Ryan Doyle / Ryan Gosling / Heavenâ€™s Basement / Neymar / Travis Rice / Tame Impala / Sebastian Vettel / Charli XCX
a beyond the ordinary magazine
Making A splash Watercolours: a new wave of NZ pop
Secrets of the cities The place hackers finding new ways to see the world
Breaking good D ow nl t he oad
t abl i s s u et e for
THE WORLD OF RED BULL
RYAN GOSLING How the Canadian actor got the indie cred and mainstream draw other movie stars would kill for
RED BULL CRASHED ICE Charting the ups and downs of the world’s foremost ice cross downhill skaters as the 2013 season begins amid the roar of Niagara Falls
AMERICAN DREAM Tom Abercrombie is a leading light of NZ basketball. In that position, hopes of playing in the NBA never die
COVER PHOTOGRAPHY: NIC STAVELEY PHOTOGRAPHY: GETTY IMAGES, NIC STAVELEY, RED BULL CRASHED ICE, FRANÇOIS-R. THEVENET
WELCOME The Red Bulletin prides itself on travelling to some of the remotest places on Earth in search of adventure, but when we went on an urban exploration with the place hackers, we found it at the centre of cities where hundreds of thousands of people pass by every day. Making more of a lone grand tour was freerunning ace Ryan Doyle. His diary of a wonders-of-the-world parkour trip makes for splendid reading. And then there is Bridge Day, ‘the Woodstock of BASE-jumping’, at which 450 enthusiasts of the giant leap head for a gorge in America and take the plunge at the world’s largest event of its kind. Enjoy the issue.
TRULY OFF-PISTE Lovers of great snow head for the heliskiing at Russia’s eastern edge, with an eye on rumbling volcanoes and frozen hair
THE WORLD OF RED BULL
TOP THREE A round table with a trio of filmmaker-adventurers whose 3D movies are the bar-raisers for sports action documentaries
HELMUT MARKO The Red Bull Racing guru reveals what makes Sebastian Vettel so special, and what’s next for F1
CHARLI XCX The ’90s revival princess on purveying angel pop, balancing on big shoes and telling Coldplay what to do
Tablet App Ryan Doyle, Sébastien Ogier, Place Hackers, Heaven’s Basement and Neymar in action on video.
Free for Android & iPad
THE SECRET SIGHTSEERS Unknown areas above, around and below our cities are being uncovered and reclaimed by groups of fearless urban explorers. The Red Bulletin joins one such crew to find out how – and why – they do it
08 The month’s best images 14 Bullevard: sport, culture and more 17 Me & My Body 20 Meet the ice-music maker 22 Kit Evolution 26 Basketball free-throw physics 28 Lucky Numbers
PHOTOGRAPHY: GUNNAR KNECHTEL, MARIA ZIEGELBÖCK, ADVENTUREWORLDWIDE.NET
The Red Bulletin
THE WORLD OF RED BULL
January four hours to the Great Wall of China so I could do backflips along it ”
PARKOUR ON TOUR Freerunner Ryan Doyle toured world wonders, but instead of standing in front of landmarks, he got on them and did what he does best
86 TRAINING WITH THE PROS
There’s no going backwards when it comes to being a forward: goal-happy Brazilian striker Neymar reveals his health-and-fitness formula
70 HARD ROCK LIFE
Four young Brits are struggling to make their mark in heavy metal... and then Papa Roach takes them on tour. Get down to Heaven’s Basement
Body & Mind 84
GET THE GEAR
IN ACTION What underwater Global goings-on photographer Ernst Koschier needs to 96 SAVE THE DATE shoot with the fishes Events for the diary
88 BAND WATCH
OVER THE EDGE
Once a year, 450 BASE-jumpers dive from a bridge over a gorge in America’s Appalachian mountains. Veterans use a human catapult. Rookies sit quivering back in the hotel. Welcome to Bridge Day
Auckland’s Chelsea Jade explores pop songwriting under the pseudonym, Watercolours
Russell Brown knows what he likes, but is it art?
A glamorous club, an exotic cocktail, a midnight snack, the best in music and much more – we’ve got everything you need to get you through ’til dawn
PHOTOGRAPHY: SEBASTIAN MARKO/RED BULL CONTENT POOL, PHILIP PLATZER, GETTY IMAGES, JULIE GLASSBERG
“ We drove
STAGE Jim Beam Homegrown Odlins Plaza
2 March - Wellington Waterfront
A Chemistry Experiment | Cairo Knife Fight | All My Brothers | DJ Sir-Vere's Kareoke Machine ft. Che Fu, PNC & K One | Illegal Sound Clash | The Babysitters Circus | Weird Together | The Peacekeepers | DJ Redbird
www.homegrown.net.nz tickets $95+bf
TE TO N PA S S , U SA
PRIVATE IDAHO As photographer Mark Fisher explains, you need three essential elements to capture an image like this: a clear sky, long exposure time and an early start. A really early start. While shooting a ski tour in eastern Idaho, these things came together. “I love that you can see the moon in the distance,” says Fisher, “and how the headlamps paint the trees with light.” It’s untouched landscapes like this that bring snowboarders and skiers from around the world to these mountains. www.fishercreative.com Photography: Mark Fisher
LI E N Z , AU STR IA
His ascent of the Cerro Torre in Patagonia may have earned him a nomination for the 2012 National Geographic Adventurer of the Year award, but free climber David Lama hasn’t rested on his laurels. Due to its high-risk nature, he’s dubbed his latest route, in the Lienzer Dolomites, ‘Safety Discussion’. Together with climbing partner Peter Ortner, Lama set first ascent using only six bolts on 10 climbs at the very top end of the difficulty scale. Vote for Lama as Adventurer of the Year: www.david-lama.com Photography: ASP Red Bull/Florian Klingler
O E R LI KO N , SW IT Z E R L AN D
IN THE FRAME
Pictures of skaters risking life and limb are 10 a penny, but this shot of Swiss boarding virtuoso Luc Kämpfen shows a true master at work. The picture, taken by Markus Schweingruber, was a favourite in the Wings category at the most recent Red Bull Illume, the world’s premiere action and adventure sports photography competition. This year’s edition has just opened and you can submit your own pictures until April 30. For further info check www.redbullillume.com Photography: Markus Schweingruber
Bullevard Sport and culture on the quick
How Very English Where else would sport’s most unusual world champs take place?
WORLD PEASHOOTING CHAMPIONSHIP, WITCHAM Five shots through a blowgun at a target 12ft away. Maple peas, nice and round, are preferred.
WORLD TOE WRESTLING CHAMPIONSHIP, ASHBOURNE In which the idea is to push your opponent‘s foot off the contest board by only using the big piggy.
HEROES ZERO IN Once again targeting box-office bonanzas: the super-men and witchy women of the blockbusters shaping 2013 at the movies Superheroism is still a winning formula for movie success. Last year, Avengers Assemble and The Dark Knight Rises each raked in over US$1 billion at the global box office. In 2013, Robert Downey Jr is once more slipping into his armour (Iron Man 3, in cinemas worldwide from April), Chris Hemsworth again swings his hammer (Thor: The Dark World, November) and Superman is back with a new face, that of Henry Cavill (Man Of Steel, June). But the comic-book heroes can expect tough competition from the realm of fantasy. There’s James Franco as the Wizard of Oz (Oz: The Great And Powerful, March) battling it out with witches Mila Kunis and Rachel Weisz, before Peter Jackson once more sends his hobbits back on the road (The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, December). Out in space, director JJ Abrams oversees the return of Chris Pine as Captain Kirk (Star Trek Into Darkness, May). www.imdb.com
WORM CHARMING CHAMPIONSHIP, WILLASTON Using vibration (made by tools, or even music) who can lure the most worms to the surface?
Three men and a brittle lady: Superman, Iron Man, Thor and The Wicked Witch of the West
EVERY SHOT ON TARGET
FOLDING BIKE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP, OXFORDSHIRE After a Le Mans-esque standing start riders, wearing collar and tie, race over an 8-mile course.
Have you taken a picture with a Red Bull flavour? Email it to us at: firstname.lastname@example.org Every month we print a selection, with our favourite pic awarded a limited-edition Sigg bottle. Tough, functional and well-suited to sport, it features The Red Bulletin logo.
Barbados The line in the left hand provides the necessary pull; the can in the right gives an essential push. Christopher Pilgrim
This is trap
A three-stop tour of a hot musical genre
Turski, or not to ski: that is the question
PHOTOGRAPHY: REX FEATURES (3), ACTION IMAGES, WARNER BROS, PICTUREDESK.COM (2), DISNEY/PLANET PHOTOS, GETTY IMAGES, GRAEME MURRAY/RED BULL CONTENT POOL, MAGNUS HASTINGS, LIONSGATE FILMS
D-Day at the X Games Four X Games gold in a row? No woman has ever managed it (only Shaun White, of course, has done it in the men’s competition). Kaya Turski, a Canadian Kaya Turski freeskier, has already fulfilled a very important pre-condition for title number four, having picked up the last three slopestyle golds. “The first, in 2010, is my favourite,” says the 24-year-old. “After getting bronze in 2009 it was all I thought about for a year.” The closest? “The third, in 2012. A trick went completely wrong on the first two runs. For the third run, I was dead last at the start and thought, ‘OK, you can’t win every time, just do your best.’ So that’s what I did and, hey, gold!” Is anything better than gold? “My parents. They make the X Games special for me. They’ve been to every single one and I swear they get at least as worked up as I do. I can’t even imagine doing X Games without my parents.” www.kayaturski.com
BAAUER, HARLEM SHAKE The dubstep bass goes deep, the hip-hop beats bounce: this hit has put the 23-yearold producer on the trap throne.
MAJOR LAZER, ORIGINAL DON (FLOSSTRADAMUS REMIX) This remix set off the whole trap hype. Diplo, in his Major Lazer guise, is a major force behind the genre.
TNGHT, TNGHT Red Bull Music Academy alumni Hudson Mohawke and Lunice have produced the cleverest, heaviest trap track so far.
TOUGH GAL Jaimie Alexander is carving out a niche as one of those rare blooms of cinema: the articulate action movie beauty. Here she shoots off about boys, girls and the sharp end of antiquity American actress Alexander, 28, is mixing it with the big boys. After coming to prominence in the sci-fi TV show Kyle XY, in 2013 she will star alongside Chris Hemsworth in the Thor sequel, reprising her role as Sif, and with Arnold Schwarzenegger in The Last Stand, in which Ahnuld plays a former LAPD cop battling the Mexican Mafia. What’s it like being on the set of an action movie? It’s quite a boys’ club, but I’m used to it. I grew up with four brothers. I read comics and played with action figures, and then in school I was always in the wrestling team.
Do you get a lot of fan mail from young men? Sure, but also a lot from young women, who identify with my role in Thor. That means a lot to me. Can you use a weapon? The knife. I’m not a huge gun person. In a knife fight, you’re right up close with your opponent. I like that; it’s almost like a dance. It sounds frightening! I collect knives. I always buy one at a flea market in whatever city I’m filming in. Large, antique knives with beautiful engraving. Thankfully I’ve never had to use one in real life. The Last Stand is in cinemas worldwide from January 18
Upright citizen: Jaimie Alexander in The Last Stand
WE HAVE A WINNER!
Belfast Strong winds and thick mud gave the 400 mountain bikers in Red Bull Foxhunt plenty to contend with. Predrag Vuckovic
Manfeild The smoke may now have cleared, but there’s plenty of tyre rubber left at the Manfeild Park Raceway in New Zealand. Andrew Mills
Montpellier Get up to get down, in France: the Battle of the Year, known as the ‘world cup of breakdancing’, did not disappoint. Markus Berger 15
B U L L E VA R D
Open Studio Working out of a pop-up studio in the front window of Auckland’s Q Theatre was a unique experience for artist Erin Forsyth. “It’s the first time I’ve worked to a deadline in a public space,” says Forsyth. Red Bull Pop Life gave passers-by and internet viewers a peek into the creative process of six artists. Given 15 hours to paint 10 canvases and a Red Bull fridge, Forsyth produced a series of “zombie western” paintings. “I thought it would be a bit loose and crazy, but it was eye-opening in terms of the reality of making work and how long it actually takes. It was more performance art than painting.” www.redbull.co.nz Public art: Erin Forsyth
Tropfest, the world’s largest short film festival, turns 21 this year and Kiwi film fans have extra reason to celebrate, as it reaches New Zealand for the first time. John Polson, who organised the first Tropfest in a Sydney café in 1993, describes it as “an alternative to Hollywood blockbusters”. Several Australasian directors and actors first appeared at Tropfest, including Avatar star Sam Worthington. “What you get to see is the best emerging short filmmakers, some of whom will go on to make major movies later in their careers,” says Suzanne Porter, of Tropfest NZ. The selection of shorts will be screened at a free event in New Plymouth on January 27. www.tropfest.co.nz
“It’s like a casino for kids,” says a spectator at the VEX Robotics Asia-Pacific Championship, captivated by the excitement, bright lights and buzzing noise of the robots. Instead of roulette and blackjack, however, the game, at the TelstraClear Events Centre in Auckland, is Sack Attack. “We prefer to call it Beanbag Battle,” says Chris Hamling, the championships’ organiser. “When the name was announced, kids around the world who participate in VEX Robotics groaned simultaneously.” VEX Robotics challenges schoolchildren to build a robot to compete in a new game announced every April. Sack Attack is played on a 12ft x 12ft foam mat. Students control their robots with the goal to collect as many bean bags as possible in a two-minute period. “The kids and their teachers get very passionate,” says Hamling. “Go and watch rugby, and the players and coaches get excited: this is no different. This is a sport as much as a geek-fest.” It’s a sport New Zealand has dominated recently, winning the world title four years in a row. After Sack Attack, two teams – Free Range Robotics, a group of home-school students from the North Shore in Auckland, and Avondale College – qualified for the world championships in California in April. Other category winners going to California are Otumoetai College, ACG Strathallan and Kristin School. www.vexrobotics.co.nz
San Francisco The Red Bull Flugtag Californauts team, with track star and competition judge Alysia Montaño. Christian Pondella
Cape Town Resolve is as vital as running shoes at Red Bull LionHeart, a race in knock-out rounds up and down Lions Head mountain. Craig Kolesky
WORDS: ROBERT TIGHE. PHOTOGRAPHY: RED BULL NEWZEALAND, TROPFEST, KIWIBOTS
hosted regal riding from Matti Lehikoinen at Red Bull Ride the Palace. David Robinson
Five teams of New Zealand ’bot-builders are heading to the ‘robot world championships’ in California
Film fans at last year’s Tropfest
Sofia Bulgaria’s National Palace of Culture
Rise of the machines: Kiwi robots are world-beaters
B U L L E VA R D
ME AND MY BODY
1 MID-RACE BUZZ
On day five of last year’s Dakar Rally, a bee flew into my ear. It was the most painful thing I’ve ever experienced, and I was terrified, as I didn’t know what had happened. A doctor came and pulled it out, and I managed to finish the stage. But man, it was a big bee! I still have it at home in a jar.
