Luxury Bikes

In search of the freeride spirit – mountain bike blog post

The idea first came to me in the summer when I was incredibly bored due to an injury. I always thought it would be cool to host a freeride event that was a little different from the usual race or competition. In the Czech Republic, a place I’m lucky enough to call home, there are many exciting public events, but none of them really represent what I really like about cycling: nature, a group of friends, a few worthy features to ride and kilometers of atmosphere. I can’t go any further without mentioning the inspiration I received from Yoann Barelli and Steve Vanderhoek’s original “Tour de Gnar”, thank you Steve and Yoann! So I used the creativity of our language and named the event “Tůr Je(De) Gnar”, which could be translated as “Cow rides Gnar”. We wanted to have a slightly more relaxed schedule, plus there aren’t that many huge features and varied terrain in the Czech Republic. With that we started to design the program for a real day trip with your friends who ride some challenging stuff but don’t have to exert themselves for a specific moment to have a chance to say something. I knew that I wanted to invite experienced freeriders who know what it means to compete and don’t blindly leave their comfort zone.

The sites were already prepared as I had been wanting to take some pictures of them since spring (a big thank you to the excavators who helped me build them, especially Jirka, Gargamel and Baba). I went for a beer with my cameraman friend, who was also excited to film the whole thing and put together a group of filmers and drone operators. Plus, call a few photographers and you’ll have a recipe for an unforgettable day.

In the end, it took a month of preparation and a sleepless night of pouring rain the night before the event to get started. It’s Saturday morning and 32 shredders meet in a parking lot, everyone gets stickers and t-shirts to make it official, and we head to the first riding area.


The drivers came from all corners of our country. Photo: @Kraliqe

It is a freeride zone, ideal for carving turns in steep, gravelly forest and with a sufficiently large road gap. Everyone already loves riding and it’s nice and relaxing to get going in the morning. After introducing a lip at the beginning, everyone starts sending it faster and that also brings the first loss (get well soon, Martin). After about an hour of shredding and hiking back to the summit, everyone heads to the Road Gap sector.

Earn the rounds. Rada Kulhavy and Vita push their rigs to the beginning of Zone 1. Photo: @marsal.adam
Dochees opens the zone. Photo: @marsal.adam
Martin Krejci keeps the speed on the train. Photo: @marsal.adam
Maaca carves. Photo: @kraliqe
Martin Ptacnik goes down hard. Photo: @marsal.adam

It is a stepdown with a proper lip for takeoff and is about 10m out and 4m down to get you comfortable when landing. The run-in is a technical turn, which is also a bit damp after the overnight rain, but that doesn’t stop Studnopes from sending first. The rest of the group gets easily inspired and after a little more maintenance on the curve leading up to it the session gets nice and wild. Whips, tabels, t-bogs, a few brave sui-s from Matous and Moudras, everyone is there again and again. Until Seb puts the session on hold by coming way short and hitting the deck hard. Luckily he’s a tough guy too, so he’ll be riding again soon, but both the bones and the seatstays need some time to recover.

Studnopes opens the gap, he then brought in a lot of style. Photo: @kraliqe
Seb is too small and goes down pretty hard.  Photo: @kraliqe
Seb is too small and goes down pretty hard. Photo: @kraliqe
David Cila extends the T-Bog. Photo: @marsal.adam

After a quick snack, we move our camp to “Matějova plotna”, a site that opened a few years ago but was optimized for more exciting rides on this occasion. The name commemorates the birthday of Bamboo’s son, who was born the day before the plate was opened. It is a sequence of 2m high rock slabs leading to a narrow ledge where you cannot stop and straight into another 8m sheer rock face. The runout itself is not that easy. You have two options: one offers a range of compression and the other offers a cheeky drop that’s difficult to adjust at the speed you’re coming off the record. And if that’s not enough fun for the most experienced riders, we also built a lipline so you can jump into the bottom plate. It wasn’t long before Matej opened up the A-line, while still opting for the sketchier run-out of props that were all too crazy for him. Suddenly it seems like everyone is sliding into the bottom plate or ending up and things go a little crazy. The A-line had a few more creative attempts, but unfortunately it also took its toll on Domink’s bike, which was compressed far too much during the run-out. Gargamel also fell during the runout, luckily without any serious injuries other than a broken phone. Then David finds a super straight and by far sketchiest entry into the A-line. Everyone holds their breath, but he holds himself together and easily takes the throne on the plate. What a session again! We pack up tools, broken bikes and everything else and head to the third and final location of the day.

The Matej plate in all its glory. @kraliqe
The handle here is exactly what you want. @kraliqe
Dominik Puffer doesn’t hesitate and jumps into the plate. @kraliqe
Matous Mlejnek fills the gap on the A-line. @marsal.adam
Moudras and A-line gap from different perspective @kraliqe
Dochee’s front wheel balances on the plate. @kraliqe
Pushing is what gets you up and Baba knows that. @kraliqe

The majority of riders use the shuttle to get to third place. Many experienced enduro riders use the self-propelled shuttle to get there. The third and final point is a ravine deep in the clay forest nearby. The camera crew and photographers are all prepared and waiting for the shredders to arrive. The Kosnar Gorge is way too much fun, but once again a terrible hike. We can see that the boys love it, but fatigue sets in and also claims the sacrifice of Vita, who escapes unscathed in the end. The hip at the bottom of the gully gets its first cracks and clay flies everywhere as the boys push lap after lap into the depths.


Pushing the gutter up was no problem. What do you think, Frenk? @kraliqe


Tree bong manufactured by Honza Sramek. @marsal.adam


Martin Krejci brings all his skills into the gorge. @kraliqe


Jakub Riha and his sharp focus on the next corner. @kraliqe


Dzi sets the table. Photo: @kraliqe

We call it a day when the sun goes down, it gets dark, and the boys get tired.


It was a big day. But nothing beats that smile! Photo: @kraliqe

@the_real_benben on the way to the base. Photo: @kraliqe

Time to head to Potepli base, where beer and beef await you. All the drivers discuss over a beer who gets the honor of the day, and this is how it turns out…

What a day! A big thank you to all the drivers who came and made this day an unforgettable experience.


Wooden trophies and the only thing. Photo: @slamdom

Awards went to:
Lord of the Gnar: Studnopes
Steeze Master: Moudras
Send to the Gnar: David Cila
The sketchiest sentence: Honza Sramek
Crash of the day: Seb Hluze
Ghost Prize: Baba
Honorable mentions: Matous Mlejnek, Dominik Puffer, Dzi


The ceremony. Photo @slamdom


That one, Studnopes! @slamdom


Congratulations, boy! Photo @slamdom

All knights:

Cila David
Cila Jiri
Dominik Buffer
Jakub Riha
Matey Visnovsky
Honza Sramek
Paja Tousek
Filip Drahokoupil
Seb Hluze
Radek Rada Kulhavy
Matous Mlejnek
Martin Ptacnik
Martin Krejci
Marek Petelik

Respect and praise to the guys behind the camera who risk everything to get the footage.
Dominik Slambora
Honza Kratochvil
Tomas Kral
Adam Marsal
Ondra Havlik
David Spacek

To all the sponsors who didn’t shy away from supporting this event.
Horse feathers
Krab cycles
Netopyr bike
Freeride Pyco

Apparently freeride isn’t dead yet, so see you next year!

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