Behind the Scenes - The Unsung Heros of Red Bull Rampage
The sweat, hard work and blisters that go into building your favorite rider's line at Red Bull Rampage are too often overlooked. It's hard to imagine how 21 athletes and their dig crews can transform a raw hillside into the meticulously sculpted and manicured lines you watch on TV in just four days. The riders, with input from their crew, have to settle on a line, decide if the amount of work is possible and even team up with other athletes to make it happen. Everyone loves to watch Rampage and root for their favorite athlete, but let's not forget about the unsung heroes who make the event possible, the dig crews.
Before the crowds and cameras show up, a world of work goes into creating the safest possible lines down the mountain. Things most of the public never sees can be total game-changers to the diggers. Adam Billinghurst, who was on Kyle Strait's dig team this year, shed some light on just one example. "Having water piped to the top of the venue is a game changer," said Billinghurst. "Having to hike water up from the bottom is time consuming and exhausting. Many of the landings near the top of the venue would not have been possible without this new water set up. I think it's improved the safety for the riders while allowing them to go bigger. Both things everybody wants to see."
This year, like every year before, the riders and diggers worked until the crowds showed up, checking lips and cleaning up landings until the first rider dropped in. Once it's go time, the diggers are right there to offer last minute help and support the riders after each run. An incredible amount of work goes into shaping this event, and here's our thank you to the diggers who get it done.