The 33-year-old motocross champion from the UAE has battled breaks, bruises and bees to get to the top www.redbull.com
5 SET THE RIGHT ONE IN
On the 2012 Dakar Rally, I crashed and fell down a hole, breaking my right hand and dislocating my right shoulder, which meant four operations and physio for months. I was the first Emirati to compete there and, inshallah, I’ll be back one day to finish.
2 BACK-END BUSINESS
WORDS: RUTH MORGAN. PHOTOGRAPHY: NAIM CHIDIAC
4 LAST LEG
I’ve broken my nose, numerous ribs and my left forearm very badly; my hand was literally hanging off my arm… In fact, my right leg is the only part of me to have survived unscathed. And I’m touching wood as I say that.
Mohammed Balooshi is in injury-free action on The Red Bulletin tablet app. Download it now for free
I broke my coccyx and compacted four vertebrae coming off my bike in 2008. I couldn’t sit or lie down for months. But I won a local championship final two weeks after the accident – standing up on my bike the whole way.
3 BREAKING BAD
In 2009 I overshot a triple jump at a race in the UAE. My left ankle took the force of the impact and shattered into eight pieces. One piece of bone went up into my shin and I needed an operation. The surgeon put in metal pins to reconstruct xxxxxxxxEt, velitplates utpat.and Uptat. Ommy nulla corem and nowesto it works again. quamit,zzriliquis od dofine consed enim nibh
B U L L E VA R D
HARD & FAST
Top performers and winning ways from around the globe
British snowboarder Aimee Fuller had a promising start to the TTR World Snowboard Tour as she retained her title at the O’Neill Pleasure Jam in Schladming, Austria.
Three wins (two downhill, one Super-G) gave US skier Lindsey Vonn a second consecutive World Cup hat-trick at Lake Louise in Canada.
Italian golfer Matteo Manassero, 19, became the first teenager to win three European Tour events.
On the podium (from left): Samuel Hübinette, Matt Powers and Dan Woolhouse
SLIDE RULED Red Bull Drift Shifters wowed the crowds on its debut in downtown Auckland. First New Zealand… now the world? Matt Powers from the USA may have won the first-ever Red Bull Drift Shifters, but it was the man with the plan, Kiwi driver ‘Mad’ Mike Whiddett, who had the biggest smile on his face after the event. Whiddett’s pinball-inspired course pushed a dozen drivers to their limits in a display of precision car control in front of 10,000 excited fans. His next move, on the back of this success, is to take the format worldwide. : Was finishing fourth in your own event disappointing? : Not at all. I’m overwhelmed. I’m just stoked that so many people turned up. It was badass. How does Red Bull Drift Shifters differ from other street racing events? Drivers are judged on speed, angle of approach and proximity to the perimeter wall, the same as in regular drift events. The difference here is that they can freestyle their way around the course, taking whatever route they like. So it’s 50-50, technical and creative? In drifting, as in any judged sport, there’s always politics and I wanted to eliminate human error. The proximity sensors on the obstacles and the wall record a car’s speed and accuracy, leading to a points calculation in real time, just like on a real pinball machine. What’s next for Drift Shifters? We want to bring this to the streets of San Francisco, to Tokyo or Dubai. That’s the dream. www.redbull.co.nz
WORDS: ROBERT TIGHE. PHOTOGRAPHY: GRAEME MURRAY (2), BEWEGTEZEITEN.DE, ROLAND HASCHKA/QPARKS, GETTY IMAGES (2). ILLUSTRATION: DIETMAR KAINRATH
“I’m the luckiest man in the world,” said German wakeboarder Frederic von Osten after winning the World Cable Championships in the Philippines.
B U L L E VA R D
Cold play: the man who invented ice music
This Norwegian makes instruments out of nothing but ice, and extends an invitation to a festival of frosty soundscapes Born May 4, 1964, Geilo, Norway Pre-Ice Age Isungset was a percussionist with Norwegian jazz band Orleysa, and played with saxophonist Karl Seglem in a trio called Utla before – yes! – putting that all on ice. The Rider The must-list for the musician’s overseas concerts: blocks of ice of various sizes, a refrigerated workspace, an electric chainsaw. He also takes Norwegian ice along with him. If You Only Buy One… Winter Songs (All Ice Music, 2010)
Every January, Terje Isungset invites jazz musicians from all over the world to his home town of Geilo, Norway, to join in with his unique music show: the openair Ice Music Festival. All the instruments – horns, cellos, xylophones and many others – are made from ice that he carves from a small lake near the town. : When did you first get the idea for this? : It was 1999. I had been commissioned to perform a concert in a frozen waterfall. I designed instruments for the concert, made of stone, wood and ice, and I haven’t been able to get the sound the ice made out of my head ever since. What is it about the sound of ice that fascinates you? The low frequencies, I find it very meditative and warm. There’s no
other music like it. Nothing comes close to the sound the ice makes. What ice sounds best? River and lake ice: the clearer, the better. Artificial ice can’t compete from the sound point of view. How are the instruments made? Blocks are cut from the ice, using a chainsaw, and then they’re fashioned with simple knives. What are the ideal conditions? No wind, and -20°C. If it rains, the ice doesn’t sound at all. Too warm, it melts. We organise the festival for when there’s a full moon in January, as that’s when it’s coldest. Do instruments really melt during performances? Yes, they melt, or break, which is why it’s important for ice musicians to be able to improvise. Normal instruments are predictable; ice instruments aren’t. What instruments do you make? Wind, percussion and string
instruments. Apart from the strings and the machine head [the tuner], everything is made of ice. Can they be tuned normally? Yes. It’s helpful when you’re working with singers, and you’re performing songs composed specifically for ice instruments. The wind instruments constantly detune live, in any case. As soon as you blow into a horn, the bell gets bigger. Are they hard to make? A xylophone takes five hours to make. The smaller the parts of an instrument, the finickier it is. The smallest are only 5mm in size, and break very easily. Where do you store the instruments during the festival? In igloos, because of their constant internal temperature. Igloos are a perfect place to make the instruments, too, because they’re quiet. You can hear your own heartbeat. What happens to your instruments after the concert? We give them to the audience and say, “Drink them.” Ice Music Festival: January 24-27, Geilo, Norway: www.icefestival.no
WORDS: FLORIAN OBKIRCHER. PHOTOGRAPHY: DDP
MUSIC, IN FREEZE-FOUR TIME
THBEULLETIN RED ! E G A P FAN
ARY? N I D R O A R T TO B E E X T N LLETIN A U W B D O S E L R / A M U O O DO Y CEBOOK.C A .F W W W O J UST G O T E A FAN! M O C E B D N A
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The lack of steel edges (only introduced in 1928) combined with unsteady boot binding, had a direct impact on skiing methodology: abrupt changes of direction weren’t how things were done back then. It was more a gentle swing.
The relationship between ski and ski boot is a bedrock of winter sports, and one that has changed in as many ways as it has stayed the same
In the late 19th century, regular shoemakers made ski boots, which were alpine boots made suitable for skiing using more rigid leather, a sole with several layers of stitching and metal fittings where the boots met the binding on the skis.
Thonet’s wood-bending technology, which was originally developed to make chairs, also came in handy when making sporting equipment.
c. 1899 THONET SKIS; LEATHER SKI BOOTS In 1852, German cabinet-maker Michael Thonet was awarded a patent for a technique “to give wood any curve or shape through cutting and regluing”. Later, he received another patent for a system of bending wood using steam. His company, which is still famous around the world today for its furniture, used the technology to produce sporting equipment, such as sledges, tennis racquets and skis. The maker of the boot is unknown. www.thonet.com
PHOTOGRAPHY: KURT KEINRATH
Solid wood skis, made of beech or ash, were pre-stressed to give them better manoeuvrability. Skis made from glued layers of wood appeared in 1900; those made by gluing plastic and wood layers together made their debut in 1946.
The boot is tailored exactly to the foot at a fitting. A special high-tech polymer makes for improved temperature stability (when compared to regular plastics) and vibration absorption.
With a simple flick of the lever mechanism, this hybrid ski turns from a cross-country freeride rocker into a downhill racer, capable long, aggressive, sweeps.
IN THE LAYERS
The core of the ski is still made of wood. Stretched over it is an outer layer of superlight, super-strong aluminium alloy, strengthened with a layer of carbon fibre.
Positive pre-stressing on the wide blade means that this rocker ski floats along better on powdery snow.
2013 FISCHER HYBRID 7.0 SKI; FISCHER VACUUM BOOT The old wooden skis had a flat bottom. As skiing evolved, so did the shape of the ski, so that skis were classified as flat, rocker (with a convex cross-section) or camber (concave cross-section). Camber is good for tight turns on hard snow, and requires greater skill on the part of the skier; rocker is best for wider turns, and gives greater stability. Hybrid skis have variously shaped areas for greater all-round performance. wwww.fischersports.com
B U L L E VA R D
WHERE’S YOUR HEAD AT?
Hailed as the best actor of his generation, the Canadian has both the indie cred and the mainstream draw that most movie stars would kill for. Here’s how he did it
HI S NA ME ME AN S ‘LI TTLE KI NG , YO UN G GO OS E’
Said Ryan Gosling, in 200 7: “It’s not like people looked at me and though t, ‘Here’s a movie star.’” Born to Mormon parents in London, Ontario, on November 12, 1980, as a youngster he was thrown out of school for throwing knives like Rambo, took Ritalin for ADHD and worked in his uncle’s Elvis tribute act. Acting and ball et (which he still practises) became his passions.
Gosling is that rare movie star who is both a really good actor and really good looking. His handsomeness has led to several internet shrines, with pictures often captioned with a slogan beginning “Hey Girl” and going on to dispense unofficial Goslingisms. One site has spawned a book, Feminist Ryan Gosling: Feminist Theory From Your Favorite Movie Dude.
THE END IS NIG H (ISH )
HEY MICKE Y!
Aged 12, he was cast in kids TV variety show The Mickey Mouse Club. This entailed leaving Canada for America, where he lived with the family of fellow Mouseketeer Justin Timberlake; Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera were also on the show then. More junior acting roles followed, including the star turn in Young Hercules. Fledgling Gosling clips abound online.
Playing a drug-addicted teacher in Half Nelson in 2006 secured Gosling a Best Actor Oscar nomination. Two more films followed, then a three-year hiatus during which he bought and renovated Tagine, a Moroccan restaurant in Beverly Hills. He has a further, more permanent, break planned. “If I’m still acting at 46,” he told The Daily Telegraph in September 2011, “I’ll be surprised.”
IN DI E SE NS IB LE
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A GIR L AND A GUN
AGAIN ST/WITH TYPE
After small roles in big movies, and vice versa, Gosling met Hollywood head-on three times in 2011 with comedy Crazy, Stupid, Love, George Clooney-directed The Ides Of March and Drive, in which he played a Tinseltown stunt driver mixed up with crime. In this year’s The Place Beyond The Pines, he’s a motorcycle stuntman and new dad mixed up with crime. Totally different.
ster Squad Out worldwide from this month, Gang in the vein flick ers mobb ’n’ is a vintage-style cops ial. Gosling ident Conf LA and bles ucha Unto The of wanna take is the squad’s ladykilling crackshot. “You st woman of hone an make and this all from away me “No ma’am,” me?” says Emma Stone, vamping it up. take you to bed.” to g hopin just was “I ng, Gosli ts retor gangstersquad.warnerbros.com
WORDS: PAUL WILSON. ILLUSTRATION: LIE-INS AND TIGERS
YOU WIN SOM E…
“That’s the guy from The Notebook!” gasps the girl videoing Gosling using his undeniable charms to break up a heated argument on a New York stree t back in 2011. In that film, a 2004 Hollywood weepy, the same charms help Gosling to win over the girl. However in Blue Valentine, a 2010 indie weepy, those charms are of no help to him whatsoever.
