RedBull.com: Remy! Tell us how the $7k in 7 Days project came about?
Remy Morton: Kyle from Red Bull came to me with the idea of building a trail in just seven days, and with just seven grand. I was really stoked on it, because it’s basically what I do anyway – build during the week and ride on the weekends, so it was the perfect scheme. Next thing was finding a place to do it. Luckily, right where I grew up, there’s a bike park now – Boomerang Bike Park – that didn’t exist the last time I was in Australia. I’ve known Shane, the main guy there, forever. He’s built a lot of the trails around the Gold Coast, and I basically saw him every weekend of my life for the last 15 years. So it was cool to be able to give back to him, and to the local community, by building a new trail with Red Bull.
Amazing. Can you tell us more about the run you designed?
The beauty of trail building is that every time you get to the terrain, you’ve got to work with the land. There were three spots on the mountain we could’ve built on, and the spot we ended up choosing actually matched a few of the things I’ve been dreaming up for years. It’s nothing super innovative, but it’s definitely a more BMX-inspired run but for downhill bikes. It was pretty cool to build something like that, there’s definitely not much like it around.
How long would it usually take you to build a run like that?
I reckon that would’ve been a month’s build. We were pretty lucky – we had a really good crew, we’ve all worked together before and we all know what is needed to get stuff done. Everyone knew what they were in for, they were doing 14- or 15-hour days some days, with no set breaks. Just grab a snack and get back in. The boys went so hard.
Your dad, Jim, helped out too. How was it to have him on the tools?
Yeah, it was sick. I grew up riding and building with dad every day. I'd just get home from school and he'd always have built new jumps for himself and for us kids. I definitely think that's the thing that he misses most about me not living at home, is us building and riding together. And it was pretty sick to have him involved because his background is carpentry, so we put him on all the timber work. I just explained what we wanted, and he basically just knocked it out with no plans.
You got worked pretty hard on that wall ride on your first run – where was your head at, after that happened?
I’ve ridden a few wall rides before and I made it real clear to the boys, “this is exactly what not to do.” I was telling them all day: “You really don’t want to turn down early.” And once you come around that berm, you’re not going stop. If you land the berm you’re committed to the wallride, you’re not going to stop. And as soon as I hit the exit of the berm I just sunk into three inches of dirt, which slowed me right down. I knew exactly what I was in for. I tried to hold the wall, but it only helped or about half a metre until I turned down.
It was pretty bad. I basically wrapped my chest around a tree. I was laying on my back, winded, my mouth full of blood. So I was choking on blood and I could’ve breathe to get it out. But once I got my breath back I wanted to get back up again. I took four more runs but I was coughing up a lot of blood, and I have bad lungs from previous injuries, so I thought I better get it checked out. So I got an ambulance to the hospital and spent two days there. And then I went straight back to the run, fixed the landing out of the berm, and rode it the following day.
Did it ever cross your mind that you wouldn’t give it another go?
No. I knew I was going to do it again. The only concerning thing was whether or not I’d be able to get fast enough. But taking a few days off was actually a blessing in disguise, because it let the dirt settle, and the next time we rode, it was perfect. It was agood feeling.
With everything you’ve been through already, your mum and dad must’ve been pretty nervous about you giving it another crack.
They’ve seen it all before, a few times.
Trail building is a huge part of what you do too, right? Almost as important as the riding itself? Tell us more about that.
Yeah definitely. Growing up, I was probably building for 70% of the time and riding for 30% of the time. Since signing with Red Bull, I’ve slowed down on the building a little and been able to focus on my riding more. I was working full-time as a trail builder before, but now I’ve been able to be a little more selective.
But they both work together, riding and building. It’s like doing art – you’ve got your hand, and you’ve got your pencil. I have my shovel and my bike. I want to build stuff I want to ride, and my riding style relies on me building – they work together, hand-in-hand. It’s what I’ve always done, since the age of four and five. I’ve been working for trail building companies for the last seven years, then last year, I bit the bullet with my mate Jacob (who’s in the video) and we started our own trail building company, called Flux Trail. He’s an insane rider, as well as builder, so it works out well. For us, it’s more about the lifestyle: we want to build the shit we want to ride.
How does it feel to have the backing of Red Bull to bring projects like this to life?
It’s unbelievable. Most companies I've worked with in the past just see me as a racer, so it’s amazing to have the full backing of Red Bull, for my riding and my building. It’s so sick.
Can Remy build his ultimate run and give back to the community with just seven days and a $7,000 budget? Watch to find out.
Remy Morton: Seven Days and $7K