. The scuttlebut gleaned from around the internets on this one is weird. There's some insinuation that the whole thing was a flex to gain views, and wasn't ever intended to be put into practice for the actual event. But at a construction cost going into a rumored six figures, that seems like an extravagant flex, even by Red Bull standards. And even then, to guinea pig some talented riders knowing full well that it was kinda janky and that the safety was minimally considered, that seems pretty fucked up.

Then there's the implication that a net was requested, and either it couldn't be sourced or made in time, OR Gee didn't want one there. In each case, seems like a serious lack of forethought and rider consideration.

Continuing with the conjecture, reading the internet tea leaves, it sounds like they do have a permit and a five year option on the jump, and that it is highly likely to appear in future events. Still, all of this begs the question why they didn't think it through more thoroughly and build it better and with more consideration for both physics and rider safety the first time around.

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silverbansheebike
+7 Andy Eunson Lynx . Kyle Dixon Tommaso Gomez chacou BarryW tmoore Hardlylikely Seb_Kemp

I don't think it goes much further than the idea that Gee is cooked and is looking for ways to stay relevant, facing the fact that his career is slowing down. You build it, you guinea pig it. Otherwise you'll wind up building the wackest buck-lip there ever was.

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ClydeRide
+6 Mike Ferrentino PowellRiviera Niels van Kampenhout Lynx . shenzhe Jeremy Hiebert

Right? Wrong? Good? Bad? I don’t know. What I do know is that it holds zero appeal to me in either a participative or viewing context. So I don’t watch. Vote with your eyeballs.

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Lynx
+3 Mike Ferrentino Skooks BarryW

I'll watch now that that madness is out, mad respect to the guys and gals who can ride that sort of terrain, especially the new top bit.  I'd love to see that course in person, expect my jaw would be on the floor actually seeing it in real life and not having any lense distortion etc making it look not as steep or gnarly.

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fartymarty
+5 Niels van Kampenhout Lynx . Velocipedestrian Muesliman Skooks BarryW Seb_Kemp

I would rather watch a video of someone riding a hardtail really fast on a steep janky trail (Chromag do a good job of making these types of videos).  As i've said previously watching people flying over big jumps just doesn't do it for me.

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Roxtar
+5 silverbansheebike Nukeitfromorbit opeh686 Skooks BarryW

Am I the only one who read the bottom picture caption and wondered if he had two legs before starting his "career"?

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Lynx
+1 BarryW

Absolutely my first thought Brad, wonder at what point it went horribly wrong and he lost that leg.

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mikeferrentino
+2 Nukeitfromorbit BarryW

I'm just glad someone noticed the caption...

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mikeferrentino
+4 Nukeitfromorbit opeh686 BarryW Jeremy Hiebert

And now that I think on it some more, how the hell did a one legged man get up that hundred foot ladder in the first place, probably with a bike over his shoulder? Hard. As. Nails.

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Roxtar
+1 BarryW

Even more mad respect

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Lynx
+5 silverbansheebike Mike Ferrentino ReformedRoadie BarryW Adrian Bostock

Bit OT, but not really...Did anyone see the video of Johnny Walker hitting the Hardline course on a frikin Enduro Moto and coming within 10 seconds of the fastest time posted by Jackson Goldstone with only 3 timed, full runs and a day of practice?

Johnny Walker rides Hardline course at race pace.

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mammal
+1 BarryW

Yep, that was eye opening. Seeing huge those compressions and tight maneuvers executed on a very heavy machine (relatively speaking) was amazing.

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DanL
0

That video was really tense - and yeah, him flipping the bike left and right through those tight forest and rock sections was incredible

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kos
+4 Mike Ferrentino Lynx . Pete Roggeman BarryW

Agree with most, it's now officially out of hand.

Also, if we "Use further only to mean more” when in the name of all that is holy should we use "furthermore"?!

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slyfink
+3 Brad Nyenhuis Mike Ferrentino Jotegir

I've saved that picture, and labeled it "at least I don't do this". I will show it to my family the next time I get injured riding my bike.

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cxfahrer
+2 fartymarty BarryW

It's not the "gifted", but society. Any society tends to make a cult, those gifted are sent to the borders and beyond to found that cult, which all others may worship or follow, at least once a year. 

I don't think this is an inherent need of any living species. It just tends to happen - but should it happen? It tells a lot about a society which cults the people follow. Drugs in the 60s, Evel Knievel - like stunts. Sounds to me like (north) America ;) - even if it is thought out by a British athlete and an Austrian company.

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mikeferrentino
+4 ClydeRide Brad Nyenhuis Lynx . cxfahrer

Matter of perspective, maybe? I say "gifted" because I am speaking of athletes who have levels of coordination, proprioceptive skill and daring that I will never come anywhere near. I see them as gifted, but it is an arguable point. As to society, we are the ones who celebrate their acts and elevate their achievements via our praise. This is something that I suspect has always been a component of every society. I don't know if cult is an accurate descriptor, but when you think of the immense fan bases and social status that elite athletes in highly visible sport have, it sure can look pretty damn cultish.

