For Immediate Release


Original McGazza course goes next-level for Crankworx Rotorua 2018

ROTORUA, NEW ZEALAND March 21, 2018 – New champions have stepped up, campaigns for the King and Queen of Crankworx crowns have kicked off and the stoke levels have begun climbing to a fever pitch. In summary: it’s on. But things are about to get next-level at Crankworx Rotorua. Four live webcast events are on the docket starting tomorrow, including one of the most hotly anticipated events of the season, the launch of the Crankworx FMBA Slopestyle World Championship live on Red Bull TV and crankworx.com (Saturday March 24th @ 3:30 pm NZDT, Friday March 23rd @ 7:30 pm PDT, Saturday March 24th @ 3:30 am CET).

Leading up to the big day, the team from Elevate Trail Building, including Tom Hey, Emmerson Wilken and Scott Bedford, have been hard at work re-visioning and re-shaping the dirt that will set the stage.

Hey says it’s no easy feat given the hands of a legend helped lay the original foundation, and for the past three years the world’s best have sung its praises while launching off it to previously unimaginable heights. He says the re-worked course pays homage to its roots, while providing some fresh challenges.

“The start drop’s the same…it’s McGazza’s so we wouldn’t want to change that,” Hey explains. “The second feature is now a dirt-to-dirt shark fin which is a little more technical to trick. It’ll be a bit better for the guys that’ve got good flow, rather than just the huckers. Third feature, everyone loves that step-up so it’s going to stay the same. After that it used to be the boner log, but now it’s a big dirt-to-dirt hip, replacing the second jump. Hopefully that’ll make it flow through there better. We’ve put the boner back in after that, so after the dirt-to-dirt right it’s a left boner. And then the rest of the course is the same as it was.”

Past winners of the event include Brett Rheeder (CAN) in 2015, Brandon Semenuk (CAN) in 2016 and Nicholi Rogatkin (USA), who successfully landed his signature Twister for the first time in Crankworx competition in front of the Kiwi crowd in 2017.

Hey says the changes will keep things super trickable, but will mix it up a bit, requiring more technicality than the previous iteration of the course.

Crankworx Rotorua Event Director Ariki Tibble says, it was time.

“It’s not that we’re trying to improve things, it’s that we’re trying to move forward and it seemed like it was the right time. After three years…let’s turn a little bit of new dirt and start a new chapter, while keeping Kelly’s fingerprints on the overall course.”

The course rolled out today, along with the first practice session.

Meantime, the rider roster for Saturday’s event has been locked into place. The final pair to launch from the start drop will be two riders who were engaged in some of most epic battles in Slopestyle history last season. Rogatkin, who topped both the Rotorua and Innsbruck podiums last year, will drop in last, preceded by Rheeder, who missed Rotorua in 2017 with a knee injury but stormed the Slopestyle scene when he returned to competition in Europe, winning in Les Gets.

“The McGazza Slopestyle course in Rotorua is literally one of best courses of the year,” says Rheeder. “After seeing the changes in person I’m stoked on what the boys have done. I’m fired up to be back and see what I can do on this course.”

Below is the full list of invited riders in the order they will be dropping in.

  1. BOGGS Reed (USA)
  2. PEAT Logan (CAN)
  3. PAGES Simon (FRA)
  4. FEDKO Eric (GER)
  5. MESSERE Anthony (CAN)
  7. TESTA Torquato (ITA)
  8. GENON Thomas (BEL)
  9. CAVERZASI Diego (ITA)
  10. LEMOINE Tomas (FRA)
  11. NYQUIST Ryan (USA)
  12. GODZIEK Szymon (POL)
  13. RHEEDER Brett (CAN)
  14. ROGATKIN Nicholi (USA)

Noticeably absent from the start gate in Rotorua will be Emil Johansson, 2017’s Crankworx Slopestyle World Champion, currently sidelined with a back injury.

In addition to taking on a new course, riders are taking on a new game. Earlier this year Crankworx and the Freeride Mountain Bike Association (FMBA) joined forces to create a singular elite-level series of Slopestyle mountain biking events. The Crankworx FMBA Slopestyle World Championship (SWC) now represents the pinnacle of the discipline of Slopestyle. Riders in Rotorua will be vying for points in the battle to be named the Slopestyle World Champion.

Hopes, dreams, bikes, and the heroes behind them – they’ve all touched down in New Zealand as the best mountain bikers on the planet begin their season-long pilgrimage for glory and good times on the Crankworx World Tour. It’s all about to go down, live from Rotorua to the world.

Get the times and details for all live webcasts during Crankworx Rotorua: http://bit.ly/2Fo51w0 w0

The quest to be crowned the Slopestyle World Champion will be coming to you live, and on demand, on all your devices exclusively on Red Bull TV and crankworx.com. For news and highlights from the Crankworx FMBA Slopestyle World Championship: crankworx.com

Keep up to date on all the latest from the FMB World Ranking: fmbworldtour.com

Get the latest on everything bike related on the Red Bull Bike channel: redbull.tv/bike

Slopestyle build photos: http://bit.ly/2FOwrPG

Start lists and results: Results

Details on the royal battles: King/Queen points

News: Press releases

Photos: Flickr

General resources: Media kit

About the Crankworx World Tour

The Crankworx World Tour is where ordinary humans perform the extraordinary and launch into the realm of the unimaginable. From slopestyle ninjas to downhill champs and enduro experts, sideways steeze-masters, slalom slayers and pump track pros – they all ride faster, climb further, fly higher, and go bigger than what was once thought to be possible, taking on the world and the challenges set before them with seemingly superhuman power and passion. In 2018, Crankworx brings their feats of two-wheeled magic to four stops around the world. Come along for the ride as the Crankworx World Tour travels to Rotorua, New Zealand (March 17-25), Innsbruck, Austria (June 13-17) and Les Gets, France (June 20-24), before bringing it home to Whistler, Canada for the 15th year of Crankworx competition (August 10-19).

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Media Contact:

Julia Montague | Communications Manager, Crankworx World Tour

+64 21 774 792 (NZ)