Canyon-trike jump adds to the thrills

Achild’s tri­cy­cle as­sists anew jump­style for the Sho­tover Canyon Swing.

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Queen­stown’s Sho­tover Canyon Swing has pushed two of the world’s best pro moun­tain­bik­ers to the edge as part of a new movie for world­wide ex­po­sure.

The ‘‘Tri-scare-a-tops’’ is the new­est launch style for Sho­tover Canyon Swing, the world’s high­est cliff-jump op­er­a­tor. Launch­ing by trike re­quires jumpers to cy­cle down a short alu­minium slide on a child’s tri­cy­cle to be flung into the 109-me­tre abyss of the Sho­tover River Canyon.

Not sur­pris­ingly the for­mat fits well into a moun­tain­bike movie cur­rently be­ing filmed and star­ring a num­ber of well­known top-level com­pet­i­tive rid­ers and semi-re­tired pro moun­tain­bik­ers, in­clud­ing Cana­dian An­drew Shan­dro and Swiss Rene Wild­haber.

The Anthill Films pro­duc­tion is tak­ing in the sights and sounds of Queen­stown from the per­spec­tive of the lo­cal moun­tain­bike scene, with some ex­treme ad­di­tions.

Sho­tover Canyon Swing Gen­eral Man­ager Matt Hol­lyer says the last film from Anthill was viewed by 2.5 mil­lion peo­ple when first re­leased on­line.

Shan­dro and Wild­haber have big rep­u­ta­tions. Wild­haber has won sev­eral in­ter­na­tional mega freeride races in­clud­ing the Mega Avalanche down­hill moun­tain­bike race in France, Trek Bike At­tack Len­z­er­heide and Urge, as well as sev­eral down­hill and cross-coun­try races in Switzer­land and else­where.

Shan­dro has won the World Cup Down­hill Moun­tain Bike twice, is four-time Cana­dian Na­tional Cham­pion Down­hill MTB and has been the North Amer­i­can Cham­pion Down­hill MTB. He has also de­signed cour­ses and starred in sev­eral films.

Wild­haber, who ‘‘took the trike’’, com­pared the ex­pe­ri­ence to Mega Avalanche, where up to 1400 of com­peti­tors de­scend 2000 me­tres over treach­er­ous moun­tain ter­rain. Wild­haber has won it seven times.

‘‘If you can han­dle the trike, you’re ready for the mega.’’

Wild­haber also did Sho­tover Canyon Swing’s in­fa­mous ‘‘Gimp­boy goes to Hol­ly­wood’’ tan­dem with Shan­dro. Sus­pended over the Sho­tover River Canyon, the pair were re­leased ‘‘eye­balls first’’ as they freefell and then swooped to­wards the riverbed.

Sho­tover Canyon Swing is known around the world as a must on the ad­ven­ture cir­cuit. Af­ter 10 years of op­er­a­tion, in­no­va­tion is still key.

Matt Hol­lyer says the new jump­style brings to­gether wheels, dar­ing, speed and flips to make ter­ri­fy­ing fun.

‘‘Tak­ing the ‘Tri-scare-a-tops’ is a lit­tle bit like that scary moment when you’re rid­ing a bike solo for the first time as a kid, but di­alled up to adult-sized adren­a­line-fu­elled ac­tion,’’ he says.

He com­mends staff on con­tin­u­ally man­ag­ing to come up with new and crazy ex­pe­ri­ences.

The Sho­tover Canyon Swing is achieved by launch­ing your­self from a plat­form perched on top of a high cliff edge. Reach­ing speeds of up to 150kmh as the rocks rush to­wards you in a 60-me­tre freefall, the ropes then smoothly swing you out across the Sho­tover Canyon.

Herewego: Rene Wild­haber down­sizes the wheels and up­sizes the thrills on Sho­tover Canyon Swing’s new‘‘Tri-scare-atops’’ jump.

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