The essence of Crankworx Whistler is fun and the Whip Off event is great for showcasing what fun really is. The crowds gathered on the famous Crabapple Hits to watch nearly a 3hr clinic on whipping. Check out some of the highlights inside with lots of photos and videos.
Words: Crankworx / SickLines Photos: Jason Nixon
The Whip Off World Championship was born 2 years ago at Crankworx and it has become quite the event to say the least. Initially started behind the scenes with help from Sven Martin the event has grown in leaps and bounds since its inception.
The crowds began to trickle in around 11:00AM for the show and wouldn’t depart until nearly 2:30PM. The weather was great and the sun was beaming down on the course. It made for some hot temperatures in the sun as the riders, photographers, and fans fared as best they could with the heat.
Raw footage from the jumps
Each and every jump was used in the competition and there were tricks of all kinds being thrown. Back flips, supermans, whips, and everything in between.
Travis Pastrana and the Nitro Circus crew also took part in the main event throwing whips and backflips.
The pro roster was deep at the Whip Off including favorites like Brendan Fairclough, Danny Hart, Thomas Vanderham, and may more looking to make a mark on the scene.
2013 winner Bernardo Cruz knows how to get his bike sideways. He got 2nd place and threw down some nasty whips the entire session.
It’ll be great to see what this younger generation has in store for us if they’re growing up on hits like these.
A panel of five judges, including Tyler McCaul, Sven Martin, Duncan Riffle, Alan Cooke and Craig ‘Stikman’ Glaspell had the tough task of evaluating the whips. Glaspell said three things were a part of the final decision.
“The beginning of the whip, the actual whip and how they land – there’s some guys that are doing really sick whips but the take-off’s a little sketchy and the landing’s a little sketchy. So kind of hitting all three is what we’re looking for.”
14-year-old Finn Iles finished the day with a cheque for $2000 and the respect of riders, industry and fans. “I’m unbelievably stoked,” said Iles. “I don’t even know what to say. It’s so awesome.” It’s been a whirlwind week for Iles after receiving the go-ahead on Monday to compete in today’s event..
“It’s been pretty exciting…when I found out I was in I was so stoked,” said Iles. “People were telling me that my whips were good enough to win, so I just tried to throw down as best I could and I ended up winning. I’m super happy.”
Coming in close behind Iles was last year’s winner Bernardo Cruz (BRA), with Andreu Lacondeguy (ESP) taking the third podium spot. Fourth and fifth spots went to Ryan Howard (USA) and Graham Agassiz (CAN).
A top female whip was also named – Casey Brown (CAN) earned the distinction, one she say’s she’s proud to have earned even though the field was small, with only two competing.
“I think a lot of people have this ‘women can’t jump’ kind of mindset,” said Brown. “But I’ve been doing it for such a long time, it’s probably my favourite thing to do. You just show up and ride with a bunch of friends all day. You couldn’t ask for a better day really.”
Casey’s teammate Eddie masters thought he was at the beach and shredded in sandals during the event.
A crowd of more than 3000 took in all the action on the seventh day of Crankworx competition. That number will soon see a big boost, as a video of the top five whips will be making its way to the world will be released tonight. The video will be posted on www.crankworx.com with voting open for the fan-favourite whip, with the winner receiving $500.
When asked why riders and fans get so stoked about the event, Glaspell said it’s a simple formula: “It’s not about perfection, it’s just about having the sickest whip.”
Crankworx festiives continue on. Check www.crankworx.com for live broadcasts of your favorite event.