Basagoitia wins overall title in series
Appeal Sports Editor
Minden’s Paul Basagoitia is on top of the mountain bike free riding world right now.
Basagoitia finished second over the weekend in the second of two events in the Red Bull Line Series in Nuremburg, Germany. With his second place finish in Germany and his win in the first event of the series last month in Italy, Basagoitia won the overall title in the series. With the overall title, Basagoitia won $15,000 euros out of the total purse of $20,000 Euros and also won a brand new Ford pickup.
“I’m super stoked,” Basagoitia said. “I never thought I could get to this point. I’m just lucky.”
Basagoitia actually only got to ride in his truck for about 30 feet in the awards ceremony in Germany and his truck isn’t due to arrive from overseas for a couple of weeks. Basagoitia said he felt honored to be the first one to win the truck in the series that was held for the first time this year.
“To be the first guy ever to win a truck, it feels pretty cool. I feel pretty priveleged. It’s unreal. It sure hasn’t hit me yet I won a truck. It’s kind of weird it’s actually happening to you. I’m kind of shocked about it.
“I’m sure once the truck comes here, it’s going to hit me pretty hard. I can’t wait until it comes out here.”
Basagoitia said he doesn’t know exactly how much his prize money is in U.S. money.
“I don’t know, yet,” he said. “I’m sure it’s going to be huge since the U.S. dollar’s low right now.”
In the Red Bull Line Series, mountain bike riders compete in an urban setting where they do tricks over all kinds of obstacles set up over a lengthy course. At Hamburg, riders were scheduled to do two runs in the finals through six districts – essentially areas with a concentration of features for the riders to challenge.
In the first district, the drop district, the riders had to choose between the castle wall drop and a smaller drop which lead into the Marzocchi quarter pipe. In the second district – the downtown district – there was a mandatory drop over a rail followed by two box jumps.
Next was the Wing District – a combination of two mini ramps allowing riders to throw 360s, backflips Supermans and more. The street district was home to Oakley’s Sick O Award on Friday evening – an ideal showcasee for the most progressive urban riders. The fifth district was the Step up’n’ Down District near the town hall where riders rolled a curved wallride into the big BRAUN box and then the catwalk to take a short breather before the final district, the Dirt Districk in which riders finished with their best moves.
Qualifying runs were held on Friday and Saturday, with the finals on Sunday. It began to rain just before the first run of the finals. The rain stopped after 15 minutes and it was decided to run the first final without the drop district since the landing was too wet and dangerous. It rained again after the first run and it was decided that would be the only run in the finals.
Basagoitia started off with a flip over the downtown stair drop. He did a 360 out of the Wings District, then another flip over the street box and a couple more strong moves in the street zone. At the BRAUN box he did a 360 off it and went up the catwalk to prepare for the dirt and his final jumps. He finished with a tailwhip, the most difficult trick in the competition.
Another local rider, Carson City’s Cameron Zink also competed in the Red Bull Line Series. While Zink didn’t have as much luck in the Red Bull Line Series, he did win another prestigious title, the Crankworx Kokanee Slopestyle in Whistler, British Columbia, Canada.
The Crankworx slopestyle event is similar to snowboarding slopestyle, except it’s done with mountain bikes on dirt.
Basagoitia was the two-time defending champion in that event, but struggled this year.
“My head wasn’t into it,” he said. “I ended up crashing. I just really wasn’t focused. The last three weeks have been reall tough. It’s been pretty stressful.”
But Basagoitia said he was glad that Zink won, giving the area the summer’s two most prestigious mountain bike freestyle titles. Basagoitia said he also took pride in how well area riders did this weekend in the X Games.
Carson City’s Matt Buyten won the Moto X Step Up event and local riders took second and third in the Moto X Freestyle. Carson City’s Adam Jones won silver and Mike Mason, who grew up in Minden and now lives in Carson City, won the bronze.
NSMB.com provided information for this story.