THDE N I T E L L U RE B ! P P A EY E-
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www.redbulletin.com Find a list of all compatible Android devices at www.redbulletin.com
The aim game: Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo at the free throw line
B U L L E VA R D
A free throw is, on paper, basketball’s easiest shot. So why do so many fail. Our sports scientist has it figured out
ILLUSTRATION: MANDY FISCHER. PHOTOGRAPHY: ANDREW D. BERNSTEIN/GETTY IMAGES
JOURNEY INTO SPACE “Technique plus nerves of steel are what’s needed when a professional basketball player takes a free throw,” says physicist and sports scientist Dr Martin Apolin of the Physics Faculty of the University of Vienna. “In the NBA, most players make 75 per cent of their free-throw attempts, although Boston Celtics star Rajon Rondo has a far lower average percentage. The question is: what launch angle offers Rondo the greatest likelihood of the ball meeting its target? “In the NBA, the ball has a diameter of 23.9cm (db) and the inside ring of the basket is 45cm (da). Were the ball to fall through the middle of the ring, there would be 11cm of space either side of the ball. But there is a lowest angle under which the ball must approach for it to pass through the basket without touching the sides. This can be calculated as sinβ = db/da bzw. β = arcsin (db/da) – in our example the angle is around 32° (fig 1). “The trajectory of the ball can be determined with the equation y = –gx²/(2v²0 cos²α) + x tanα + h0, in which g is the acceleration due to gravity (9.81m/s²), v0 the launch velocity (m/s), α the launch angle, x and y the horizontal and vertical components (m) and h0 the launch height (m). The basket hangs at 3.05m, the free throw line is 4.19m from the centre and Rondo is 1.85m tall, so we can estimate the ball’s centre of gravity at launch at 2.20m. LORD OF THE RING “Solving the above equation for v, gives the correlation between launch velocity and launch angle (fig 2). Here we assume that Rondo will throw the ball through the centre of the ring. For the angle of approach to be greater than 32° and for the ball to pass directly through the basket, the launch angle α must be at least 47°. If the approach is steeper, then Rondo must launch the ball significantly faster, which will generate inaccuracy. “By what extent could Rondo increase or decrease steepness with the same velocity without touching the ring? This can be solved through simulations in which the angle is modified until the ball hits the ring. Fig 3 shows this: at around 47° Rondo has no room for deviation. Between 48° and 53° there is a ‘window’, which allows an angle inaccuracy of 6-8°. If the throw is steeper, the allowable inaccuracy drops severely, to as low as 2°. “Fortunately, the ‘window’ falls in the range of minimum velocity. Which is handy, because when Rondo throws at a minimum angle of 47° and with the least exertion, he automatically reaches the angular range with the greatest allowable variation. These observations are also applicable to taller players who struggle with free throws, although the launch angle needs adjusting downwards.” www.bostonceltics.com
B U L L E VA R D
Defeat leads to defeat, triumph follows triumph. Momentum is one of sport’s most mysterious elements – and these are its most momentous occurrences
The 1981 World Open in Toronto ushered in a new era in squash: the final saw 17-year-old Jahangir Khan beating Australian Geoff Hunt, who had been the sport’s dominant force throughout the 1970s. The youngest winner in the history of the tournament clearly developed a taste for victory. In the ensuing five years and eight months the Pakistani won 555 games in a row, the longest winning stretch in professional sports.
Khan’s record may well be threatened by Dutchwoman Esther Vergeer, who has been at the top of the women’s world wheelchair tennis rankings since 1999, and has, at the time of going to press, played 470 undefeated matches. Vergeer has won all 21 Grand Slam tournaments she has entered, and won them resoundingly. In her last eight Slam finals, the seven-time Paralympics gold medallist has bagged the ‘double bagel’ – a 6-0, 6-0 win – a total of six times.
The Chicago Cubs are the only team in Major League Baseball to go more than 100 years without winning the World Series: they last got lucky in 1908. The Cubbies can nonetheless take pride in one positive record. In 1935, they won 21 games in a row – the longest winning streak ever in MLB, which, sadly, was only enough to get them to the World Series, which they lost 4-2 to the Detroit Tigers.
Patience was a virtue for the first fans of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFL. They lost all 14 of their matches during their debut season in 1976, and in the following year they went on to lose their opening 12 games. The team became the butt of jokes for every sports fan and talk show host in America before salvation finally arrived in their 27th game: a 33-14 win at the New Orleans Saints.
There are all-time great NBA stars, such as Dennis Rodman, Wilt Chamberlain and Shaquille O’Neal, who are hardly heroes of the free throw line, but Chris Dudley trumps the lot. In 1990, playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers and the New Jersey Nets, the centre fumbled 17 of his 18 free throws, 13 of them in a row, which ‘surpassed’ Chamberlain’s dirty dozen. Particularly embarrassing was an ‘air ball’, which didn’t even hit the board. Dudley’s explanation? “I just had too much going through my head.”
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
At the 1991 Las Vegas Invitational, Chip Beck played the round of his life, with 59 strokes. There have only been 12 scores of 59, of which Beck’s was the second, and one of 58, in the history of major tour tournament golf. In 1997 and 1998, the American missed the cut in 46 consecutive tournaments. He threw in the towel and took a job in insurance sales, before the golf coach Jim Suttie convinced him to pick up the clubs again. Today, Beck, 56, has a successful career on the PGA Champions Tour.
WORDS: ULRICH CORAZZA. PHOTOGRAPHY: GETTY IMAGES (5), PICTUREDESK.COM, DIGITALCITIZEN.CA
T R O P P U S PROUD TO
T T E D D I H W E K I M D A M AND
THE SECRET SIGHTSEERS Unknown areas above, around and below our cities are being uncovered and reclaimed by groups of fearless urban explorers. The Red Bulletin joins one such crew to find out how – and why – they do it
London, UK THE SHARD Perhaps one of the most notorious and impressive ‘place hacks’ of recent times is the London Consolidation Crew’s infiltration of London’s Shard skyscraper in April 2012. “It was pretty daunting,” says Otter, photographer and explorer with Silent UK. “I struggle climbing 30-floor buildings, but over 72 with an additional crane? The mind was willing, but the body weak.” Almost half an hour of stairwells later, they reached the summit and scaled the rooftop crane. Their reward? The most exclusive and breathtaking view of London. Photograph: Bradley L Garrett/ www.placehacking.co.uk
When you look suspicious, people get suspicious.” With confident strides belying jangling nerves and the first turbos of adrenalin, the exploration team crosses the busy street towards a tall barbed-wire fence at the end of a cracked driveway. The route veers off the path and disappears into the nearby undergrowth. Darting into the bushes, a gap becomes visible at ground level behind a dense thicket. The team quickly passes through the makeshift entry point and breaks cover. One set of decrepit iron steps later, and the vulnerable open spaces of the yard are replaced by the eerie, cool silence of the decommissioned labelling plant. Inside the building (above), which ceased to exist as a business in a Brussels suburb some five years ago, evidence of infiltration is everywhere. “Someone has always been there before you; nothing is ‘exploration’ in the sense of finding something undiscovered by humanity,” says Koen L, this expedition’s leader, shining his Maglite on a collection of beer bottles on top of a smashed control desk. “But we all take different experiences away with us.” This is the essence of urban exploration: marking out new territories in the world behind the barriers. Boundaries have been breached for centuries. Long before razor wire and security cameras dared explorers to discover forbidden locations beyond, inquisitive minds sought to discover
hidden and unseen places. The urge to explore is inherent in human nature. “We are all born explorers,” says researcher and urban explorer Dr Bradley L Garrett. “It’s a natural, almost primal instinct when we’re young to spend time exploring the environment around us. But then, as we grow older, the social conditioning sets in. Explorers are people who ignore this or choose to rediscover those suppressed natural instincts.” Urban explorers, also known as the UrbEx community, are thought to number in the tens of thousands. They climb cranes and bridges, descend into subway networks, infiltrate monuments to industry and commerce old and new. Wherever there’s a sign which says “No”, there’s a team of adventurers saying “We don’t care”. These groups have been around in the US and Europe since the 1960s, but there has been a surge in last dozen years. The UrbEx bible, Access All Areas, was published in 2005, and urban exploration is now a global underground movement connected via websites and forums sharing info, photos, films and experiences. “Some people explore to fight the system,” says Koen L. “Some see it as urban archaeology, discovering secrets of the industrial pyramids. For others, it’s like playtime, exploring with friends.” Most urban explorers adhere to good-practice guidelines found on UrbEx websites. Others feel that rules run contrary to the essence of urban exploration. “Trying to make rules or codes among people who exist because they don’t follow rules or codes is somewhat hilariously paradoxical,” says
Moses Gates, an experienced explorer and author of upcoming memoir Hidden Cities. When it comes to the rules of the legal system, however, urban explorers seem to be united in breaking them. The legalillegal argument has little impact on the planning and execution of a mission, other than to change the risk-reward ratio. Explorers believe everyone has the right to access public infrastructure, by which they mean anything funded or maintained by public tax money. Some extend this to corporate property and anything that noticeably affects the community or society around it. In April, Garrett and the London Consolidation Crew climbed to the top of The Shard: at 330m, London and Europe’s tallest building. The publicity they received generated backlash within the UrbEx community. “Some say we are exacerbating the security culture by publicising our exploits, which leads to more locations getting sealed and locked down,” Garrett says. “I don’t see that evidence yet; we’re still out every week cracking new places, but maybe in time that will happen.” “It’s getting tough to find new locations,” says Koen L, exiting through the hole in the fence outside the Brussels labelling plant, satisfied with the four hours spent exploring and photographing every level, every ransacked office and storage bay. “But the world’s a big place and when you look beyond the fences and walls, it becomes even bigger.” www.placehacking.co.uk
PHOTOGRAPH: BENITA LIPPS
“Just walk in like you own the place.
LONDON, UK THE WALBROOK Of the city’s 20 or so subterranean rivers (some are disputed, more mythical than covered by concrete), this one is found right at its heart, under the financial district. “It’s one of the oldest of its kind in London,” says urban explorer Silent UK, who took this shot of his fellow explorer, BambooPanda, in 2009. All explorers use nicknames and aliases, to keep their methods secret and ensure that their exploration efforts can be recognised anonymously. Photograph: Silent UK
LIVERPOOL, UK WEST TOWER “At some point in 2006 it became clear to us that the major development sites in any big city could be easily accessed,” says Adventure Worldwide’s Snaps. “Typically, we’d climb such landmarks for the view and also for the sense of freedom and excitement.” The construction site for Liverpool’s West Tower, soon to be the city’s tallest building at 140m, proved too tempting back in 2006. Here, explorer Frank enjoys the panorama and serenity from the crane on top of the tower, two years before it was completed. Photograph: www.adventureworldwide.net
ZELJAVA, CROATIA UNDERGROUND AIRBASE A massive underground airbase on the border between Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina was built for the Yugoslav air force in 1968. Codenamed ‘Objekat 505’, it was one of the largest and most expensive military construction projects in Europe at the time, with huge tunnels and hangars where Mig jets were stored and maintained. Despite attempts to destroy the facility, it can still be accessed and explored. Here, explorer Urban Fox is seen in one of the tunnels, giving an idea of the sheer scale of the installation. Photograph: www.adventureworldwide.net
ANTWERP, BELGIUM METRO SYSTEM Australian urban explorer Dsankt ascends from an unfinished section of the Antwerp metro system. “We had found the huge shaft leading down to the unfinished metro tunnels below, and so had spent a day buying the necessary rope kit to get down into it,” says photographer Snaps. “In the end it became a long night, and we climbed out just before dawn.” Photograph: www.adventureworldwide.net
MOSCOW, RUSSIA UNDERGROUND RIVER After exploring the underground Neglinnaya River, Steve Duncan and his crew exited through a sewer manhole at the edge of Red Square. The river was originally a key waterway in the Russian capital, until the early 19th century when it was put underground. Shortly after surfacing, the US explorers were caught by Russian military police. “Even though the Cold War is over,” says Duncan, “they still aren’t happy about Americans running around under the Kremlin.” The police deemed the explorers mad, not malicious, and let them go. Photograph: Steve Duncan
LONDON, UK DOWN STREET Closed in 1932, this disused Underground station is in the heart of London’s Mayfair. Bradley Garrett went there as part of a five-man team in February 2011. “We sat on a ledge over a 20m drop into darkness,” says Garrett. “Trains would pass through the tunnel below us, pushing a warm wind laced with black dust into our faces... with no ropes, we descended on bolts and rusty pipes.” Photograph: Bradley L Garrett/ www.placehacking.co.uk
ST PAUL, USA UTILITY TUNNELS “The soft sandstone [under the ‘twin cities’ of St Paul and Minneapolis] made it easy for the cities and private companies to build more tunnels than under a city on hard rock,” says Steve Duncan. This is an obsolete telephone network tunnel with active water supply pipes. Photograph: Steve Duncan
MOSCOW, RUSSIA METRO SYSTEM POWER TUNNELS Moses Gates wriggles into a ventilation shaft. “It’s so difficult to get in without getting caught or being killed by trains, but our local guide had figured out this back door into the Metro,” says Gates’s fellow explorer, Steve Duncan. Photograph: Steve Duncan
VIENNA, AUSTRIA FLAKTURM The Nazis built eight Flakturms, or flak towers, during World War II in the cities of Berlin, Hamburg and Vienna, serving as large, above-ground, anti-aircraft gun turrets and air-raid shelters capable of shielding tens of thousands of people from Allied air raids. While most of them remain outwardly intact, the interiors tell another story. “A section of the inside of the one we infiltrated in Vienna had been blown to pieces,” says Snaps. “This photo shows Urban Fox standing amid the wreckage, giving an idea of the sheer size of this thing.” Photograph: www.adventureworldwide.net
NIAGARA, CANADA NIAGARA FALLS The power generation relics at Niagara Falls are particularly interesting to explorers as they chart the attempts to harness the raw power of the falls. This photo shows the ‘outfall’ of the William Rankine power station. This tunnel would once have returned water from the power station, which entered near the brink of the falls, back into the river at the bottom of the gorge. “The highlight of the exploration was managing to rig a rope up into the bowels of the power plant, eventually emerging on the mothballed turbine floor,” says Snaps. Photograph: www.adventureworldwide.net
LONDON, UK HERON TOWER The third-tallest building in England’s capital, after The Shard and Canary Wharf’s One Canada Square. “When we visited, the city was covered in fog. Visibility was almost zero, but that added its own charm,” says Silent UK. The top of Heron Tower’s mast is 230m above ground; just visible in this shot is explorer Speed, during a 2008 place hack when the building was still under construction. Photograph: Silent UK
