Tyler Bereman competes in Red Bull Imagination
© Chris Tedesco / Red Bull Content Pool

Everything You Need to Know About Red Bull Imagination 2021

Spoiler Alert: Tyler Bereman's freeride dream project returns on September 14, 21 and 22.
By Erik Shirk
10 min readPublished on
RIDER UPDATE: 09/07/21
Freerider Tyler Bereman’s Imagination is nearly upon us and 2021’s iteration hosts a star-studded lineup. Rider’s like Colby Raha, Tom Parsons, Josh Hill, and even Bereman himself will be competing in this year’s Red Bull Imagination. The list truly goes on. In Bereman's own words, “This year it’s looking like we’re going to go to have ten to twelve athletes. Having more athletes to me is definitely better because it just brings those different styles and flavors to the table. Everyone has a unique individual style to their own riding.”
So without further ado, let’s take a closer look at some of the athletes competing in this year’s Imagination event, and get the inside scoop on why Bereman chose each rider.
When it comes to Red Bull Imagination, Tyler Bereman is the commander in chief. Boasting over 22 years of motorcycle expertise, an AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship, a family full of flat track experience, and multiple X-Games medals—Bereman has a good idea of how to have a good time on two wheels. With this in mind, he has created the Imagination event to showcase all of these different skillsets and apply them to free riding. While running an event and competing in it may seem like a lot to juggle, last year seemed to go smoothly. So we’ll expect the same for Bereman in 2021.
Colby Raha
Colby Raha is undoubtedly the rebel of this event, and you may remember him from X-Games a few years ago running spikes on his chest protector paying homage to the great Metal Mulisha crew. While his style may stem from early '90s motocross though, his tricks and skill set are nothing close to vintage. “Colby brings a really cool unique setup and approach to everything. He’s got some cool tricks, he rips on the quarter pipes, he can flip, he can do just about everything. He’s really creative and he has a lot of bike skill. Stoked to have Colby back,” says Bereman.
Cole Seely
Seely's story begins in racing Supercross and Motocross… but where it will end is still in question. After retiring from professional racing, Seely has recently taken his skills to the hills to see what he can accomplish in the freeride scene. In Bereman’s words, “Cole brings a cool approach to it (Imagination) with a lot of racing skill and background. It’s cool to see his racing skills come into play and his freeriding skill start to show. He’s been around the block. He’s done a lot of Motocross and Supercross races all the way to motocross of nations. It’s really cool to have someone like that step in on the tail end of his racing career and start a freeride career.”
Ryan Sipes
There’s no doubt about it, Ryan Sipes is the Jack of All trades. You may remember Sipes from our "General Sipes" series in which he took part in several different motorcycle disciplines (sometimes all in one day) on a quest to become the world’s most well rounded racer. Well, to no surprise, when Red Bull Imagination 2020 was brought to the table, Ryan was itching to get out there and get his feet wet in the freeride world. While quarter pipes and ramps may be new to Ryan, last year was a true testament to how versatile he is at riding a motorcycle. “We’ve got the general again Ryan Sipes. He’s the jack of all trades. He does a little bit of everything, and I don’t think there’s anything that dude can’t do,” says Tyler. Adding that, “I’m actually going to help him learn how to hit the quarter pipe. I think one thing that he was lacking last year was never really hitting a ramp or a quarter pipe, but being a racer he came, showed up, and put on. He was one of the first guys to jump all of the technical jumps and he looked great. It was cool to see him step out of his comfort zone and take on a free riding contest.”
Tom Parsons
The veteran of the event, Tom Parsons, is back in 2021. Parsons' style and skill is unmatched when it comes to freeriding, and while he may be one of the older competitors, this experience comes to him in the form of a huge advantage. Parsons' has been taking part in freeriding long before it was popular in the motorcycle community and we have a feeling he’ll be around long after too. Boasting one of the best whips on two wheels, Parsons' is a full force when it comes to riding ramps, hills, and technical drops. “Tom is coming off an X-Games gold medal. He’s the elder statesmen in our field. He’s got insane style, cool creativity, and stoked to have him back for this year,” says Bereman.
Vicki Golden
As the one and only woman in the field, Vicki Golden stands tall amongst the men. Last year, she was able to solidify her spot and show the boys how it’s done as she took on even some of the more technical obstacles before the boys. “Vicki was an awesome edition. She’s one of the few women that is out there ripping with us. She was a huge surprise last year. She showed up and she was hitting the tree jump and a couple of the other jumps before the boys. So it was rad to see her step up to the plate,” says Bereman.
