Back flips, tail whips and 360s were the ticket into the final round of the slopestyle competition at the Ranchstyle Mountain Bike Festival yesterday, May 7, in Grand Junction, Colorado. But it took the best riders of the Freeride World Tour throwing down big tricks at every launching point, from the “Whale Tail” to the “DT Swiss Drop”, to make it into the money.
Entering the final round, it was anyone’s competition to win. It might have been crowd-pleaser and last night’s Best Trick winner, Mike Montgomery, or New Zealander Kelly McGarry (identified by pro rider and announcer Mike Metzger as “the tallest rider in the competition…with the golden, flowing locks!”), who ranked first as riders took their final run.
But it was Greg Watts (aka, “the robot”) who took the podium with big back flips and consistent tricks at every turn. Second to Watts was Anthony Messere, followed by McGarry. Fourth was crowd favorite Montgomery, and rounding out the money winners was Tyler McCaul in fifth.
Ranchstyle continues today with the Big Slalom competition. This is the fourth year of the Ranchstyle Mountain Bike Festival and the first year the Grassroots Cycles-sponsored event plays host to the Freeride World Tour. The other two U.S. stops on the tour are Crankworx in Winter Park, Colorado, and the Teva Mountain Games in Vail.
Here’s a video of 3rd-place finisher and Diamondback rider McGarry’s amazing run in the finals:*
More videos and pics are on the way. See you on the trails.
– Angela Sucich
*Full disclosure: I’m admittedly biased for Diamondback. And they’re awesome.