THE DOCTOR E
Interview: Herbert Völker Photography: Maria Ziegelböck
Dr Helmut Marko His job title is Red Bull Racing Motorsport Director, but he is an adviser, analyst, stringpuller and mediator. He’s also an authority on team operations, and has a canny knack of getting to the heart of what makes motor racing tick
Is In Session
very story of great triumph has many components, and the success of Red Bull Racing is no exception. A vital and lesser-known line of force in the world champion team is that of Sebastian and The Doctor. Red Bull Racing Motorsport Director Dr Helmut Marko, 69, a school friend of 1970 Formula One world champ Jochen Rindt, came through the ranks in the all-guns-blazing era of F1, to drive for the BRM team. Losing the sight in his left eye, during a Grand Prix in 1972, put paid to Marko’s Formula One promising driving career. That led him to work behind the scenes in the sport he knows and loves. Among his diverse talents (he also heads Red Bull Racing’s young driver programme, through which he met Sebastian Vettel about 10 years ago) is an ability to assess racing holistically, laying bare all possible connections to improve tactics and strategy. What a great thing to talk about. : Why are you known as The Doctor? : During my racing career, I completed a doctorate in law. That was somewhat unusual, and I think the media liked saying there
ADDITIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY: GETTY IMAGES
It was a team effort that won Red Bull Racing and Sebastian Vettel their third consecutive constructors’ and drivers’ Formula One titles. Advising Vettel, as he has done over a decade, was Dr Helmut Marko. Here he reveals what makes Seb so special, and what’s next for F1
ONE: SINGULAR SENSATION It’s a good number to end the season on, as Sebastian Vettel and The Doctor head off for an all-too short winter break
was a Doctor Marko on the grid. There were not that many doctors among the Le Mans and Formula One drivers. The name stuck, as a sort of label or first-name substitute. Everyone around here knows ‘The Doctor’, and they are not referring to medical care. You have the reputation for understanding art and creativity, as well as the deeper secrets of motor racing, but you are regarded as very cool and aloof. Does that bother you? You’ll never make it in Formula One if you are only addicted to beauty. Few would argue with the fact that you are a mentor in the racing life of Sebastian Vettel, for about 10 years now. You met when he was a boy with braces. How did he get the warmth and security that a young person needs in his development? He was certainly well looked after by his parents. Young people with a penchant for love and security stay as long as they 43
EVERYTHING WILL BE ALRIGHT At Singapore, race 14 of 20 in 2012, new technology, speed and motivation turned Red Bull Racing’s season around
can in what you would hope is their protected zone. Others are inclined to strike out early and make their own way. But you don’t need all that much TLC. It is enough to recognise their strengths. Creating an artificial atmosphere of softness and cosiness just doesn’t fit in the world of Formula One. When was the first time Vettel talked to you on a more informal basis? No idea, really. It just happens over time without any great fuss. How did your relationship develop into what is obviously a stable partnership? First and foremost, we have a business partnership at a very clear, open and honest level. If he has problems, he comes directly to me – and vice versa if I have concerns. This works in a very professional manner. And, of course, you get a lot closer personally, no question. Do you enjoy having a good chat? Sure, but I don’t broadcast that fact. It is characteristically Sebastian to hold ‘Vettel the race driver’ up to the public, and he wants to keep his personal life private. Quite rightly so, too. But it also has to do with the fact that he is so incredibly focused on his job, so he needs the rest and the time off. He has to withdraw into himself so that he can then call upon the thing that no other driver has, in qualifying or during a race. I’m very well aware of the way Sebastian prepares, so that 44
gives him a great deal of personal freedom to do what it takes to achieve the best performance. Towards the end of the season, the PR circus must have tested the limits of his patience. You have to give him credit for the way he handles that. He could earn a lot more money if he would make more PR appearances. He is very reticent to do that. Outside his normal obligations within our team programme, he tries to only do those things that are fun. You seem to float freely through, or above, the tightly interwoven structure of a Formula One company. There, it is about combining a sports strategy and technical direction with a political and economic vision. And, in the thick
“I TOLD MY PEOPLE,
‘Boys, there is no need for Vettel if we can’t give him the car he needs in order for his skills to shine’”
of it all is you, the analyst. Where do your analyses end up? In the team, with the drivers, the boss. Unlike the others, I am able to focus on the big picture. And, regarding the ‘boss’, what role does Dietrich Mateschitz play in the team during the season? If I tell him that it would be helpful if he showed up occasionally, then he does. A visit to the factory, or a racetrack, can work wonders for motivation. He is the greatest when it comes to motivation, he’s knows exactly what to do. He came to two races in 2012: Barcelona and Monza. Afterwards, he thought it would be better if he didn’t come any more, because those were precisely the two races that yielded the worst results. I wouldn’t go so far as to say he is superstitious; let’s just say he is more of a spiritual man. I know that Didi gets very excited and jittery when he watches a race on television, and he also knows very well the difference between bad luck and an error – how a performance looks over three races, and suchlike. If things are not going so well for us, he inspires us. Instead of venting, he says, “Don’t worry!” not, “You must…” He’d rather say something uplifting and encouraging. As opposed to some other teams… …which is none of our business. Without rehashing the entire 2012 season, can we touch on a few aspects:
“WE CAN DO IT!” Vettel show his delight in Singapore. This was the beginning of an outstanding winning streak of four victories in a row
PHOTOGRAPHY: GETTY IMAGES (4), MARKUS KUCERA
LITTLE VETTEL In 2002 Sebastian raced his last karting season. The previous year he was crowned German and European junior champion
the overall thoughts and reactions of the main characters, for example? The year was characterised by the fact that we couldn’t always make full use of the speed we had available. The beginning was rough, then came the high of Bahrain [race four of 20], and just when we thought, ‘We’re back’, came Valencia [race eight], with that stupid alternator damage when we were clearly leading. Then Vettel’s next alternator problem, in Monza [race 13]. We were about 40 points adrift then, but there was no finger pointing; in fact it pulled the whole team closer together, and everyone said, “We can do it!” No one more than Vettel: “We can do it!” How irritated was the team’s chief technical officer, Adrian Newey, during this dry spell? Very irritated, and so he increased his work rate – which was already significant. First, he concentrated on understanding the relationship between the car and the tyres, which was a very, very finicky job this year. Secondly, there was his response to the supposed illegality the front wing. Third, he had to deal with the prohibition of the “exhaust blowings”. This was perhaps the hardest setback for us, because we were absolutely brilliant when it came to using the exhaust. (Our old method has actually been reinstated, albeit in a modified form.) Lastly, we can say that, at that stage of the season, the ideal Vettel set-up had yet to be found. It is quite different from that of the Webber cars. Only with that set-up can you see the incredible, 110 per cent Vettel in qualifying. How was your own state of mind during those weeks? The tension was there, but problems make me even more focused than usual. The harder it gets, the calmer I see things,
but my sleep suffers. I told my people, “Boys, there is no need for Vettel if we can’t give him the car he needs in order for his skills to shine.” Everyone made such an incredible effort, but for a while even we didn’t quite understand what was going on. Did the team principal, Christian Horner, lose his nerve? Horner is generally the counterbalance, but I think his nervous energy was stretched to the limits at the last race. You could have cut the atmosphere with a knife before the last race – around the team, not Vettel himself. At what moment did the team feel that they had turned a corner in terms of performance? In Singapore [race 14 of 20], no question. Adrian Newey and his team found the all-encompassing solution in the harmony between the tyres, the front wing, the exhaust. This lent the drivers confidence, and was most noticeable in qualifying. Vettel was already ahead by 13 points when the Abu Dhabi nerve-killer came [race 18]: too little fuel in his tank after the qualifying, shoved to the back, hammer through, mistake under safety car, change wing, thundered back from last place again. Under these circumstances, third place was, of course, fantastic, but it wasn’t enough to give us any relief. So everything ratcheted up for the last race in Brazil. It was in Brazil that arguably the most exciting moment of the season took place. Not for me. Vettel is sent into a spin by Senna in the first lap, which may have given the fans the ultimate thrill, but I became very quiet. I see that the engine is running, the damage is quickly assessed, then I see he’s in 19th place, with most of the race to go, he’s two seconds faster than the guy in eighth,
FORWARDS AND BACKWARDS The breathing space which Vettel gained in the US Grand Prix (above) was almost used up in Brazil (left), when he collided with Bruno Senna at the fourth corner of the race
which is where he has to be – and that’s what preoccupies me. Thanks to a great team effort, we also managed the additional pitstop and so on. How did you gauge Vettel’s state of mind during the ups and downs of the season? Sebastian’s driving was virtually flawless. But he is a phenomenon: it is always like that. After the summer break, his performance curve shoots up. That’s what happened in previous years, too. I don’t know how he does it, but to keep doing it cannot be a coincidence. That brings us back to his method of preparation, the way he shuts himself off from the rest of the world, so that he can still call on reserves that other drivers might not have: Fernando Alonso, for example, who is busy with politics and funny comments. Vettel ignores it all, he doesn’t read the newspapers, or the internet. And that’s the point, you see, we concentrate on our job: to make the fastest car and the best team possible. How does Mark Webber cope with the changing situations?
“SEB’S DRIVING WAS ALMOST FLAWLESS. It is
always like that. He’s phenomenal. I don’t know how he does it, but it can’t be coincidence” form, it seems to me that Mark’s form somehow flattens out. Then, if some technical mishap occurs, like with the alternator for example, he falls relatively easily into a downward spiral. No driver remains unaffected by this, because the tension is palpable. In 2010, it was particularly extreme. Webber headed into the final race with better chances than Vettel, and he probably carried
easy, of course; this would gnaw away at anyone’s confidence. It’s more than understandable. Is it better to have arch rivals or good buddies on the same team? The important thing is that both are somewhere close in speed so that they push each other, and that the technical crews understand each car’s limits. Almost all drivers have track preferences: better on one, less so on another. The better the driver, the smaller the variation. If you have two equally strong drivers, then you know where you stand with the car. For harmony within the team it is of course easier if the two get along. So in the meantime, we have found a modus vivendi. Sebastian and Mark work constructively together in tuning the cars: all information is freely available. They are not likely to go to dinner together, but that is how it is in most teams, and it’s totally OK. Two alpha males can never really understand each other. Where do you stand on the argument that there is a world’s best driver and his name is not Vettel. Vettel himself
PROOF POSITIVE Marko says it’s nonsense when people say that Vettel is fast, but can’t overtake. He showed otherwise in Abu Dhabi (above) and Brazil
It seems to me that Webber has on average two races per year where he is unbeatable, but he can’t maintain this form throughout the year. And as soon as his prospects start to look good in the world championship, he has a little trouble with the pressure that this creates. In comparison with Seb’s rising 46
the disappointment of his defeat into the 2011 season, which is so easy to understand. Something that I think is also very important is that for much of his career, Mark was never in a top team, but he was always regarded as a high flyer if he only could get into the right team. Then Red Bull puts him in a car – a possible winner – and suddenly along comes this young kid and he snatches the booty from under Mark’s nose. Psychologically it’s not
remains admirably cool on the subject. There is a lot of nonsense being said. “Vettel can’t overtake.” Ridiculous; just look at Abu Dhabi and Brazil. “He is only able to win because he’s sitting in a Newey car.” We have two Newey cars, so why aren’t we clinching one-two at every race? Then the comment of the great Jackie Stewart that Vettel must go to another team to prove himself. This is said by someone who scored all his greatest successes in just one team, Tyrrell. I can’t take it seriously. We at Red Bull Racing are not just a bunch of civil servants. As long as we provide Sebastian with a car and an environment in which he can become world champion, he will probably stay with us. If both do
PHOTOGRAPHY: GETTY IMAGES (2), GEPA-PICTURES.COM
TWO ALPHA MALES, ONE DIRECTION Relations between Webber and Vettel might not extend to cosy dinners, but they’re harmonious enough for an efficient working relationship
OUT OF THE RUT Early races weren’t great, but after a first win of the season at the fourth race, in Bahrain, Vettel, and Christian Horner, moved up a gear
not fit, then we have to come up with something fresh. But we have a very good junior programme, and maybe some day someone else will become champion in our car. The old gentleman, Enzo Ferrari, railed against the British ‘garagisti’0 as virtually worthless Formula One opponents. How do you think he would have taken to a drink manufacturer as the superior force today? I believe that there is no way old Enzo would have liked such defeat, but he would acknowledge the performance of the opposition – and then would whip his boys accordingly so they’d do everything to beat us. But not with such actions as we have recently experienced. Alonso is constantly involved in politics. I believe we saw the stress he was under towards the end of the season. Saying things like, “I’m competing against Hamilton, not Vettel,” and “I’m up against Newey,” these psychological skirmishes. We said, “Just ignore him.” You have gained a reputation as a clever and thoughtful observer of Formula One. What do you think about its current state? Eighty-five per cent of the races run really well. A prime example was in Austin, Texas, where an entire city and an entire state were whipped into an excited frenzy about the race. The race was the event, there was this
excitement about the future. Generally, the state of Formula One is OK, there are exciting races. The drag reduction system (DRS) has certainly helped. KERS [recovering kinetic energy through braking] is a very complex thing, but of course it also contributes to the show. As for cost reduction, we are happy to have it, but it should not amount to the unilateral pruning of the aerodynamics, which is clearly our strength. Chassis and engine: they have to be as one, in a package. Basically, 2013 will remain stable technically. It is important to have a car that is fast on all circuits and, above all, reliable. Reliability plays an increasingly important role. One cannot afford
“IT IS IMPORTANT TO HAVE A CAR THAT IS FAST ON EVERY CIRCUIT AND THAT IS, ABOVE ALL, RELIABLE.