Darryn Durham
Mix a little bit of The Misfits, some NOFX, and some Social Distortion together and you’ve got a good look at the overall vibe of Darryn Durham. No question… Durham is the punk of this group. He rides fast, aggressive, and he’s not afraid to go huge. Last year, one of the bigger jumps on the course left him hurt just as the fun was starting to begin. So, we’re stoked to see what he can accomplish this year and hope that he walks away unscathed. “I’ve done a lot of riding, racing, and freeriding with Darryn. He’s won some Supercross, he’s been on the podium in outdoors, and his bike skill is second to none,” says Bereman.
Josh Hill
In this group, Josh Hill is most definitely the sender. Once a very successful Motocross and Supercross racer, Hill took his skill to the freeride scene after an injury would leave him sidelined from racing for an extended period of time. Now you can catch Hill experimenting with Electric Motorcycles, competing in World Class Hillclimb events, and making his way from track to track in search of the biggest transfer-jump possible. If there’s an otherworldy transfer-jump that wasn’t meant to be sent, Hill will be the one to step up and put it all on the line.
Jimmy Hill
Last but not least we have Jimmy Hill: the expressionist. As a musician and renowned creative, Hill is always looking for unique ways to express himself. He has been known to backflip his motorcycle off of logs, rocks, humps, and bumps, showing the world that there’s beauty in creativity outside of amplitude. Don’t be fooled though, when it comes to going big, Hill can stand with the best of them. It seems as though he just prefers to look at the world a bit differently while using his motorcycle to broadcast this creativity. Watch out, because the line that no-one thought of, is already getting mapped out in Hill's head.
While these are just a few of the legendary athletes confirmed for Red Bull Imagination 2021, we hope to add more riders in the weeks to come. Having each of these rider’s bring their own flavor to Imagination was a big goal for Bereman, and it seem’s as though he’s done just that. In the future he’d even like to open the doors to more riders, allowing freeriding to blossom in the way he’d always dreamed. “We’re looking at giving some younger kids an opportunity and a couple underdogs,” says Tyler. “The final rider list is to be determined but we’re really looking at giving everyone a shot. Little by little we’ll get there.”
From the mind of Tyler Bereman returns Red Bull Imagination in 2021, with a course debuting new features and even more methods of finesse. If you didn’t catch the event in 2020, let us spell it out for you. Derived from a passion for stylistic expression on two-wheels and placed in the gorgeous Great Plains of Kansas, Red Bull Imagination set out to be the first true competition platform for freeride motocross. Take a course design from the veteran course designer Jason Baker of Dream Traxx, add in the most skilled Freeriders in the world, and then tell them that their run will go as far as their creativity will take it—that sounds like a recipe for a successful second year of Red Bull Imagination.
For this year, three new sections will be added to the course offering more creative freedom for the riders to illustrate their skill, style and prowess. And that’s not the only thing changing: the start and finish line has been removed. Why? The idea is that eliminating the start and finish line will create a better session-ing atmosphere encouraging the athletes to push the course even more. Start and finish line sections create a beaten path between Point A and Point B. Now that it’s not in sight, riders are free to attack the course any way they see fit. This style has been implemented in pool/bowl session skateboarding contests for years and Tyler aim’s to closely emulate this.
  • Let’s start with the “Big Dawg Section” updates. This portion of the course will entail a Quarter Pipe with a spine feature on the side for riders to use one jump landing from multiple directions, allowing for more creativity in a small space.
  • Next up is the “Technical Jib Section.” This is the snowboard-style jib-like section including a wallride and hip that riders can hit in opposite directions at the same time.
  • Last but not least, we’ve added a Supercross inspired Transfer Zone as an ode to the legend Kevin Windham. This SX Transfer Zone will give off skatepark vibes and provide a clean slate for riders to express themselves on a cornucopia of line combos.
Tyler and his Imagination
Tyler and his Imagination
Safe to say there is definite inspiration from other action sports spanning this course.
The first event held last year was transformative for freeride motocross and included some of the best freeriders around. While the full rider list will be announced closer to the event, we can guarantee that Tyler will invite a star-studded roster of riders for year two to lay down the hard charging runs alongside him. Here is a tease at who is returning this year:
  • The jack-of-all trades, Ryan Sipes
  • Four Time X-Games medalist, Tom Parsons
  • Nine-time X-Games medalist, Colby Raha
Ryan Sipes, Colby Raha, and Tyler Bereman in Kansas
Ryan Sipes, Colby Raha, and Tyler Bereman in Kansas
This year’s Red Bull Imagination is heating up to be one of the most creative events of the year. Make sure to catch up on all the action from Red Bull Imagination 2020 on Red Bull T.V. if you missed and the action and set a reminder to join us starting September 14th for Red Bull Imagination 2021.