Interview: Brendan Fairclough on Red Bull Rampage, his washout World Cup season and 650b wheels

Brendan Fairclough‘s one of the most stylish and versatile riders out there – a World Cup downhiller who also looks totally at home down the dirt jumps or hitting a big freeride line – but 2012 just wasn’t his year. We caught up with the Scott11 rider to talk racing, Red Bull Rampage and 650b wheels.

So Brendan, with a new team and new bike you must have started the 2012 World Cup season with high hopes…

As far as the racing went, it was a bit of a washout. A few stupid injuries held me back and I just didn’t ever really get into the flow of it, which really sucked. But the stuff we did with the new [Scott] Gambler was an amazing success, and I think people like the look of it and like the idea of it and everything, so that’s been pretty cool.

… and then, at the end the season you went out to Utah for Red Bull Rampage and again, things didn’t quite go to plan…

Yeah, it’s just been one of those years. Everything was going so well, it was such an amazing event and such an amazing concept, and I literally can’t wait to go back out again. But it didn’t end how I’d expected.

So what exactly happened? It looked you were working on a really mental line…

Yeah, it was a really cool line [hit play below to see part of it in the latest episode of Life Behind Bars ~ ed]. I just landed about 6in too far to the right on a landing and landed on some soft dirt which flipped me over the bars. Literally 6in the other way and I’d have been fine. That ended my knee.

Source: Life Behind Bars: Crashes and Qualifiers at Red Bull Rampage – Episode 14 from Red Bull

I didn’t qualify in the first round so I went down and had a load of painkillers, got strapped up and went up for the second one. I managed to qualify with the second run but my knee was too messed up to carry on. I’ll definitely be back though. It’s an amazing event, and I’ve got some unfinished business to attend to!