Reliability plays an increasingly important role”
any DNFs. That’s Alonso’s secret – he experienced not one technical defect in 2012. The big change comes in 2014, with the small, six-cylinder engines. The prognoses are that similar power outputs to today will be reached, with a higher contribution of KERS, and less fuel consumption. This will result in a ripple effect to the outside world, something that commercial car companies also need to integrate into their strategies. KERS brings at least a doubling of available auxiliary power – through logistical and technical progress. The batteries will become lighter, they can store more capacity, and yet are smaller. Let’s finish with a personal question. Do you find yourself ever thinking how your life would have been if your career as an F1 driver had not been halted by chance with one flying pebble in 1972? You were, after all, touted for big things. I never play the ‘what if’ game because of my lost eye. There is simply no point in thinking about it: it just happened. One has enough examples of highly successful racing drivers who fail in their lives after they retire because they don’t know how it will go on. For me there’s a clear choice: to do something completely different. It goes on, everything goes on. That, incidentally, is a very good motto for our team. www.redbullracing.com
once a year, 450 BASE-jumpers dive from a Bridge over a gorge in americaâ€™s Appalachian Mountains.
VETERANS USE A HUMAN CATAPULT. ROOKIES SIT QUIVERING BACK IN THE HOTEL. WELCOME TO BRIDGE DAY Words: Andreas Rottenschlager Photography: Julie Glassberg
Free-fall festival: “You feel like a gambler who’s hit the jackpot”
cott Haynes stands on a scaffold 3m high in the garden of the Holiday Lodge Hotel and takes another deep breath. He wants to practise his jump. One final time. Haynes has close-cropped black hair. His face is hidden behind green-rimmed sunglasses. He isn’t very big, but he comes across as extremely fit. He is hanging on a harness which has two bungee cords attached to the back of it. The cords are meant to cushion his fall. He stretches his arms up, to either side at a 45-degree angle, and looks straight ahead of him. He says, “Three, two, one – see ya!” then hops off the platform. The bungee cords extend and Haynes lands gently on a mattress. It may look like a children’s gym exercise, but in an emergency this procedure could save Haynes’s life. The 23-year-old from New York is training for his first BASE-jump. His technique when he jumps will
decide whether his descent goes like a breeze or ends in disaster. BASE-jumping is considered the most dangerous form of parachuting. The acronym stands for the platforms from which the jumpers leap: buildings, antennas, spans (bridges) and earth (cliffs). Free fall only lasts for a few seconds and there’s no point having a spare parachute; there isn’t enough time for it to open. “BASE-jumpers are happy people,” Haynes says, removing his harness after practice. He studies English at Utica College in New York, and would like to teach after graduation. He is one of 450 jumpers to have secured a slot at the Bridge Day Festival, where, for six hours, BASE-jumpers leap off the New River Gorge Bridge near the city of Fayetteville in West Virginia. It is all legal and watched by about 80,000 spectators. Bridge Day is the BASE-jumping scene’s Woodstock: a huge show in which worldly wise veterans, nervous beginners and fearless swashbucklers all take part. Since 1977, when the bridge opened, it has taken place on the third Saturday of every October. The participants in the 2012 event have made the Holiday Lodge Hotel in Oak Hill their headquarters. For two days, this backwater town of 8,000 people becomes the centre of the BASE-jumping world. Anyone who wants to jump on Bridge Day has to have done at least 100 skydives. Skydiving is the precursor to BASE-jumping. You leap out of a plane and are in free fall for minutes. You learn
PACKIN G THE PARAC HUTE IS A RITUAL – EACH AND EVERY TIME. WHAT YOU HAVE TO DO
Left: Waiting on the jumping platform Above left: Training on the bungee cord. Correct posture saves lives Above right: Fold, tweak, secure, Ace Henderson packs his parachute
IS FOLD A PIECE OF CLOTH INTO YOUR RUCKSACK SO PERFECTLY THAT YOUR LIFE CAN COUNT ON IT how to stabilise yourself in the air and how to control the parachute. Haynes has 110 skydives to his name, plus the course he did for BASE-jumping beginners. “You learn how to deal with emergencies,” he says of the training course, “like when one of your lines gets wrapped around your parachute and you go into a tailspin.” Haynes says that there are two kinds of people. “Some like to have both feet on the ground. Others start dreaming of flying when they’re children.” Haynes definitely belongs to the latter group, but has concerns about his debut BASE-jump. “I’m in a complete panic,” he says, going on to explain that he’s jumping “because it makes me feel alive. Anyone who’s had that feeling of happiness once can’t escape
it. It’s like a gambler who’s hit the jackpot.” He says that some skydivers would sell their clothes to be able to afford a new parachute: “They display classic symptoms of addiction.” Haynes has travelled to Oak Hill, even though there isn’t a single hotel room available. So he will spend the night before his first BASE-jump in a tent in the garden of the Holiday Lodge. In the hotel’s lobby, jumpers have requisitioned every square centimetre of space, kneeling down on the carpet in front of their parachutes, pulling any creases straight and spreading their lines out neatly next to each other. Most BASE-jumps performed beyond Bridge Day are illegal. It is rare to witness the BASE-jumping scene as openly as here. If you want to become
a BASE-jumper, you have to prove yourself in a sort of caste system by assisting jumpers you know. Then you look for a mentor, an experienced BASE-jumper who will prepare novices for their first jump, explain all the risks and shatter false expectations. Dan Blakeley is one of those mentors. He is packing a parachute for a fellow jumper; he earns US$50 for each such ‘pack job’. Blakeley is a brawny guy with a firm handshake and soft facial features. He has done more than 6,000 skydives and 500 BASE-jumps, and initiated about 50 jumpers in the art of the latter. “I don’t care how much experience someone has,” Blakeley says. “Some people just shouldn’t become BASEjumpers. I find out how quickly a person 51
makes decisions. For example: someone knocks over a drink and the glass rolls off the table. Is that person the type that catches it? There are people who are clumsy by nature. To those people I have to say, ‘Sorry, no.’ The worst thing that could have happened to my sport was YouTube. Kids see a spectacular BASEjump, but what they don’t see is the years of work and training that come before it.” Blakeley has seen friends die, and he almost drowned a couple of years ago when he landed in the water after a jump from a bridge went wrong. But he has never thought of stopping. “BASE-jumping is my life,” he says, “I love it when my heart begins to race.” Blakeley has stopped discussing the dangers of his sport with other people, but he will happily explain to anyone he thinks is truly interested that, “BASE-jumpers are not crazy people who are tired of life. I plan to die on my porch when I’m old and grey.” The jumpers in the Holiday Lodge
are afflicted by a strange combination of hyperactivity and tension. They all have their own ways of dealing with the pressure: going to bed early, asking like-minded people for advice, cracking open a third can of Bud Light. It is quiet on the first floor corridor when Ace Henderson is packing his parachute. It is a ritual, each and every time. What you have to do is fold a piece of cloth the size of a tent into your rucksack so perfectly that your life can count on it. Henderson is a quiet master of his craft. There is something meditative about watching him. He lays down flat on his parachute to squeeze out any air. He smooths out any creases, secures the folded parachute with pegs. Henderson moves his fingers with the precision of a surgeon as he tenses the lines in parallel along the ground and then places them in a figure of eight. You can’t help feeling that he is taking care of an old friend. The procedure takes about 40 minutes,
he BASE-jumpers begin leaping from the bridge at one minute intervals from 9am. It is a surreal spectacle: bodies falling, parachutes popping open and then a gentle drift down towards the river. The jumpers either tip-toe tentatively off the bridge or confidently perform somersaults. Some look serious. Some make faces. A lot of them shout, “See ya!” before taking the leap. It sounds as if they are trying to reassure themselves. The first highpoint of the day comes at 10am. Donald Cripps climbs onto the platform. At 83, Donald is the oldest jumper in the field. He is a small man with a friendly face. Cripps was already a pensioner when he started skydiving. Before that, he served as a technician with the US Navy. Today, he is attempting his second BASE-jump, and shows no sign of nerves. He is probably the most relaxed participant this year. He did his first two parachute jumps in the
Left: Tension builds in the queue Right: Three down, hundreds more to go
ADDITIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY: VERTICAL VISIONS
‘I DO’ SHE SAYS. THE BRIDE AND GROOM JUMP TOGETH ER, THE WEDDING COMPLETE
then Henderson closes his rucksack. “I wanted to do it properly,” he says. The next morning, the drive from the hotel to the New River Gorge Bridge takes less than five minutes, after which cars get stuck in a throng of people. Bridge Day is a local festival, too. The streets are lined with hot-dog stands. Parents carry children on their shoulders. Cameras are busy clicking. People marvel at the brave participants and their crazy hobby. The New River Gorge Bridge stretches for almost a kilometre over the New River Gorge National River. The spectators head towards the middle of the bridge where the jumping platform juts out from the edge of the road. It is a drop of 267m down to the river basin. The jumpers look out over an impressive panorama of red and brown deciduous trees, dotting around a hilly landscape stretching out as far as the eye can see. Rescue boats circle down below on the river. Viewed from up here on the bridge, they look like little toy ships.
SSSSSSS! AFTER THE SHORT, LOUD HISS, THE STEEL ARM GOES UP early 1950s, during the Korean War. Most of the people here weren’t even born then. Cripps waves to the crowd. “Have a nice day!” he says, and promptly jumps off the bridge. Anyone who thinks that the show from the jumping platform can’t be topped is later disabused when the human catapult is fired. The organisers have allocated 24 places for this monstrosity, a prototype which has been painted a gaudy red and whose design can only make you think of machines familiar from pictures 54
AND NESBITT IS CATAPULTED FROM of Middle Age sieges. The contraption is powered by compressed air. At 10.45am, Joe Nesbitt makes himself comfortable sitting backwards on the ejector seat. He only answers questions from bystanders in incomplete sentences. “Wanted to try something new,” he says, when asked what drove him to this. His version of, ‘No, he hasn’t told his family,’ is, “I’ll send them a photo after.” Sssssss! After the short, loud hiss, the steel arm goes up and Nesbitt is flung from the bridge in a high arc. The man turns out to be the consummate pro. He
Left: From launch to ’chute, including, top left, a catapult Right: Scott Haynes after his first jump: “There are people who dream of flying.” Below left: Wet but soft, for one day a year, the New River in West Virginia becomes a landing zone
THE BRIDGE IN A HIGH ARC does three backflips and then opens his parachute. You wouldn’t mind seeing the look on his parents’ faces when they see the photographic evidence of all this later. At 11am, the wacky emotional highlight of the event: a wedding ceremony on the abyss. Erika Terranova swigs nervously from her water bottle every 30 seconds. She is wearing a white hoodie and a lace ribbon in her hair. Erika is about to marry Patrick Steiner and then jump off the bridge strapped to her new husband. The wind blows snippets of the vows of fidelity down
from the platform towards the crowd. “I will always support you... believe in you... respect you.” At 11.15 on the dot, Erika and Patrick are man and wife. The tandem harness is placed on the bride. “I do,” says Erika. You can hear the fear of the jump wrapped up with pre-wedding nerves. Shortly afterwards, the bride and groom plunge downwards towards the New River, the crowd cheering them on, and the ceremony is complete. At 2pm, with an hour to go until the end of the event, the queue for
the jumping platform goes on and on. Spectators who want to watch the last jumpers from below squeeze into one of the yellow school buses making shuttle runs from the bridge to the riverbank. The vehicles creak their way down the winding roads into the valley on a journey that takes about 20 minutes. Those getting out at the end of the ride are rewarded with a garishly grotesque mixture of drama and ecstasy: jumpers who land too quickly are dragged over the broken stones of the shore, still attached to their parachutes. Just a few metres away, rescue boats pull jubilant BASE-jumpers out of the river. At the edge of the landing zone – soaking wet and with a broad grin on his face – is Scott Haynes. He has jumped twice today. At breakfast he ate a cereal bar. He couldn’t manage to get anything else down. “I assume you know what BASE stands for?” he asks. “I’m going to start looking for an antenna, a building and then a cliff.” www.officialbridgeday.com
B U L L E VA R D
A round table with a trio of filmmaker-adventurers whose 3D movies are the current bar-raisers for sports action documentary cinema: “The limits are… limitless” Words: Christophe Couvrat Photography: Gunnar Knechtel
t the prestigious San Sebastián Film Festival last year, snowboarding film The Art of FLIGHT 3D received its world premiere on the same day that Storm Surfers 3D made its European debut. The former is an epic of international off-piste snowboarding, directed by Curt Morgan and starring American snowboarder Travis Rice, the pioneering big-mountain ’boarder and outspoken figurehead for his sport. The stars of Storm Surfers 3D have been friends for 25 years. In their film, Tom Carroll, a two-time world surfing champ, and Ross Clarke-Jones – unofficial big-wave world champion and the first nonHawaiian to win the Eddie Aikau Memorial, a touchstone Hawaii surf contest – embark on a similar globetrotting mission as Rice does in his. However, instead of riding snow previously thought untouchable, the two Australians track extreme weather and surf the giant waves it generates. Rice, Carroll and Clarke-Jones sat down with The Red Bulletin for a fully three-dimensional discussion encompassing the water of life, inner voices and feeling like a lion. : What sticks most in your memory about making Storm Surfers 3D? : There are moments that changed me physically, like when I got swallowed up by a huge wave. I thought I wasn’t going to recover. -: I can laugh about it now, but I couldn’t back then when I saw his face. What stays with me is that at every screening we’ve been to, there have been children aged six and grandparents aged 75. It’s the first 56
