I headed out to Loosefest a month or so ago for Dirt Magazine and Wideopen MTB for the first time to witness the insanity that is this jump line. Now, if you're not familiar with Loosefest, watch the video below and prepare to have your jaw dropped. If you do know what Loosefest is about, then you'll understand it's a group of mountain bikers who don't race (which is what you'd typically do) but just do big jumps and make cool videos, That's about the jist of it really, but a percentage of these riders have made a career from it. Not racing, no podiums.. just doing really cool sh*t on their bikes, getting loads of exposure for brands and sponsors, and bringing in the keep that way.
The brains behind it all and living legend, Nico Vink. He still thinks that the jumps can bigger and that we haven't hit the limit yet.
Kiwi Conor Macfarlane is a prime example of a rider who doesn't really race, but gets by by doing the craziest events in mountain biking (Red Bull Rampage, Loosefest), having sponsors who help him out, shooting videos and just generally having a good time without the pressure of race runs.
Style dog Remy Morton. Known for his banging Instagram videos. He took a huge slam on the last jump here and is on the road to recovery.
Bas Van Steenbergen. Or Steezeburger as we branded him. His first time at the event, scared sh*tless at the start, but couldn't get enough of them by the end of the week. A seriously cool dude who has pulled off the 'professional freerider and video guy' down to a tee.
The real rebels... Ronny Racing. Travel Europe, live in an ambulance, and have a good time all the time. They are XL cans of beer in their hands too.
The most talked about up-and-comer, Somerset's very own Joel Anderson.
BMXer turned mountain biker, Tom Isted is an absolute nutcase.
Ronny Racing's vessel. Sputnik 2.0.
We don't race, but we still go fast as f*ck.
Arguably another living legend. Kristoff Lenssens is his name, and is Nico's best mate. Flat out in the digger, and does every jump Nico does, but has near enough zero presence on social media, so barely anyone knows his name. If there was ever an underdog.
This is the general attitude from the group of individuals here towards the rest of the MTB industry.
Style dog Craig Evans enjoys the Belgian sunshine before sending himself over some 80ft gaps.
Josh Lewis is another example, no racing, or not much at least. He puts all his time and effort into videos, riding skills and developing the 50to01 brand.
Talk of the town.. Josh Bryceland. Everyone knows he's not racing now. He's just having a good time. Will he return to the world cups though?
Finishing with the biggest rebel of the lot... Jasper Flashman. Anti everything this man is, and I wouldn't put the guy down as a racer. It seemed like he was pretty much the backbone of the Loosefest community, and the freeride scene back in the UK.
Until next year!