Red Bull has a serious penchant for events that are more than a little inventive, ranging from the Rampage, a huge freeride mountain bike event, where riders pull huge tricks off equally enormous geological features in the middle of the desert, to Flugtag, where teams compete to build and fly the craziest flying machines, to the Air Race series, where the pilots and their craft are a considerably more suited to the job. Amongst these many different gatherings, one thing is common - the spectator (and in some cases, the participant too) is left in no doubt that they're witnessing something special, and of course, that it's Red Bull behind it all.
Their approach to FMX is little different, as a cursory glance at the event's website will tell you: five countries, five cities, a dozen riders, huge jumps, and bigger tricks. With the UK leg of the tour, the organisers have chosen the old Battersea Power Station as the venue, and are aiming at an appropriately epic crowd of 17,000 people to gather there to see the culmination of the series, and the crowning of the tour champion. Throw into the mix Cambridge's very own Chris Birtch - one of the riders shredding the Square in Glasgow - and it's bound to be an astonishing event.
For Glasgow, the tour's demo riders were in full swing, with the solitary jump proving to be a launch platform for some unashamedly impressive style. Huge backflips, seat grabs and cliff hangers littered the two sets, winding up passing shoppers with a baptism of FMX fire, and drawing them in to see the rest of the demonstration, and to hang around afterwards for photographs, t-shirt signings and of course, the obligatory free Red Bull. As a taster of the possibilities of the main London show - which on the basis of the display seem virtually limitless - you could do little better.
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