Don't go singling out America in this regard though. It's everywhere. Is it a species need? Hard to say. Societally, we definitely elevate these athletes into god/heroes. Do they contribute to the betterment of our or any other species? I'll leave that to the philosophers and cultural anthropologists to wrestle.

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Lynx
+1 BarryW

Definitely gifted, but also, some serious lack of that self preservation whatever it is that makes us not want to launch ourselves off cliffs on bikes.

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fartymarty
+3 Mike Ferrentino Andy Eunson BarryW

Alex Honnold is an interesting one for me.  Some would say he is crazy but I think he is just incredibly calculated and confident in his ability, training and equipment.  I did read that he's taken a step back from free soloing - maybe that's now he has children.  

I think it is the same with those riding Hardline / Rampage.  For them a 70+ foot gap is a 10 foot gap for us mere mortals.

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YungSquab
+3 BarryW Lynx . Hardlylikely

Alex Honnold and Remy Metalier do their homework and follow a meticulous process. Gee strikes me as a guy that has abandoned his process to push the envelope. He looked unsettled and clueless when BK was preparing for the river gap. At Rampage he built a 70 ft drop with no realistic landing. His last three stunts have landed him traction. It seems like he's completely lost the plot and he needs an intervention.

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Lynx
+2 Mike Ferrentino DanL

Matt Jones course walk and man, let me tell you, the new top section is savage AF, massive square edge rocks like paving slabs turned up on edge and he's also confirmed that the river gap is out for this year.

Matt Jones Hardline Track Walk 2024

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Roxtar
+2 Skooks BarryW

Just read that the gap has been pulled.

Enough negative feedback may have saved someone's life.

PB Article

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tehllama42
+2 Mike Ferrentino BarryW

Coming from the same mindset of having to watch events like this with my stomach doing its best impression of a pretzel, here's my actual petition point to the RedBull organizers for these things:

'Perceived difficulty/risk on the live stream is a valid metric for how good a scored run is'

This is the one change I'd insist on making. Not because it's meaningfully bringing the risk down, or changing the way athletes will compete, but I feel like the one area in which both the spectacle can be forged further ahead AND meet the corporate needs to produce increasingly mind-bending media would create a new direction for creating stuff that looks crazier than the actual technical merit and riders who have been on the mountain can perceive. No longer are the armchair quarterbacks who literally cannot ride down these cliffs-with-trails-cut-down-them (myself included) forced to take the word of judges there, instead the merit really is about which is the craziest looking thing from the prescribed media viewing points.  The innovation would become building features around fixed camera points that really create an added spectacle, without having to really push the limits of physics trying to one-up previous canyon gaps or drops (at least to a limited degree - the athletes are still going to push those boundaries, but if given a choice between something that looks crazier, or simply is crazier without being that visually distinct through a livestream or GoPro, I'm going to choose the former every time as a media consumer).

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syncro
+2 Mike Ferrentino Lynx .

I wonder how long till Munro fully grasps that he was very, very lucky he didn't die or wasn't permanently mangled?

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mikeferrentino
0

There's something to be said for the stoicism of the gladiator mindset - "i'm okay, can't wait to get back on it" soundbytes and shrugging it off as no big deal - but knowing what we now know about concussions/TBIs, shrugging it off as no big deal is a lot more fraught with down the line consequence than we used to believe. Agreed, he could have been very, very badly hurt. He could have died. But he absolutely got his bell rung hard. How many more of those does he want to chance?

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syncro
0

@Mike Yup. I think about the Atherton interview that was referenced earlier as well in terms of the gladiator mindset and wonder how he will feel 10-15yrs from now when his body is hobbled or well on it's way there. Is spending the last 15-20yrs of one's life worth it for the relatively fleeting period of greatness?

It would be interesting to do some research into sport injuries on an injury per-participant basis to see how mtb'ing stacks up against other sports/hobbies/activities.

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XXX_er
+1 BarryW

Watching  a  lawn dart wanabe gets old for me, I looked  at the pict but not the vid. I seen a crankworxs pict of the finish line, i forget who the winner was but there were  with 3 para's sitting in their chairs, at least they weren't quad I supose

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GlazedHam
+1 Velocipedestrian

Grooving with the pict eh?

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GB
+1 Dave Smith

Proprioceptive . Is that a word ? If it is I'm using it at the next cocktail party I'm invited to .

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mikeferrentino
+6 GB taprider Fat_Tony_NJ Andy Eunson Kos BarryW

Damn right it's a word.

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GB
+1 Mike Ferrentino

First time I have heard that word .

A whole chapter , or a book,could be attributed to the subject .

Being aware of what your body , muscles are doing when in motion. That's a fascinating subject . There are times riding fast , riding gnar that I am astonished at the level of proprioceptive the link is from my mind to my body . Are we aware of every muscle consciously ? Does muscle memory actually exist?  Jibbing and dirt  jumping involve massive levels of proprioceptive ability.  