time that surfing has been shown in an accurate, non-Hollywood way. The directors [Chris Nelius and Justin McMillan] knew what they were doing. : Absolutely. We had 1,500 hours of darting about to end up with a film lasting an hour and 30 minutes. : We made the film serious without being arrogant. What do you feel as you attack a wave? : Adrenalin, mostly. : Seeing the wave in the distance brings an emotional response. That’s when the danger begins, and then you leap into
“WE MADE THE FILM SERIOUS WITHOUT BEING ARROGANT”
“THE HARDEST THING? DOING THE VOICE-OVERS” TRAVIS RICE
“YOU FEEL LIKE A LION IN A CAGE IN A STUDIO” TOM CARROLL
Action: both movies were a hit at San Sebastián
action. It’s like when a dog grabs something in its mouth and then won’t let go of it. When the wave hits, you know you’re not going to let go of it and vice versa. The two of you are long-time great friends. Which of the other’s qualities do you admire? : I’d like to be organised like him. He’s got 87 surfboards lined up in his garage in a perfectly organised way. It’s insane! That’s not how I am. : The guy is crazy. Not a bit crazy: completely crazy! A lot more than I am. Do you think you’ve reached your limits? : It all depends how you define limits. The older you get, the more you think of the consequences of a fall. There’s a little voice in your head that tells you whether to go for it or not. I’ve hit 50 now, so I’m physically very different from the man I was 20 or 30 years ago. My attitude has changed, too. I’m more aware of the risks now. If you go flying into the air aged 50, you’re going to pay a high price. But one thing’s for sure, I never thought I’d be doing this at my age. : Yes, maybe we’re more cautious when it comes to risk now. People have said to me, ‘Remember, you’re a father...’ but nothing really changes. : Limits challenge the unconscious. They are each other’s mirror image. : The limits of what we do are… limitless, as far as I’m concerned. That’s the basic principle of a limit, after all. These two guys here with me now prove that age isn’t a limit. What was the most memorable thing about The Art of FLIGHT 3D? : The action, and, at the end of the day, the film was even better than we thought. All three of you are weather experts. : It’s true, we are. You have to get to know the liquid element. We’re made up of water. This planet is largely made up of water. It’s everywhere. Snow is water, and it moves, too, like a river does. What is the most complicated part of making a snowboard film? : You know what the hardest thing was? Doing the voice-overs, the narration, after we’d filmed. : You feel like a lion in a cage in a studio. What’s your ultimate dream? : We’re living it right now. : This is what we wanted to do when we were kids. : Maybe it’s appropriate to be satisfied and content with how things are right now. : A good, 30m wave. That’s the dream. : I’m just happy to be doing what I do. www.redbull.com www.artofflightmovie.com www.stormsurfers.com.au
Stars of surf and snow (from left): Tom Carroll, Travis Rice and Ross Clarke-Jones
Tom Abercrombie is a leading light of New Zealand basketball. In that position, hopes of playing in the NBA – your own, and of those around you – never die. But having already dipped his toe in US basketball, and with an ankle recently on ice, can the dreams come true? Words: Robert Tighe Photography: Nic Staveley
The only thing more surprising than Mika Vukona’s game-winning three-pointer for the New Zealand Breakers against the Sydney Kings in early November was the big fat zero beside Tom Abercrombie’s name in the points column on the stats sheet. Vukona is better known as the Breakers’ hard man, rather than a threepoint shooter. NBA star Karl Malone earned the nickname The Mailman because he always delivered, and you could say the same about Abercrombie. Or at least you could before the start of this season. The last time Abercrombie failed to score in an NBL game was in his rookie season four years ago, and one newspaper report after the Kings game suggested he was “somewhat of a tortured soul”. “Tortured is a bit of stretch,” says Abercrombie, with one eye on the cricket on the big screen of his bachelor pad on Auckland’s North Shore. It’s a Monday afternoon, a rest day for the 25-year-old professional basketball player, after Abercrombie spent the weekend in Australia, playing two nights in a row on the ‘Sunshine Swing’ through Townsville and Cairns. “I guess I’m healed after two good wins on the road,” says Abercrombie. “If we win, I’m happy; it doesn’t matter how many points I score or don’t score.” Abercrombie admits he’s had an inconsistent start to the season, but he’s been playing on a left ankle that he reckons is only 85 per cent after surgery in the off-season. The injury came in the closing minutes of last year’s NBL semifinal against the Townsville Crocodiles. With the Breakers leading comfortably, Abercrombie was hammered from behind on his way to the basket. He landed awkwardly and rolled his ankle; a few weeks later, a surgeon removed tiny bone fragments that he keeps in a jar in his bedroom. It’s an odd keepsake, given that those skeletal chips stopped him pulling on a Boston Celtics singlet in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas last year. The Summer League is a two-week tournament in July that gives NBA teams an opportunity to reassess players on their roster who spend most of the regular season warming the bench. Unsigned players are also given the chance to impress. Instead of strutting his stuff in Las Vegas, Abercrombie 59
”TOM’S ATHLETIC ABILITY IS OFF THE CHARTS” had to take time out, lying on a couch in Auckland, icing his ankle. “It was obviously incredibly disappointing to miss out,” he says. “It was only the Summer League, but it would have been my first opportunity and it could have been a stepping stone to the NBA.” Abercrombie has had the NBA in his DNA since he was a high-school basketball star at Westlake Boys. That led to him being courted by a number of US colleges and he chose Washington State University. He got limited game time in his first year there, but turned heads during his dozen appearances. An entry on the WSU Hoops online forum describes how Abercrombie’s “athleticism turned him into somewhat of an urban legend… all anyone heard was how high the 60
coaching staff was on this long, lanky kid who kept destroying people in practice and needed just a little more seasoning before taking the Pac-10 [college basketball tournament] by storm.” Instead of a little more seasoning, Abercrombie got the sack. That was in May 2008 and he still doesn’t know why he was cut. His only regret is he didn’t get more court time to prove his worth. He
”IT WAS INCREDIBLY DISAPPOINTING TO MISS OUT ON THE SUMMER LEAGUE IN LAS VEGAS. IT COULD HAVE BEEN A STEPPING STONE TO THE NBA”
came home to New Zealand, signed for the Breakers and set about rebuilding his career. At the World Championships in 2010, he delivered a series of eyecatching performances for the Tall Blacks. In 2011, helping the Breakers to win their first NBL title, he was the finals MVP, and last year he played a crucial role in the Breakers retaining the championship. Now he’s rehabbing his ankle and regaining confidence. “I’ve never suffered a serious injury before,” he says, “and it takes a while before you can attack a rebound or go for a dunk without worrying about coming down hard or landing on someone’s foot. But I’m getting there. I’m starting to play on instinct again.” Instinct and athleticism are two things that have served Abercrombie well so far in his career. At 1.98m (6ft 6in) he’s tall for a swingman – a player who can play in the small forward or shooting guard positions – and while he’s leaner and lighter than he would like, he makes up for that in other ways. “His athleticism is off the charts,” says Abercrombie’s US agent, Brad Ames. “There are a lot of guys in the NBA who are great athletes in specific respects, but Tom’s athleticism makes
Born July 5, 1987, in Auckland Tweet Feet He’s still not sure who’s responsible for @TomAboLeftAnkle, the Twitter feed set up (and still going) after last year’s injury. First tweet? “Ouch!” Party Of Two Sean Marks and Kirk Penney, the only New Zealanders to have played in the NBA, grew up, like Abercrombie, on Auckland’s North Shore.
him a scoring option, a great defender and great in transition. He’s a good threepoint shooter, he gets to the rim and he can get double-digit rebounds. He really knows how to fill up the stat sheet.” Ames has been working with Abercrombie for the last two years and describes him as a dream client. “He’s honest, hardworking, realistic, down to earth, very motivated and very intelligent,” says Ames. “I wish everyone was like him. As a player, he’s cerebral. He’s intense, but stays on a very even keel and doesn’t get flustered by mistakes.” On court, Abercrombie’s impassive expression rarely changes, whether he’s knocking down three-pointers or executing his trademark ‘alley-oops’, a play in which a team-mate lobs the ball towards the basket and Abercrombie catches it in mid-air and dunks it. “Usually the only time I get frustrated is with bad calls,” Abercrombie says. “I try to stay unfazed by everything. I’m pretty realistic, I know how tough it is to make it in the NBA, and if I get another opportunity, I’ll give it everything. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t.” Jonathan Givony is the Breakers US scout, who says he who watches an “unhealthy amount” of basketball. His
website, DraftExpress, is dedicated to scouting and assessing NBA prospects. “It’s about being in the right place at the right time,” says Givony. “There are at least 100 players not playing in the NBA who could swap places with the bottom 100 guys in the NBA. Tom is in that mix. He has NBA size, NBA athleticism, he has that outside shooting ability and I think his best basketball is still in front of him.” There have been recent examples of NBA dreams coming true. Pablo Prigioni, a 35-year-old point guard from Argentina, became the oldest rookie in the NBA in 40 years when he signed with the New York Knicks last year. Jeremy Lin of the Houston Rockets got his break playing as an unsigned player for the Dallas Mavericks in the Summer League in 2010. He signed for the Golden State Warriors, moved to the New York Knicks after one season, shot the lights out in his first three Knicks starts in February 2012 and was at the centre of a media circus called Linsanity. Then there are experiences like those of CJ Bruton, Abercrombie’s teammate
at the Breakers. Bruton made his debut in the NBL in 1994 and came close to the NBA a couple of times, and has known many other players, in New Zealand and elsewhere, who have had the ‘maybe NBA’ tag hung upon them. “The NBA is fickle, and we can pump Tom up and say he’s the best player in the NBL, but making it in the NBA is a one in a million shot,” says Bruton. “If Tom goes and plays in Europe I think he’ll have a better shot.” A move to Europe has been an option for Abercrombie since the world championships in 2010, but he’s opted to stick with the Breakers and hold out for a shot at the NBA. His agent is confident he’ll get another opportunity this year to try out for NBA teams, but, in this sport as in all others, there are no guarantees. “The best thing he can do right now is get healthy and help the Breakers win another championship,” says Ames. “He just needs to keep playing his game.” And keep the big fat zeroes off the stats sheet. www.nbl.com.au
Champion freerunner Ryan Doyle turns over a new leaf for his sport: a grand tour of world wonders with a twist. Instead of standing in front of the landmarks, he got on them and did what he does best. From Rioâ€™s favelas to the Colosseum, this, first-hand, is his excellent adventure Photography: Sebastian Marko
Interview: Ruth Morgan
1/ CHINA Shaolin monks, roasted tarantulas and Jackie Chan adventures As the martial arts capital of the world, China has influenced me and my parkour style a lot. Internet censorship there makes it hard to tell how many freerunners are active; I was told there are lots, so I was keen to see for myself. The first time we went, we lost our equipment, it rained, and I got a leg infection and had to go to hospital. The second time was great. After a 14-hour flight to Beijing, we did the four-hour drive to the Great Wall. I’ve always dreamed of doing backflips along it, so that was the first thing I did. After that, in a traditional Chinese garden, I had the honour of training with a Shaolin monk, a kung fu master. He taught me several stances and forms, and then got out a pair of nunchucks. I had a go with them, and I was awful. Being in China made me think of great martial artists. So, with four parkour athletes in the city, we put together a Jackie Chan-style action sequence for the camera. Their parkour level was high and it was great fun. The variety of food at Beijing’s night market amazed me. Pig’s ear stew, grilled baby snakes, roasted centipede, deep-fried tarantulas. I ate a tarantula, and guess what? It tasted just like chicken.
DOYLE’S DIARIES The freerunner’s daily thoughts and drawings I’m lucky in that parkour gives me the chance to go away on incredible trips, and when I do, I always keep a diary of my travels. I use it to record ideas as soon as I have them, things I want to say, or things I want to research and learn about the places I visit. I’ll write down elements of a culture or concept that I don’t understand fully, then I can look into it when I have more time. There’s a lot of personal stuff in there: drawings to remind me of moves or scenes; thoughts and observations that might not make sense to anyone else. I could put a lot of this stuff on my phone or a laptop, but there’s something I just love about having all these thoughts and memories on something as tangible as paper.
2/ JORDAN Where Indiana Jones had his Last Crusade, the parkour is first-rate The desert makes for such a soft landing. On concrete, you can’t get too high or your body will pay for it, but on sand I was able to get a lot of air time for some double twists and big jumps. Some parts [of Petra] look modern as they’re protected from the wind; others have been completely eroded. It’s over 2,000 years old and until the 1980s people were living in its caves. Our guide was born in one.
3/ INDIA Spreading the word of parkour in a land of culture clash Here, it struck me how much parkour can make me feel completely comfortable in a place that’s alien. As soon as I got up onto the rooftops and started leaping around, I began to feel completely at home. Because in other respects, India was a crazy place, a country of so many firsts for me. In Delhi, everything was so hectic and fast-paced, and from there we travelled for a few hours south to get to Agra. Here, I experienced a surprising first: eating curry for breakfast – and I loved it. I think I might continue doing it at home. And I couldn’t leave India without trying out Bollywood dancing. I got a lesson that ended in a performance, with four backing dancers and my dance teacher: now he wants to visit Liverpool so I can teach him parkour.
There are lots of videos online of skilled Indian freerunners, but in ratio to the population, it’s not a huge movement. I think this might be linked to the number of people who have regular internet access, because that’s the main way that parkour has spread, and is spreading, around the world. Visiting the Taj Mahal was something I’ll never forget. It’s breathtaking. The surprising thing is it’s actually in a very poor area, but then the huge divide between rich and poor in India is impossible to ignore. It was striking to see very poor children playing near something so grand. Travelling changes your perspective. I was constantly surprised in India, which was often due to my ignorance, but I left with a new appreciation of many things.
