So just got back from the winding road of out of town shredding. After Sunpeaks we turbo roosted it to Silverstar to catch up with the NSMB guys for the annual AIRprentice competition. If you aren’t familiar with the AIRprentice then simply put it’s a competition whereby NSMB select their next team guy. Over the weekend the groms are closely tested and monitored for drug use, swearing, and granny bashing. Not really, although i’m sure that kind of behaviour wouldn’t go down too well. Instead it’s a pretty casual affair which puts all the current team guys and the prospects together for a weekend of riding and hanging. There’s no crying or temper tantrums or pandering to the camera, instead the prospects get to shred as hard as they can, shoot photos, and hang out together. The current team guys are pretty mellow but the whole weekend they are taking mental notes about who is shredding hardest, but more importantly, who is the right kind of person for the team. They are looking for a friendly, personable, professional attitude really. It doesn’t matter if you can do flip whips or go faster than everyone else down the hill if you are a total dick to everyone around you, can’t represent your sponsors interests, and get intoxicated on a deadly cocktail of barbituates then go smash a granny in the evening.
Last year they moved the comp from Whistler to Silverstar and so now there’s even more reason to leave town on the first week of July. Silverstar rocks!!! Only my second time there but it feels like home. The trails are incredibly well thought out and on each trail you can feel the love that the trail crew have put into each inch of trail. Oh and the berms…there’s alot of them and they are things of beauty. Alot of trail builders could do with looking how Silverstar build berms. Pre-berm and rise into them, then alot of bulk on the exit where you power out of them. Thats the not so secret ingredient in the recipe that most miss.
On the first day eveyone shredded together in the morning then before lunch we got to session a brand new section of trail called ProStar. Little drop, to berm, to step-up, to ladder drop in a natural bomb hole into a big right handed step-up hip. So rad. It was only finished the day before so was a little spongy but it still rode really well and I can’t wait to get back to Silverstar just to ride that hip again…and again, and again.
In the afternoon, the prospects were paired off together and they had to source a photog dude to go session with all afternoon. They worked hard getting some interesting and original shots. Kudos to all the photogs too as the resulting slideshow, which was shown later that night in the bar, was outstanding.
The results were so good that in everyones inebriated state it was decided that everyone would get up at 5am the next morning to get the good light and shoot again. Everyone agreed this was a marvelous plan and so celebrated this genius by raising another shot of Jager again…and again, and again.
Amazingly everyone but a few turned up at the meeting spot at 5am despite the weather dealing us a handful of overcast greyness. A few shots were banged and a couple bangers emerged. I especially loved it because I got to destroy a fresh berm to rollover before breakfast on my birthday. Normally I like to have sex first thing on my birthday morning, but this was better.
I came along to offer my expert wardrobe advice and pep talk spiel too. Being up early is amazing, especially when you get to kill berms.
I have to get to work right now so I’ll have to end this blog post here. If you are eager to learn the results then simply click HERE.
ALL PHOTOS BY THE GANRLY EX-PRESIDENT, TODD HELLINGA.