ON THEWIRE “T
he moment my
wheel touched the actual slackline for the very first time, after months of training and preparation and whilst being completely selfconfident the only thing I could think was: this is impossible!” says Belaey.
“But with proper belief in my abilities, not to mention sheer focus and determination I managed to succeed. This was without a doubt the hardest challenge I’ve ever faced.”
The hardest but most probably not the last, as the Belgian remains ever so ambitious: “I want to be the first person to ride a bike on the moon. Wouldn’t that be sweet?” In 2012, when Kenny was producing a clip in Paradiski performing tricks on a cable lift, he was asked if there was anything left for him to do. Riding a slackline from one rock to another, he said — Kenny Belaey ‘Balance’ was born. It took another two years before the project really took shape.
More than a year was spent on the actual realisation, as well as six months of intensive training with his trial bike on a slackline. At first on a lowline — one metre above the ground — but gradually going higher, up to nine metres.
Once training was completed the crew headed back to Paradiski, the summer and winter resort in the French Alps that groups Peisey Vallandry, Les Arcs and La Plagne together. When, after a few days of hiking, the crew finally spotted La Roche Fendue, everyone immediately knew this was the spot — everyone, that is, except Kenny.
“Looking at it only one thing crossed my mind: hell no”, says Belaey. “That rock was 120m high above the ground. I didn’t even dare stand on the ridge so how on earth would I ride my bike on a slackline over that gap within the next thirty days?” But the project was on so there was no choice but to go for it, difficult as it might be.
“Every second on that slackline was a nightmare” Kenny explains. “Every inch gives a different feeling because the slackline constantly moves, changing the surroundings and making my orientation points