Lacondeguy sending one in front of a huge crowd in Vienna.
Words and photos: Alex Boyce
Video: Masters of Dirt
Vienna, Austria, was the location for the latest edition of the Masters of Dirt: a dirt jumping show that has taken in numerous cities across the world, including recently in London in 2013. The show brings together the greatest riders from MTB, BMX, FMX, and Snow Mobile, and lets them show what they can do to the world, all on some of the biggest dirt jumps ever constructed and used in front of the public.
Masters of Dirt’s focus is different to many other dirt jumping shows out there. The main aim is to allow riders that are usually thinking of competition runs and point scores in front of judges, to pull off bigger than normal tricks on perfectly sculpted jumps, that allow the riders to show how really good they are, or what they have been working on. Most of the riders prefer this kind of format as they can ride how they want and also learn off the other riders there. It’s kind of a chance to show off, in a really good way.
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The public rarely get to see the quality of riding that Masters of Dirt has, as the jumps at many events are not built with the same level of attention to detail and quality – they really do put a lot of effort into this event, as I’ve witnessed in the couple of times I’ve attended. The start towers for example are 10 metres high, giving more than enough of a speed boost for the huge jumps. The fact that the mountain bikers are riding next to the best FMX riders and BMX riders in the world also leads to some interesting runs, with each discipline feeding off the others. Most of the riders tend to have a crossover anyway and ride each other’s type of bike when they are at home training. All this vision was stared 10 years ago by a then-15-year-old from Austria called George Fechter, who has many interesting stories to tell, as well as the fact he is a rider himself. A show made by riders for riders showcasing the biggest tricks in the world…
Notable tricks this year included Nicoli Rogatkin with his 360 quadruple tail whip, seen and landed for the very first time. Sam Reynolds was also present, riding as confidently as ever and out for having fun on a bike. He mentioned also how his back is now also stronger than ever and looks forward to the riding ahead this year. Andreu Lacondeguy even more well known after his Rampage performance this year also showed his extreme skills with one of the most extended ruler flips ever seen on a 10 metre jump.