Our man in Vienna, Ryszard Syryczyński, goes behind the scenes at Vienna Air King to catch up with the riders ahead of the main event. Here, he talks to Red Bull's Andreu Lacondeguy...
RS: Because of the fact that there is no winter in Barcelona, how was your off-season after Red Bull District Ride? What were you doing?
AL: My off-season was a pretty much an on-season, travelling a lot. I went to Australia, right after District Ride, to ride Giants Of Dirt, which is the biggest dirt jumps set in the world with Dane Searls. And then after that I went back home, where I start building my own new jumps. I pretty much spent whole winter on my dirtbike, just riding dirt bikes, building new dirt jumps for my bike and just on the bike. I've been riding more than ever I think. I'm pretty pumped about it.
RS: I've heard that right now you're riding more on your FMX bike than on your mountain bike. How can you mix that? Is it easier to ride big jumps now, after riding a lot on FMX?
AL: For me it's kind of natural because I've got my own place, my own compound back home in Barcelona. I've FMX ramps and then I've got mountain bike jumps at the same place so I can just go there with both, just sesh my FMX bike and then just put some shoes on and start riding my mountain bike. In one day I ride both, so changing from one to the other is not hard at all, it feels kind of natural. I just like going fast so that's why I ride big jumps. If you go fast, you'll jump further. That's maybe why my jumps are little bigger.
'I just like going fast so that's why I ride big jumps'
RS: What about your expectations for Vienna Air King?
AL: I've just come to see everyone. It's been like maybe three to four months since the last competition. It's good to see everyone here, to see what everyone's up to. It's cool to do some riding with them. Unluckily the weather this year is kind of shitty – pretty windy. It's been raining a lot. We're just gonna try to do the best we can. Let's just wait till it gets better and then do some runs and just have some fun riding. That's the main goal for me, just come here and have fun with everyone, just enjoy the weekend. I like some comps but it's not what I ride at home, it's like a completely different setup. Coming here, for me, is like going to a skatepark pretty much.
RS: What are your plans for this season and which contest are you interested in?
AL: I'm looking forward for Rampage for sure. This year it's going to be pretty nuts. Everyone is hungry for it. It's happening every two years so everyone has been waiting for it. It is what it is – big mountain and big lines. I'm pretty stoked about it. I'm gonna be filming for this new movie Where The Trail Ends so it looks like I'm gonna be on my big bike a lot this year and I'm stoked, I just can't wait to go out there and build my line, ride and see what's everyone's doing. And then I'm gonna be on at Crankworx too, I'm gonna do Bearclaw (Invitational). I'm just gonna try to travel as much as I can and just do some riding. That's what I want to do this year.
RS: Who do you imagine standing on the podium here?
AL: I don't know, maybe whoever that's better. Maybe [Sam] Pilgrim cause he's always on the podium. And then Yannick [Granieri] cause he's French and then I don't know. I want Pavel [Alekhin Vishneviy] from Russia to win. He's the craziest guy, no brakes man, so he can send the craziest tricks. I'm gonna be cheering for him for sure.