After rocking the boat across the States with the Red Bull Bargespin crew, we chat to Venezuelan BMXer Daniel Dhers about Dew Cup, X-Games and Under My Wing, as well as telling us when's the best time to drop that new trick…
A hectic 2010 saw you bouncing around the world and the year ended with you once again wearing the Dew Cup crown. Was the Dew Cup your top mission for 2010 and what else did you set out to achieve?
"After a not-so great 2009, I focused more and got to where I wanted to be with my riding. Once the season kicked in, my top priority was to stay consistent on the Dew Tour and try to do well at the X-Games. I think last year I did my homework and I was better prepared for the tests that came my way."
"In riding you've always got to come up with something new, something that defines your riding as different."
Constant innovation of tricks make you the man to beat at top pro events. How do you keep your moves fresh and when is the right time to drop a new trick?
"In riding you've always got to come up with something new, something that defines your riding as different. If you just look like somebody else then you're just a carbon copy and it's not so interesting. I guess line-wise I don't have so much imagination but I love to push the trick side of riding. It's constant trial and error of stuff until it works. Sometimes something feels really easy and it's ready for the next comp and sometimes it's something that takes you 1 or 2 years to throw in at a contest."
It’s not just tournament play that brings out your best. You were also a big hit at the Red Bull Bargespin...
"It was a really crazy experience, riding on a boat as it's moving!! While we were riding we didn't feel so much difference, but when you were watching and waiting to take a run it looked nuts!"
Also along for the ride on the Bargespin were other top BMX bandits. Was there a healthy competition on the barge to see who could push the boat out the furthest?
"Everybody was there for a good time that’s for sure. I think everybody wanted to push themselves hard and max out the boat’s capabilities. You just have to check the video for proof!"
A big part of your last 12 months has been the Red Bull Under My Wing project. Can you tell us about the places you went to teach and the lessons that you passed on?
"I think BMX needs to be worked on worldwide, yes in the States and Europe it's very developed but we need to teach people all over the world about BMX. What better way to start than with the Red Bull Under My Wing clinics? First we chose Trinidad and Tobago thanks to Trevlon Hall and the Red Bull team there. They are trying to raise awareness of the sport and it was a great experience to get involved. We also went to Peru, Chile and Colombia where the sport is more evolved. Some of the guys wanted to take up the sport professionally and some just wanted to learn a few tricks."
Did you learn any lessons from the kids?
"The experience definitely made me remember where I came from and how much of a struggle it was to find a proper park or to get new parts. It also made me remember how my motivation for riding first started."
"All the kids were so hungry to ride, it was awesome!"
What has been your stand out memories from your involvement with Under My Wing?
"In Trinidad I enjoyed Trevlon’s passion for growing the sport and seeing the kids get excited to have ramps for the first time. In Peru, I remember everybody wrote what tricks they wanted to learn on the lip of this foam pit. It was amazing to see the kids pulling off these tricks just hours later. In Chile, one of the kids came so close to pulling off his first Whip and in Colombia a bus full of riders showed up to the warehouse we used for the day. All the kids were so hungry to ride, it was awesome!"
After seeing so much of South America recently what are your hopes for the future of BMX in the continent? Are you seeing interest and infrastructure grow around the sport?
"I see a very bright future. Even in the countries that we didn't get to I know that they are pushing to have new parks and places to ride. I think in the next few years we'll have a new force coming from South America!"
Who are the other South American BMX riders to watch out for in 2011?
"There's a few riders in Colombia who are turning up the heat and Andre Jesus from Brazil is also riding pretty hard. Hopefully a couple of new riders from each country will impress at an Under My Wing clinic and prove their talent!"
We can’t get enough of Colombian teenage sensation Mariana Pajon, how special is this girl?
"I haven't met her yet, hopefully we can cross paths sometime soon. For now, I just know she's been world champion something like eight million times which is awesome, especially being so young!"
What are your personal goals for 2011?
"The main thing is to be fully on it riding-wise and try to be consistent on the circuit. Also I want to do more Under My Wings around the world and hopefully try to organize a couple local contests wherever it's possible to help the sport!"
- Check out Daniel's profile page
- Under My Wing video with Daniel Dhers
- Red Bull Bargespin in action
- Visit the Red Bull Bike Sports section