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Here's everything that happened at Red Bull Art of Motion
Red Bull Art of Motion went down in Astypalea, Greece and here's everything that happened at the biggest comp in freerunning.
The freerunning action is officially over. After four days of competition, here's everything that happened at Red Bull Art of Motion 2022.
Here are the winners
When the dust had settled on a week of unreal competition it was young gun Travis Verkaik who came out on top of the whole event, narrowly beating out fellow Brit Ed Scott by one point. Sydney Olson ended up winning the Spot Challenge and the Live Challenge which put her in the Top Female position overall.
Overall top 5
- Travis Verkaik – 15 points
- Ed Scott – 14
- Elis Torhall –11
- Shea Rudolph – 6
- Evgeny 'Archie' Aroyan – 4
Female top 3
- Sydney Olson
- Lilou Ruel
- Noa Diorgina & Miranda Tibbling
People's Choice Award Winner
Athletes' Choice Winners
Hardest Hitter: Elis Torhall
Postman (Biggest Send): Dominic Di Tommaso
Mad Scientist (Most Creative): Bob Reese
Athletes' Favorite: Travis Verkaik and Lilou Ruel
Most Collaborative: Ed Scott
How the format worked?
The new event format took place over three different challenges: Explorative Challenge, Spot Challenge and, finally, the Live Challenge. Scores were cumulative from the whole week. The first day kicked-off with the Exploration Challenge, which gave athletes a chance to work with one another as they explored the entire island.
"I think this new format is really cool," last year’s female champion, Noa Diorgina, said ahead of the event. "Training with friends, shooting videos, this is what we do all the time. And it's in one of the best locations I've ever trained at."
Learn more about the new format here.
What was the location like?
The new location offered a fresh take on the tracks from past years with more roof gaps, bigger elevation changes and an endless variety.
For the Explorative Challenge, the athletes not only had one location, but access to the entire island.
The location for the Spot Challenge was chosen for the variety of setups available in close proximity. Variable-sized roof gaps, waterfall-style ledges and angled descents were all part of the unique architecture of the location. To up the game even further, a few choice additions were made to the existing structures to create opportunities for never-before-possible moments like the roof gap bar setup and massive slant wall.
The Live Challenge location was one of the most compact and intricate set-ups Red Bull Art of Motion had ever seen. A series of tightly packed walls, ledges, and ramps cascaded down from the town square underneath the iconic Astypalea windmills. Numerous roof gaps and a solid bar set-up made for the perfect opportunity to lay down a classic combo line or one massive big trick.
What happened during the Live Challenge?
This year’s live event saw some of the craziest action in Red Bull Art of Motion history. Thanks to the new format, athletes had the freedom to push themselves farther than ever before.
Swedish rising star Elis Torhall blew minds with his wall Double Full followed by a Swing Full in Full Out.
Lilou Ruel of France and Sydney Olson of the US battled it out as the new generation versus the old school, with Lilou hitting her signature Double Cork, a Pimp Flip and Devil Drop. It was Sydney’s 540 Side Flip to Handspring, Inward and finally a Pistol Back Full that earned the judges top female score.
Travis Verkaik earned himself a top spot with a very clean line kicked off by a Kong Gainer into a tight alleyway, plus an incredibly technical Kong Gainer in the middle of his run. He finished off with a Turn Vault Cast Back.
Bob Reese had one of the most exciting moments of the day with his Vortex Side Flip over the roof gap, Cat Leap over the audience in the alleyway and Twist In Back Out, but it was his Swing Side using a chair that of course garnered him the most cheers from the audience.
In the end, it was British veteran Ed Scott and his seamlessly connected high level line that took the day. He started things off with a solid Gainer precision, gave us a juicy Webster straight into Tsukahara and finished things off with a Giant to Toe on front.
What happened during the Spot Challenge?
The Spot Challenge brought all 16 athletes to one ideal location to highlight all of their different skills as they filmed a 60-second clip with one of eight seasoned freerunning pro filmmakers. The big stand out of the day was Travis Verkaik of the UK who threw down the most mental collection of next-level moves, all leading up to a mind-blowing kong gainer over the central roof gap that earned him first place for the day.
Newcomer Elis Torhall put together an outstanding compilation of game-changing moves that left the judges reeling and earned him second place in the Spot Challenge. His swing full in back out and cast back full into a tricking combo impressed lead judge Luci Romberg, who said: “His level of precision, his amplitude, and overall level of difficulty really impressed us.”
The USA’s Sydney Olson came out on top for the ladies with her high-energy edit jam-packed with bangers all rounded out with a stomped tsukahara.
The top five of the day were rounded out with Shea Rudolph and Bob Reese of the US who came in third and fourth respectively, with newcomer Stefan Dillinger of Austria in fifth.
What happened during the Exploration Challenge?
The first day of competition had the athletes searching the island for their perfect locations to shoot three clips during the Exploration Challenge. They collaborated with other competitors to film each other, laying down their most fluid lines or their biggest tricks.
“I think this new format is really cool.” said last year’s female champion, Noa Diorgina from the Netherlands. “Training with friends, shooting videos, this what we do all the time. And it’s in one of the best locations I’ve ever trained at.”
Shea Rudolph laid down a line that started and ended with bangers on the stone staircases surrounding the windmills, specifically a running gainer precision step through right into a flare to cast back that earned him third place.
In the end the British besties Travis and Ed battled it out for first and second place on the classic rooftops overlooking the sea.
The day definitely took its toll on the athletes, as we saw a few people having to take a break early in the competition due to injury. Japanese style master Ryuya Kawasaki tweaked his ankle on a cartahara and last year’s Red Bull Art of Motion champion Krystian Kowalewski had to sit out the whole day after a rough landing on his first trick of the day.
A twist of fate led to online qualifier Aiden Rudolph of the US having to drop out of the competition at the last minute due to an injury during his preparation. Luckily, an equally skilled athlete was close at hand as the second-place finisher from the Online Qualifier was Aiden’s twin brother Shea.
Each of the competitors put together their own unique take on the challenge and delivered stunning videos of their moves, but in the end it was Ed Scott’s massive flip precision over the roof gap directly into the layout palm drop that earned him his top place in the standings. At the end of the day athletes submitted their best clips to judges and online for the People’s Choice Award.
Twice a Red Bull Art of Motion runner-up, Britain's Ed Scott always performs well on the big stage.
French fan favourite, Lilou Ruel, rounded out the day making a big splash as she finished her last run with a leap into a swimming pool from the second-storey balcony of her hotel room.
Clips from the Exploration Challenge are live on www.redbullartofmotion.com.
Over the course of two gruelling days of competition we saw athletes push the boundaries of what was possible with the human body. Unfortunately, it took its toll forcing some athletes, including Ryuya Kuwasaki, Krystian Kowalewski and Dominic Di Tommaso, to bow out of the competition due to injured ankles. Here's who started the Live Challenge:
- Shea Rudolph
- Miranda Tibbling
- Ella Bucio
- Bob Reese
- Elis Torhall
- Noa Diorgina
- Dimitris 'DK' Kyrsanidis
- Evgeny 'Archie' Aroyan
- Stefan Dollinger
- Lilou Ruel
- Sydney Olsen
- Ed Scott
- Travis Verkaik
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