What the Romans did for parkour: build the first and best place for it I try to sketch on my travels, and especially enjoyed doing that in Rome with the Colosseum, which could have almost been designed with parkour in mind. Sadly, it’s so ancient I couldn’t start flipping off it, so I went into the city for that. When I’m freerunning in different places, my style evolves and changes depending on my surroundings. I take home new things from every place I go. There were so many opportunities in the Italian architecture, new ways of getting up buildings and getting from one to another. While I was there, I definitely developed an Italian parkour style; I loved playing in that city. I met an Italian parkour athlete, who is a biochemist by day and practises parkour as a hobby, for exercise, and to escape from reality in the centre of Rome. He reminded me that parkour isn’t just about getting from point A to point B, but about setting goals and achieving them. Improving your problemsolving in this way can actually help in other areas of life. Whether it’s getting across a city, or doing a job application, what you need to do is find the most efficient way of doing it.
ADDITIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY: PREDRAG VUCKOVIC/RED BULL CONTENT POOL (2)
5/ BRAZIL From beach to city centre to favela: flipping everywhere Doing parkour on Copacabana beach in Rio was incredible. Everywhere you look there are iconic scenes: the beach itself, with the view of mountains coming out of the water; Sugar Loaf Mountain; and Christ the Redeemer overlooking it all. But the first thing I think of about my time in Rio is an incredible massage I had there: I really needed one then. There’s a strong team of freerunners in central Rio, and they took us to spots around the city, but most memorably for me, they took me to meet a capoeira crew in a favela. Capoeira, the Brazilian martial art, has been a big influence on me and my style of parkour: it’s where it all started for me. I never thought that one day I would train with capoeira masters in the heart of a favela. I was nervous going there, because everyone told me it’s dangerous, but the parkour guys took me under their wing and threw us a party. The father of one of the crew cooked an amazing barbecue one night, with about 10 different types of meat. We had a proper shindig – the drinks were flowing, they had a DJ all sorted out. It’s not something most visitors to Rio get to experience, and I’m grateful for that.
6/ MEXICO The end of the world? Not quite. But an injury very nearly put paid to the trip Mexico has a thriving parkour scene, so I had a lot of friends there from previous trips, but I’d never been to Chichen Itza, the ancient Mayan city: it’s a masterpiece. The only downside to the trip were the injuries I got on day one. One of the first moves I tried to do was at a market. I saw a metal bar I wanted to do a trick off, and I got up there, but it had been baking in the sun all day. My hand was almost branded to the metal as I hung and swung, ripping a huge flap of skin from my palm. I had to use my wristband as a bandage. Later the same day, I rolled my ankle training with a few parkour locals. Over the next few days, though, I managed some great freerunning sessions. I was especially glad to be back in Mexico in 2012. I’ve always been interested in the Mayan calendar and the predictions about the world ending last year. I saw all the ‘prophecy 2012’ merchandise, and couldn’t help thinking that, if we’re all still here in 2013, it will all be worthless. I first heard about the prophecy when I was 14 years old, and remember thinking that I had to try and experience as much as I could before 2012 ended, in case it was all over. I think I’m doing alright so far.
7/ PERU Ancient wonders are a perfect spot for a thoroughly modern sport It took two aeroplanes, a three-hour train ride and two coaches to get to our hotel: two solid days of travel. But it was worth it. Machu Picchu, the lost city of the Incas, was deserted when it was found, and still nobody knows why. It’s steeped in mystery, just stunning, and deserves to be on the world wonder list. Machu Picchu is also 2,430m above sea level and, though I didn’t suffer from altitude sickness, it’s still quite hard to do parkour with so little oxygen in the air – so that was interesting! You can really feel it; it makes you lightheaded. The uneven nature of the ancient stones meant that I wasn’t running on a flat surface, as I usually would, so that added another new element. I had to watch my step. Much of the site is sacred, and I didn’t want to do any damage to it. But I found the perfect place to do a move called a kong gainer, one of the most dangerous in parkour. You have to change direction three times, and if you don’t choose your location wisely, there’s a strong chance of injury. Turns out, the best place in the world to do the move is a huge, ancient Inca stone in Peru.
See Ryan Doyle freerunning around the world on The Red Bulletin tablet app. Download it now for free
A Hard Rock Life
Four young Brits struggle to make their mark in heavy metal. They fall flat on their faces, get back up again, and then Papa Roach takes the band on tour. Heaven’s Basement have arrived
Singer Aaron Buchanan screams into the microphone with his fists clenched, his mane of blond hair shaking. Sid Glover is kneeling on the floor and thrashing the living daylights out of his guitar. On drums, Chris Rivers is even more energetic. The fervour with which Heaven’s Basement make heavy metal is admirable. Bon Jovi, Deftones and Papa Roach have all taken notice, and taken the band on tour. The band – Rob Ellershaw, on bass, completes the line-up – have their debut album out next month. : When did you become committed to rock? : I was given a guitar when I was four. I even used to take it to bed with me. It’s like a third nipple. : There’s a video of me playing drums to an Aerosmith song in my room when I’m six. I’ve got my top off and I’m using my bedside lamp as a spotlight. You’ve since traded up: one of your first gigs was at the City of Manchester Stadium. : Yes, it was, but we weren’t the main act. : Bon Jovi were on tour. A local radio station chose the support band; a prerequisite was that the band had to come from Manchester. We lied, and got the job. : They gave us 15 minutes, which wasn’t enough, from our point of view. : When Bon Jovi’s manager heard our soundcheck, they actually doubled the time we had on stage. You’ve got a reputation as a fantastic live band. What’s your secret? : What sets our favourite bands apart, like Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin and Aerosmith, is the magic they create when 70
they play. I’ve learnt how to sing and move on stage by watching Freddie Mercury. : The most important thing is not to do things by halves. If you want to break your guitar, then smash the living daylights out of it. If you want to dive into the crowd, hurl yourself right in.
Stage presence: frontman Aaron Buchanan and lead guitarist Sid Glover
How did you cope when your lead singer quit suddenly in 2010? : He walked out on us a week before we were due to go on tour, so we asked the frontman of a band we were friends with to step in at short notice. That guy lost his voice after a few concerts – at which point I grabbed the microphone myself without further ado. How did Aaron come on board? : We listened to hundreds of singers. We were looking for more than just an excellent frontman. We were looking for someone who was willing to give it his all, and we found that in Aaron. Were there initiation rituals? : Of course! First, he moved into the house we all lived in. Then we got him as drunk as possible to see what would happen, to make sure that he didn’t go
mad. He had to cheat his way past the security staff at a venue in Nottingham and get backstage. We had to be sure that he’d be willing to jump off a cliff for the band. If you don’t jump, you’ll never fly. Do you still all live together? : Yes, it brings us together. Other bands get cabin fever on the tour bus, or at the recording studio, but that doesn’t happen to us. For us, it’s the normal state of affairs, and it’s incredible how this blind trust and chemistry comes across on stage. People said that it was like Aaron had been in the band forever from the first shows we did with him. What about the times when things didn’t go right for you? : It wasn’t always easy. One time we ran out of money for food when we were on tour; we were so hungry, we stole chocolate bars from petrol stations. When we played with big bands, we’d sneak into their dressing room and eat the leftovers from their catering. It might sound bad, but in the end those are the adventures you most like reminiscing about. Now you’re only hungry for success. : Recently someone asked us what we’d do if people hated our records. I know that’s not going to happen. But I didn’t have to think for a second what our response would be: carry on doing the same thing. We’re in top form. We want to impress people with our live show – and it’s working. Our concerts are getting bigger and bigger every time. Debut album Filthy Empire (Red Bull Records) is released in February: www.heavensbasement.com You can watch the video of Heaven’s Basement’s session at the Red Bull Studio London on The Red Bulletin tablet app. Download it now for free
ADDITIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY: GETTY IMAGES
Words: Florian Obkircher Photography: Thomas Butler
Heaven’s Basement (left to right): Sid Glover, 24 (lead guitar); Rob ‘Bones’ Ellershaw, 25 (bass); Chris Rivers, 29 (drums); Aaron Buchanan, 22 (lead vocals)
PHOTOGRAPHY: SCOTT SERFAS
BACK TO THE ICE AGE
What it takes to provide, and conquer, the ice cross downhill world championship. Brace yourself for Red Bull Crashed Ice 2013 Words: Andreas Rottenschlager 73
â€œI like this kind of fighting, man against manâ€?
Track by track Five frozen venues on the tour Niagara Falls, Canada DECEMBER 1, 2012 Track length: 460m Elevation: 40m Highlight: 4 Hits Bridge in the midsection Podium: 1. Kyle Croxall; 2. Cameron Naasz; 3. Kilian Braun
Saint Paul, USA
JANUARY 26, 2013 Track length: 400m Elevation: 40m Highlight: Pete’s Corner in the midsection
The course at Niagara Falls (waterfall in the background)
1 BUILD A TRACK OUT OF ICE
PHOTOGRAPHY: JOERG MITTER (2), SCOTT SERFAS
The world’s most spectacular temporary race spaces Racing down a 500m-long half-pipe of ice at 60kph, rounding hairpin turns, jumping over obstacles, rushing past – or through, if you have to – three competitors built like your grandma’s wardrobe, then finally skating over the finish line. “I was bloody nervous,” says Kilian Braun, recalling his first Red Bull Crashed Ice competition, four years ago. His appearance lasted 10 seconds. “I collapsed at the first jump. Game over.” Things are different now. The 25-year-old Swiss skater is tipped for the title at the Red Bull Crashed Ice World Championship 2013. “I like this kind of fighting, man against man,” he says, “and
that you have to engage your brain on the track.” The brain behind the track of the championship’s first stop, in Niagara Falls in Canada, is Christian Papillon. The 35-year-old Canadian, the championship’s Sports Director, had 50 workers spend three weeks putting together 5,000 steel girders
and panels to form a construction 40m high and 460m long with an area of 26,500m2 (about four soccer pitches) covered with ice five times thicker than you’ll find on rinks used by US pro ice hockey league NHL. For 99.9 per cent of the world’s population, simply staying upright on skates along the track would be impossible. Papillon is challenging the best ice cross downhill athletes in the world, so he’s strewn the track with obstacles named with understatement: Kicker (“It hurls you up into the air,” says Papillon), Float Jumps (“The trajectory the athletes get here is nice”) and Step Ups (“Essentially they’re walls which suddenly spring up in front of them”). Is track-building an art form? “No,” says Papillon, “because here we’re building strictly to make competition.” And it’s some competition:
Force reckoned with: the Russian contingent opts for Star Wars style
FEBRUARY 9, 2013 Track length: 330m Elevation: 70m Premiere: First indoor race in Red Bull Crashed Ice history
MARCH 2, 2013 Track length: 440m Elevation: 50m Highlight: Spine Start on the start ramp
Quebec City, Canada
MARCH 16, 2013 Track length: 500m Elevation: 60m Highlight: Rollercoaster in the midsection
Red Bull Crashed Ice features groups of four skaters, each man ranged along a charm spectrum from wildcat to anti-tank vehicle, fighting it out in sudden-death races in five championship locations (see Track by track, above) until the finals in Canada’s Quebec City. This year, however, there is more than just one night of racing. The athletes also fight it out in team competitions on the evenings leading up to the finals: two three-man teams facing off on the track. In other words, six ice cross downhillers fighting in an ice canal about 4.5m wide, the same length as a medium-sized car. 75
2 UTILISE YOUR BODY In which manners are left at the starting gate. Or the hotel When Kyle Croxall folds his arms across his chest, it makes you wonder how much bicep a T-shirt can cope with. The reigning Red Bull Crashed Ice World Champion could pass as a bodybuilder: at 1.85m tall and weighing 97kg, his physique is right out of an anatomy textbook. His opponents say, “You can’t get past Kyle.” Croxall says, “Of course I use my body.” The Canadian isn’t a big one for chit-chat. In interviews he gives the impression that he’d rather be thundering a puck past a goalie or mistreating a leg press in the gym. “Ice cross downhill isn’t a hobby,” he 76
says, “I train all year round.” Croxall is a fireman in Calgary. Every evening he sweats it out with his
colleagues in the weight room, all the while getting inspiration from his iPod: country from Luke Bryan to relax, rap-metal from Rage Against The Machine to get worked up. And yet, he says, “Before the race I relax. Too much adrenalin is bad for performance.” The Croxalls are a sporting family. Croxall and younger brother Scott were streaking
across their ice hockey field in the family’s garden as kids. Both are excellent water-skiers, on skis or barefoot. This combination puts the Croxalls in good stead in Red Bull Crashed Ice; Croxall was world champion last year, Scott was third in the overall rankings. And Croxall goes into the next season as favourite. His formula for success is physical dominance, six years’ Red Bull Crashed Ice experience and cast-iron confidence on skates. What makes him better than the rest? “I want to win.” But everyone wants to win. “Then you have to want it more than the others.” It’s as simple as that? Croxall grins.
