Die Fest Series in Malmedy gehört zu den Urgesteinen der Big-Air Freeride Events. Neben Nico Vink, Andreu Lacondeguy, Vinny T, Brage Vestavik und vielen weitere ging 2021 auch der 12-jährige Raul Schneeberger an den Start.
Fest Sessions Malmedy We haven’t been the most fortunate with regards to the weather in 2021, After having a 4-day rain hold for Session Royal we had another 10-day rain hold for the Malmedy session. This year’s rider lineup was one of the heaviest we ever had in Malmedy and we were really looking forward to session the jumps with this crew. Andreu and Lluis Lacondeguy, Vinny T, Brage Vestavik, William Robert, Jaxson Riddle, Remy Morton, Szymon Godziek, Thomas Genon, Sergio Layos, Marcin Rot, Hannah Bergemann, CJ Selig, Kristoff Lenssens, Jeroen (Red Belge) Meersman, Nico Vink, Raul Schneeberger.
Riding big jumps requires perfect conditions for the jumps to work, so there‘s not much else to do but wait when the rain pours. Sometimes it gets super frustrating watching perfectly shaped jumps being rained on, but it’s part of the game. Luckily we built a new medium line in Bikepark Ferme Libert last year, and the crew got to enjoy riding the bike park. (We‘ll release a couple of raw videos from the park sessions the days following the highlight video).
After one week of riding the park and watching the big jumps being rained on, the weather forecast didn’t seem to improve so the crew split up, On Sunday most riders decided to return home due to other commitments. Nico, Remy, Hannah, Hanna, Marcin, Redbelge Raoul, Alois, Skye, and Oliver decided to drive 1000km south back to France to be able to ride the Royal hills line in perfectly dry conditions.
We planned two days of riding in Royal Hills before heading back to Malmedy, During those sessions in RH our minds got blown. Towed by Aloise Adamo, (one of the shapers of both lines) 12 years young Raul Schneeberger was working his way down the Royal Hills line. The fact that Raul was chipping away jump by jump wasn’t the most impressive but his approach, how calm, calculated, and mature he was riding the line impressed us the most. Raul made the jumps look easy with his effortless style. He cleared the line until the 24m left hip but was lacking some speed for the main set. That‘s when Nico offered to tow him in and Raul hit the main set at Royalhills after his 2nd or 3rd try following Nico. Raul didn’t get to ride the second last shark fin and the last jump at Royal Hills because we had a 5-day weather window coming up in Malmedy and on Wednesday we decided to head back to Belgium to finally hit the Malmedy line.
Returning to Belgium the conditions were looking good. We did some work on the jumps Thursday afternoon so they were good to go for an evening session. Unfortunately not all the riders managed to make it back to Malmedy due to other commitments but we ended up having a small but super solid crew. Andreu Lacondeguy, William Robert, Thomas Genon, Marcin Rot, Hannah Bergemann, CJ Selig, Jeroen (Red Belge) Meersman, Remy Morton, Nico Vink and Raul Schneeberger. After putting in a couple of weeks of hard work and watching the jumps being rained on for one week straight it felt beyond amazing to finally session the jumps with the crew. On Saturday evening, what was unthinkable 8 years ago happened. Raul had been up at the roll-in with us riding the warmup hip. He reached out to the crew and mentioned he was keen to hit the first set off the mainline. Nico offered to tow him in and after a couple of test runs, Raoul hit an 88-foot jump. This is one of the most special moments we ever witnessed at a fest event, The vibe was unreal. On Sunday’s session, Raoul was hitting the first set multiple times and started to eye up the 2nd and 3rd set of the line. The crazy thing was that Raoul was looking so calm and controlled on the jumps that it didn’t worry us that he was considering riding the second and third set of the line. Again Nico offered to tow Raoul in and after a couple of tries Raoul blew our minds again and he hit the biggest set of jumps of the world.
After all the waiting for the rain to pass, and things not working out, the 2021 edition of the Malmedy session turned out to be one of the best editions ever. Some next-level riding went down this year, Andreu Lacondeguy was throwing down, as usual, Thomas Genon absolutely killed it on his debut on the Malmedy jumps and William Robert stepped up the game by spinning one of the biggest jumps ever spun. Hope you all enjoy the video. The