Red Bull Rampage 2010 – Zink, Atherton and Bearclaw Tore It Up!

Another article for Suite that was deleted so I’m including it here for safekeeping.
Red Bull Rampage returned with a vengeance in the hellish terrain of Virgin, Utah where Cam Zink nailed the victory and with it, the FMB World Champ title.
Red Bull Rampage, undoubtedly the most intense freeride mountainbike comp finally returned, bringing together 21 of mountain biking’s best riders battling it out with each other while contending with wild weather. Cameron Zink (USA) took home the win, the Best Trick award and sewed up the first ever Freeride Mountain Bike (FMB) Champ title.

The event began earlier in the week with riders getting to check out the course, plan out lines and practice like crazy for three days before the qualifiers on Friday. There were 23 riders vying for 10 slots and an opportunity to ride against the 12 pre-qualified riders in the finals on Sunday, October 3, 2010. The pre-qualified riders were the top 15 from the 2008 Red Bull Rampage – the last time the event was held – minus three riders out with injuries. Rampage follows the Freeski model of riding and judging in four categories: line difficulty, fluidity, air and amplitude, and style.

Red Bull Rampage 2010 – Cam Zink Takes It

Cameron Zink finished up an amazing 2010 season by topping it off with the Red Bull Rampage title. Zink had a consistent season and for his efforts, he also won the first ever overall FMB Champ title. The trick that sealed the deal at Rampage was his huge 360 drop off the Oakley Icon Sender on the treacherous course. “Being the Red Bull Rampage champion is a dream,” Zink said after the event. “I won Crankworx twice and that’s something on its own, but this is one of the first real mountain biking contests ever. To win it is the most amazing thing in the world.” Zink took fifth place at the Red Bull Rampage in 2008.

On his first run of the finals, Zink went for the 360 off the Oakley Icon Sender, a rotation 30 feet out and 40 feet down. He nailed his line on the top ridge and then catapulted off the sender, going in a perfect rotation for the 360. The landing was sketchy and he came down a tiny bit sideways which brought him down hard and dazed him on the crash. Unbelievably, Zink attempted the 360 on his second run; he dialed in a perfect rotation, stuck his landing and rode to the finish straight into the lead.

Red Bull Rampage 2010 Results

The riders included returning competitors as well as rookies, and they represented different styles – hardcore freeriders, big-mountain legends, downhill racers, and slopestyle trick-oriented riders. Although the field was heavily Canadian, seven countries and three continents were represented.

Cameron Zink (USA) 89.2
Gee Atherton (England) 82.4
Darren Berrecloth (Canada) 81.2
Andreu Lacondeguy (Spain) 79.0*
Geoff Gulevich (Canada) 77.2
Thomas Vanderham (Canada) 76.6
Robbie Bourdon (Canada) 76.0
Kyle Strait (USA) 75.6
Logan Binggeli (USA) 74.8
Kurt Sorge (Canada) 73.0
Alex Prochazka (Canada) 72.2
Tyler McCaul (USA) 71.8*
Graham Agassiz (Canada) 71.0
Cedric Gracia (France) 70.4
Greg Watts (USA) 65.6*
Michal Marosi (Czech Republic) 64.2
Jamie Goldman (USA) 63.8*
Curtis Robinson (Canada) 62.4*
* Rookies

Berrecloth, (Bearclaw) broke bones in his hand in early August at the Monster Energy Slopestyle at Kokanee Crankworkx in Whistler, BC and was questionable for Red Bull Rampage. Not only did his hand heal but he was tough as ever, taking third with a awesome run in the finals. He laid down a line he tried unsuccessfully in 2008 complete with wallride, direction changes and a huge 360 drop at the end for redemption and a spot on the podium.

Red Bull Rampage History

Red Bull Rampage began in 2001 and was held annually in Virgin, Utah through 2004. Right away, it became the preeminent freeride mountain bike event. Red Bull Rampage is staged on some of the most fierce and frightening terrain on the planet. The contest has always been one where riders get to bring their creativity to freeride mountain biking. Riders choose their runs, or lines between a start gate and a finish line which lies some 1,500 feet below vertically on three ridges of trails, gaps, canyons and cliffs.

After a hiatus during which a new venue was sought, in 2008 the Rampage returned to Utah. The competition included the natural course features of the punishing landscape and added wooden launching send-offs. Again for 2010, the event organizers tried to find an alternative site for the event, but none could compare to the unique terrain and conditions in Utah. Derek Westerlund, Red Bull Rampage Event Media expressed this, “We travelled all over the world looking for another place as unique as Utah to pull a bigger, better, badder Rampage. We were scouring the planet, nothing’s as cool as Utah. … it’s the perfect place to throw down on a mountain bike.”

Red Bull Rampage Course Changes for 2010

“We continued some of the concepts from ’08, making stuff bigger and cleaner with better transitions,” says Event Director Todd Barber. “We learned from some of the stuff that didn’t quite work as well as anticipated in ’08 – we just tweaked it and made it better.” New for 2010 was the Oakely Icon Sender, a chute that sends and drops riders 30 feet out and 40 feet down to a landing. The course also included other wooden take-offs and some dirt doubles scattered along the course. The gnarly 60-foot canyon gap feature was part of the course again but included a step-up landing and steeper transition, giving riders more options for throwing tricks into their lines.

To watch a video with some of the history of Rampage and to get info and highlights from the 2010 Rampage, visit Red Bull Rampage. For bike junkies that need other news, photos, and videos, be sure to pay a visit to PinkBike.com, where there is an absolutely insane point-of-view video of Bearclaw’s run that gives fans the vertiginous sensation of taking the ride down the course as a rider experiences the Rampage.

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