With the notable exception of Lopes and Bingelli, this is what every single rider in the pro field wants to do in their Sea Otter race run:
Fact: by the time he pulled over, he’d already hit 95% of the photographers and video guys.
If you’re not on the first page of results at the Otter, trust me, no one is going to know whether you got 26th or 79th, whether you had a flat, whether you finished your run, or if you got abducted by aliens midway down the track. As far as established media is concerned, manual-no pedal guy from the video had a complete race run.
This is partly because the rest of the track looks like hell and the jumps and berms up top always look decent, but mostly because the pro photo guys are as burned out on Sea Otter as the racers.
Side note: look how small this XL frame from 2013 is. Circus bear on kid’s bike.
When this photo landed on Pinkbike, you could tell it’s a Margus Riga photo by how far down the track he walked to take it. None of the other photographers on retainer at Pinkbike would ever bother walking to the end of the first uphill for photos. This is clearly the work of a young up and comer, full of piss and vinegar, of dreams and hopes, trying to find a new angle and set himself apart artistically from the established guys. In other words, a try-hard.
The young guys don’t realize it’s a long season and there will be plenty of time to flex your artistic muscles on your own projects and with other clients. If you’re even at Sea Otter, this is not an artistic exercise. This is purely commercial, and the only thing that matters is meeting the extremely low artistic expectations of your corporate overlords. Meeting those expectations can and should be done on the first jump straight at the top of the hill, easy walking distance from the road, and preferably seated, with a beer in hand, fully embracing the absurdity, hopelessness, and nihilism of your existence.