Make sure you check out the latest issue of Freestylextreme Magazine out of the UK for a couple of ripper features I’ve written for them. The first is on 2014 Red Bull X-Fighters Champ Josh Sheehan after I hung out at his Western Australia pad for a couple days, and the other is a classic chat with Kiwi MTB legend and Youtube phenomenon Kelly McGarry.
You can read the magazine online for free right here or you can pick up a free issue when you buy any merch from their huge online store. Check it out!
Kiwi BMXer Paul Langlands is one tough, determined and visionary bugger. For him, it’s not enough to be widely touted as one of the ballsiest dirt-jumpers in the world. In fact, titles mean nothing to him, really.
You see, for Langers, riding a BMX is all about pushing himself and the limits of what’s possible. Back in April last year the laid-back bloke filled me in on a little project he was working on in the rolling hills behind the small NZ town of Cambridge. I use the term “little” loosely here, as what he was planning was anything but small. Langers wanted to eclipse the world long-distance record for BMX dirt-to-dirt jumping set by a good mutual mate of ours, Dane Searls, back in 2011.
The biggest difference was the fact that Langers was building his entire set-up by hand, carving the upramp and downramp out of the hillside and using a natural slope as his roll-in. No plywood, no pozi-tracks, no crowds, no hype, pomp or circumstance. He wasn’t doing this for money or for fame. There wasn’t any pressure from sponsors or investors demanding what he must or mustn’t do. Paul was doing this wholly and solely on his terms.
After several failed attempts, blown tyres and cracked helmets, Paul gave me the call-up on January 2 that he was ready and the record attempt was on. It was time to get this done.
Conditions that evening were far from ideal. The wind was a blustery head-wind that would’ve turned 99.9% of riders away straight up. That meant his roll-in speed was compromised and he had to change his technique slightly to ensure he carried enough speed.
After several roll-ins, practice-runs and a couple of crashes and sketchy landings, Langlands hit his jump, lofted for what seemed an eternity, kissed the edge of the downramp and rode away with his fist in the air, convincingly smashing the long-distance record.
That feeling of pure elation, adrenalin and relief is one only a handful of people will ever experience in this lifetime, but Paul’s far from done. He’s already begun modifying his upramp to jump even further in a few months’ time. I’ll be there to document it all, that’s for sure!
You’re probably wondering why there’re no stats (such as the distance he actually jumped), riding shots or proof of Langers’ epic feat floating about on the internet yet. Basically, the Ryan McCrae-produced video documenting his achievement will be released in the coming weeks, while all the images and detailed information will be printed in an upcoming issue of FreestyleXtreme Magazine.
For now, enjoy a couple of these out-take photos and wait with bated breath to watch history be made very soon…
Every now and then you get thrown a curveball at a photo shoot that seems impossible to curtail. You’re given lemons and you can either sit there sucking them, or as the saying goes, you can make lemonade.