Fascinating subject IMO.

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fartymarty
+2 Tehllama42 BarryW

It feeds into flow state.  IMO it's why mountain biking, especially tech, is good great at clearing your brain as it doesn't have the capacity to think about anything else except processing the information that it is receiving and then acting upon that information.

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DanL
+1 fartymarty

extra fascinating is that our brains also include our shadows in the process of proprioception

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DaveSmith
+5 Mike Ferrentino Fat_Tony_NJ Kos Skooks Tehllama42

It's a $7 word. $9.60CAD

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tehllama42
+7 taprider Mike Ferrentino BarryW fartymarty damonsauve Velocipedestrian Hardlylikely

Pretty much in agreement with Marty on that one, the high mental load of proprioception in complex/dynamic environments is so highly correlated with that flow-state zen-like state of being when it comes to the sort of Type-II fun activities we engage in.

In my case, doesn't matter if it's smashing through the worst conceivably technical line on a mountain bike, linking together multi-axis 1080° turns on a racing drone, trying to cleanly transition while chasing in a drift car, or even cleaning a march-in attack with the pipeband -- once I've actually done my mental preparation correctly and get into the activity, the automaticity of rehearsed actions and basically letting my muscle memory function like the analog computers on a Saturn V with very limited oversight from the burdensome digital hypervisor is just a tremendously liberating feeling, and more often than not I'm more amazed when the perceived time warp that comes with it snaps back and I've actually accomplished something that I never really thought I'd be able to execute that cleanly, but after the thousands of hours of effort dumped in finally come good, that's a new happy place where I can run off to when I get overwhelmed by my own neurospicy tendencies.

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taprider
+2 Mike Ferrentino fartymarty

^Hee Hee 

"neurospicy" and lots more new words and terms to use at the next cocktail party you're invited to

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mikeferrentino
+4 BarryW Adrian Bostock fartymarty Velocipedestrian

He had me at "burdensome digital hypervisor"...

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syncro
0

@Tehllama42 if you consider the evolution of humans it makes a lot of sense that we developed an ability to be in a hyper-focused state as we've spent most of our history in survival mode and being prey, not predators. It's wild that we've reached a point where we're using defense mechanisms in the pursuit of pleasure.

https://www.animalbehaviorandcognition.org/uploads/journals/51/4%20Clark_ABC_10(1).pdf

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andy-eunson
+1 BarryW

Oh yes. When I was rehabbing my knee after ACL reconstruction my physio had me doing lots of proprioceptive exercises. They seemed lame at the time. Like step on one of those squishy soft air filled discs but not with much weight. It gets the little muscles firing again after injury induced inactivity.

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DaveSmith
+1 BarryW

For me, seeing this thing was like seeing Chad's Gap on film except its missing Tanner Hall's scream" I broke both my ankles!"

Good to see cooler heads prevailed.

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slimchances57
+1 Andy Eunson

The current line between "sport" and spectacle has been reached, thankfully without the loss of life.

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LWK
0

The whole event is entirely "man made".   Practically speaking, I dont see a difference between the scaffolding for the new feature compared to the wood take off over the road gap feature. or the 100' gap jumps or any of the other bits of the track.

I'm trying to progress my riding skills, always have been.  I'm well past the half way point of my expected lifetime but I hope to be able to keep doing so for some time yet.  THAT is the allure of this sport for me.  So at some very modest level, I can understand the mindset of these guys wanting to do this stuff that is out towards the edge of their (the?) limit.

That all said, the part of this whole thing that I did find strange was how obvious it was that the jump was so poorly built in the first place.   I've spent enough time working to improve my jumping abilities that that was immediately obvious.   So maybe that warrants some internal reflection and discussion for the folks involved in building/designing.

and yes, Johnny Walker riding moto down the original Hardline course was one of the more impressive things I've seen in awhile.

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Lynx
0

LWK, could not agree more on that jump/lip, I'm not a jumper in the least, will do drops, but I do understand physics, if only from mainly life experience and when I saw it I thought "WTF, they built a trick jump over the canyon, who's going to be crazy enough to hit that, let alone trick it".

While the gang up at Dyfi work damn hard building these courses, their track record isn't so stellar when it comes to building lips for big jumps, just remember Bernard's crash when they first intro'd the big 90ft jumps.

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DogVet
+3 Tehllama42 BarryW dhr999

Strangely though, when a mate of mine was at Whistler some time back with Dan and Gee, they didn’t realise the computations, of  transition ,incline,  trajectory and gaps were in many respects formulaic. A fact I found out when I followed my mate a few years later down the lesser jump line at Whistler, his advice follow me in for the speed, stay centred on the bike, the track will do the rest. It worked perfectly, and I’m in no way an accomplished air merchant.

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tehllama42
+1 BarryW

I also think that underscores how hard it can be if somebody is fighting it by going at the wrong pace and trying to muscle a bike around... because physics always wins.

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