FORTY8 | Freestyle MX Online Magazine | Rider Columns
Columns [Columns Archive]

The Snitz Column
written by Steve Sommerfeld


I had two really good international trips in December, the first was for 2 weeks in Indonesia doing shows and then off to New Zealand for the Red Bull FMX Battle. It all started out early in the month where I went back into the foam pit to get back into the Back Flip since my injury time. I did a few which weren't too bad but I had to pack my bags quickly and head off to Indonesia to do 2 shows for the Indonesian Powercross series which kicked off on December 12 with Australia's 2 brightest FMX stars Josh Sheehan and Clinton Moore. I also picked up a new sponsor at the same time with Motoz tyres. It's an Australian owned tyre company which is becoming pretty popular in Europe.

The shows went really well with the first round in the mountain town of Malang. There was a lot of promotional hype around the series so we had to do live radio interviews in Indonesian which isn't exactly an easy thing to do when you can't speak the language. There was initial problems such as protestors trying to stop the whole event, then the stadium owners wanted a US$200,000 bond that the grass wouldn't get torn from the racing and then the Indonesian Army who hired the equipment out worried that the loaders would get blown up from protestors. It all ended up working out with the Mayor of the town calling in a lot of favours and we got the job done. In return he invited us up to his home and then on the best trail ride I've ever had. It was a 2 hour trail ride up mountains with bamboo bridges, creek crossings all on these super cool KTM 450EXC-F's with Electric Start and Automatic Clutch. It took some mastering but we got it. We ended up finishing at a hot spring on top of a dormant volcano at night. Definitely one of the best days of my life.

After the second show in Semarang finished I headed straight to the holiday
island of Bali with my sponsor Seb from Valyside and both of our girlfriends
came over for a holiday which finished up on Christmas day. It was an awesome holiday, mountain biking near an active volcano, white water rafting and playing with monkeys and riding elephants. We finished up on Xmas day with a full day riding scooters through Bali. Almost no FMX could be as dangerous as riding the streets over there. There are basically no rules and we were doing 110k's down 40km/hr streets.

I then flew straight from Bali to New Zealand to compete in the Red Bull FMX
Battle. After about 48 hours in transit, I was feeling a little worse for wear
with massive jet lag and just a general lack of sleep. The Red Bull FMX Battle
was more of a choreographed show than a competition which hasn't been done in Australia or New Zealand. It was similar to X-Fighters with a head to head
format and the IFMXF show quality with the hot seat. The show opened with a
full battle with guerrilla style shooting while Kain Saul and I flew in a
helicopter to the event and then the show started. There is always a friendly
rivalry between the two close nations. It was a really tight competition all
the way through and Kain Saul was looking like the sure winner through practice and qualifying. In the end I took out 3rd place even while I had a pinched sciatic nerve and Nick Franklin managed to take out first place with an extra jump over Kain Saul.

So I finished up the big month of December by flying home just in time for New Years eve and some well earned sleep! I now have a week off before I head back to Indonesia for the rest of January for 3 more shows. Until then, take care.


back top