Premier win: Kyle Croxall delights in victory at Niagara Falls, the opening round of the 2013 competition
PHOTOGRAPHY: JOERG MITTER (6), SCOTT SERFAS (2), BALAZS GARDI
Kyle ‘The Tank’ Croxall leads on the icy battlefield of Niagara Falls
3 THINK LIKE NAPOLEON How to prepare for an event you can’t prepare for Anyone taking part in Red Bull Crashed Ice has to confront a basic problem: how do you train for a sport whose track only exists for the duration of the competition? Top American racer Cameron Naasz relies on asphalt. “I run inline-skate races against my friends,” he says. “We reach up to 55kph and practice competitive situations.” Fabien Mels, Germany’s tower of power, has a different methodology. “When I’m iceskating I pull a sports utility tyre behind me on a rope. That builds up the legs.” A third way is practised by Adam Horst of Canada. “We look for frozen lakes where the ice is as fragile as the track toward the end of the meet.” All of the leading Red Bull Crashed Ice competitors have Breathing space, the Red Bull Crashed Ice way: flying Finn Miikka Jouhkimainen
several years’ experience in ice hockey, some of them at a professional level. And there’s one more thing which helps: being a little bit nuts. “All of us are crazy in our own way,” says Naasz, who is studying public relations at St Cloud University in St Paul, Minnesota. Before his first Crashed Ice race, he marched into his professor’s office and said, “I want to race against three maniacs in front of 100,000 fans down an ice canal. I need three days off.” The professor said yes. On January 26, Naasz will race on his home turf in front of the Renaissance-style cathedral of St Paul. Before the start of the race, he’ll retreat somewhere quiet, get out his MP3 player and listen to motivational speeches through the headphones.
Biting the ice: Dutchman Remo Speijers (red shirt) extricates himself from Canadians Brian Schack (left) and Travis Nagata
Naasz’s favourite text comes from YouTube: enter “2nd place motivational” in the search bar, and play the NHL video that comes up in the top position of the results. It’s only two minutes long, and it will likely lift anyone out of their comfort zone. The core message: “If you think second place ain’t such a bad deal, why don’t you ask Napoleon how he felt about coming second at Waterloo?”
Speed kings A quintet of possible winners for 2013 Kyle Croxall
CANADA Stable in the air, steady on his legs, built like a tank: the defending champion from Calgary will not give up his crown without a struggle.
FINLAND The 2011 world champ is Croxall’s number one challenger. A former track-and-field athlete, on the ice he favours technique over body contact.
SWITZERLAND Red Bull Crashed Ice Sports Director Christian Papillon’s pick has had years of freeskiing experience. A favourite obstacle? “I like them all.”
CANADA Looking to escape his brother’s shadow. Messed up the debut race in Niagara Falls, dropping out in the preliminary rounds. But still dangerous
GERMANY Excellent skating ability combined with a strong physique and healthy self-confidence. “Who’s going to beat Kyle? Me, of course.”
PHOTOGRAPHY: ANDREAS SCHAAD, BALAZS GARDI
“What applies on a regular racetrack does not apply here”
4 FALL LIKE A CHAMPION Surprise tactic for a winning run: land flat on your face Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada, early December, the premiere of the Red Bull Crashed Ice ice cross downhill world championship 2013. The track is less than 500m from the world-famous waterfalls. Fantastic views for the spectators. Not that the athletes in the start house care. They lunge in groups of four from the foot of the Skylon Tower, through the ice canal and towards the scenic route of the Niagara Parkway road, which winds alongside the River Niagara. In total, the icy course stretches for about 460m. After a series of sudden-death races in the competition proper, only the first two athletes placed in each group go into the next round. The crowd roars: Canadian Shane Nuttley, in third place, dips to get his head across the line so he steals second place, but he’s still eliminated because it isn’t the first helmet to cross the finishing line which counts, but the first skate, and so he stays in third. What applies on a regular sprint track does not apply here. Shortly after 10pm, the best four meet in the final.
Reigning champion Kyle Croxall manoeuvres with the vehemence of a combat tank to move from fourth to first. As early as the starting ramp, he swoops around his fallen countryman Adam Horst. In the midsection Croxall also falls flat on his face, but gets up straight away and crawls over Kilian Braun, who is lying on the ice. The Swiss can only stare in bewilderment as Croxall sprints away again. “That’s what it’s all about,” says race director Christian Papillon, before adding a tip for spectators. “Watch very closely what the competitors do when they fall. Winners pick themselves up straight away and hardly lose speed; others fall again immediately afterwards because they’re so nervous.” After his spill, Croxall has American ace Cameron Naasz in his sights. Kyle waits until a 90-degree right-hand bend, then strikes like lightning: fast switch to the inside, shoulder outwards. Four seconds of power skating, and Naasz doesn’t stand a chance. Croxall crosses the line. Victory. Next race, January 26: www.redbullcrashedice.com
Above: Party time at the finish line at Niagara Falls. Left: Mid-race mayhem with (from left) Adam Horst, Kilian Braun, Cameron Naasz and Kyle Croxall
JANUARY – 2013 ISSUE 72
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PAIGE HAREB CATRIONA WILLIAMS
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Contents 82 TRAVEL Heliskiing on Russia’s eastern tip Photographer Ernst Koschier plunges the depths to shoot with the fishes: more on page 84
84 GET THE GEAR High-tech tools of an underwater snapper 86 WORK OUT How to train like a top soccer player 88 THE SOUNDS OF 2013 The ethereal dream pop of Watercolours
PHOTOGRAPHY: ERNST KOSCHIER
90 NIGHTLIFE Everything you need to get you through ’til dawn 94 WORLD IN ACTION What’s coming up in sport and culture 96 SAVE THE DATE Events for the diary 98 MIND’S EYE With columnist Russell Brown
MORE BODY & MIND
A permanent snowy landscape: Kamchatka is a skiing lover’s paradise
SPECTACULAR TRAVEL ADVENTURES
KAMCHATKA, RUSSIA Lovers of great snow head for the heliskiing at Russia’s eastern edge, with an eye on rumbling volcanoes and frozen hair. Even the journey there is epic
The turbines on the huge Mi-8 helicopter make a deafening racket. An artificial snowstorm blots out the sun and the walls of the Hotel Antarius in Paratunka, in Russia’s Far East, begin to shudder. For the guests at the hotel, this is the sign that they have their first day on the slopes in Kamchatka ahead of them. A day of skiing on the Russian peninsula offering fluffy, super-fine, powdery snow, metres deep, and fantastic downhill slopes stretching from altitudes of 3,000m down to the beaches and fjords of the Pacific Ocean. Most skiers here have taken the world’s longest domestic flight just to arrive on the snow: eight-and-a half hours, from Moscow to PetropavlovskKamchatsky, the region’s largest city and administrative centre. Although 82
most visitors are from Russia, natives of ski-loving countries like France and Germany are also well represented here. The total area covering the Kamchatka peninsula is bigger than the UK and it is hemmed in by the North Pacific Ocean, the Sea of Okhotsk and the Bering Sea; its exposed position the reason for the wonderful quality of its snow. The skiing area accessible by helicopter is the size of Switzerland: mountain ranges stretching for 800km, from the island of Paramushir in the south to the volcanoes of Shiveluch and Alney in the north, with a neverending choice of downhill routes. The snow here falls from the sky in big, fat flakes, and can fall so much that those out skiing are endangered. Safety and avalanche
training – how to use things such as folding shovels, collapsible probes, avalanche transceivers and rucksacks with inflating airbags – is given on the helipad, which, although covered in deep snow, is the only open, flat area near the hotel. Otherwise, on all sides, the place is surrounded by birch forests. After the training, Russian sparkling wine and biscuits are served by the pool, which is steaming, as are the volcanoes on the horizon Unfortunately, the first day turns out to be a so-called ‘down day’, when the helicopter can’t fly due to the snow. So
Not all the locals are approachable
WORDS: BARBARA GRUBER, OLIVER NITZ. PHOTOGRAPHY: ANDREY BRITANISHSKĲ (2), FRANÇOIS-R. THEVENET (4)
The helicopter waits in the valley below to take skiers to the next departure point the skiers head for the Krasnaya Sopka ski resort, with its view of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky harbour and the ice-breakers out on the horizon in the North Pacific. An old ski-lift, marked ‘made in Czechoslovakia’, clanks jerkily uphill. The journey down is through more birch forest on an unprepared slope; there are no such things as snow groomers here. In the evening, a trip to the fish market yields red caviar. Back at the hotel, some relax in the sauna with a bottle of Kamchatsky Pivo, the local beer; others watch an opera on TV in a communal room with its wonderfully comfy sofa. The next morning is not a down day. The Mi-8 transport helicopter, a shuttle bus in the sky, takes the group to the summit intact. Skiers jump out in turn and are given a few final tips from the ski guides. It is eerily quiet after the helicopter leaves, when for a short while the air smells of powdery snow and gunpowder. The volcano smouldering in the distance adds a whiff of sulphur vapour. After the skiers hear the word “go” from the guides, they head off, separately, down varied courses spread out before them, which converge in troughs and valleys far below. The helicopter is waiting down in the valley to take them to the next departure point. Though most of the talk runs something like, “That was the best run in my life!” the next downhill turns out to be even more spectacular. On the flight back to the hotel, when everyone is out of breath and out of energy, it becomes clear why swimming gear was added to the list of things to bring. The helicopter lands in the middle of snowy nowhere, more precisely Nalychevo, a thermal spring with a small wooden bathhouse. Everyone is given a bathing cap, otherwise their hair would freeze. Beer and fish is served, and the stresses of the day melt away in the steam, the smiles and snowball fights. And then, the day’s greatest problem arises: the water has warmed feet so much that they can’t fit back into ski boots that have frozen solid. It is a tiny torture after a fantastic day’s skiing.
Forget ski-lifts: the only way to get around here is by an Mi-8 helicopter
HELISKIING IN KAMCHATKA Getting there An eight-and-a-halfhour flight from Moscow to PetropavlovskKamchatsky, the capital of the Kamchatka region of Russia. The ski resorts are about an hour’s drive outside the city. The green here is a forest of birch trees
Russian après-ski: smoked fish
Terrain Kamchatka has slopes of all levels of difficulty. The big downhills are positioned among active volcanoes – the largest, Klyuchevskaya Sopka, is 4,750m high – at altitudes of 500m-3,000m, and come down to sea level through forests
and over glaciers. Tour organisers Heliski Russia (www. heliski-russia.com), Vertikalny Mir (www. vertikalny-mir.com) and Arlberg Alpin (www. arlbergalpin.at) offer a range of packages including full-board accommodation, helicopter time and skiing led by experienced mountain guides. Formalities You’ll need to apply for a Russian tourist visa (valid for 30 days).
Not just mountains, but volcanoes here too
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GET THE GEAR A PRO’S ESSENTIALS
Sea snapper ERNST KOSCHIER The underwater photographer from Austria needs a boatload of high-tech equipment to take pictures of his shy subjects
1. Seacam Superdome port I use this when I want to get a split shot – an image that is half above water and half below. The dome is made out of high-strength, light metal and is perfect for fisheye lenses and wide-angle zooms. 2. ReefNet SubSee magnifying lens, dioptre 10+ Most fish don’t appreciate having a camera shoved in their faces. I can use these plug-in lenses with the Macro Port and they’ll give me 3.5x magnification, meaning I can shoot them from a distance. 3. TillyTec LED W26 back-up light (and batteries) Unlike air, water absorbs light and the deeper you go, the more colour you lose. To compensate, I use these LED lamps. They’re waterproof to a depth of 200m and are very bright with a luminosity of 6,000 lux, comparable to a 25-watt halogen bulb.
wear two. The computer provides all the essential information to keep me safe on the shoot and during the return to the surface . 7. SEACAM camera housing The Bentley of underwater camera housings, this is my most valued companion. It weighs almost 3kg and is made of a twice-hardened, surfacedensified, anodised alloy. It’s just about unbreakable.
9. INON Z-240 V-4 flash I like these because they are small and manageable. The light makes focusing easier. For close-ups of shy creatures, you can put a red lens in front of the bright focus light.
4. Nikon D800E camera This 36-megapixel camera can produce amazing shots, even in poor light. The housing is robust, essential for surviving 230 hours a year underwater.
10. Nautilus lifeline A waterproof emergency call system with GPS and radio can be a lifesaver. It’s always in my jacket pocket when I dive.
5. Scubapro Seawing Nova Gorilla fins I’ll usually take about 20kg of equipment down with me, and that means moving around or reacting quickly can be problematic. These light elastomer fins propel me through the water with minimum effort and are very good against strong currents.
11. Atomic Aquatics STi regulator Not all regulators are as light as this one, plus it ensures consistent breath resistance – even if I’m upside down at any depth.
6. Suunto D6 diving computer On long, repetitive dives, my safety depends on my diving watch, which is why I always
8. Kowalski LED 620 torch This 20-watt diving torch is made from seawater-resistant aluminium. A dimmer switch can take the brightness from 20 to 100 per cent, plus the battery lasts for around 70 minutes.
12. Atomic Aquatics mask Nothing matters if I can’t see properly. This custom-built mask is distortion-free and made of soft silicon, so it fits my face perfectly. www.ernstkoschier.com
Ernst Koschier’s expeditions to Indonesia, South Seas and Papua New Guinea can last up to six months. He’s chalked up over 3,000 dives since 1983
PHOTOGRAPHY: PHILIPP FORSTNER
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WORK, REST AND PLAY During the season, down-time is as important as training to ensure Neymar is on perfect form for each 90-minute match. “When we don’t have matches we do a lot more gym work,” he says, “but during the season a lot of your training comes on the pitch.”
WORK OUT TRAINING WITH THE PROS
NEYMAR DA SILVA SANTOS JÚNIOR
There’s no going backwards when it comes to being a forward: the goal-happy Brazilian footballer, 20, trains constantly to stay on top of his game The man known simply as Neymar is no stranger to tough training sessions. He’s had a football at his feet for as long as he can remember and joined São Paulo club Santos FC, with which he shares a name, at the tender age of 11. Fast forward to 2013 and he’s one of the world’s most talented players, having scored more than 100 goals for Santos since making his debut for the senior team in 2009. He also helped the Brazilian national side to a silver medal at the 2012 London Olympics. But it’s not as easy as he makes it look. “It’s a lot of hard work,” he says. “As much as it can appear like we are just having fun – which in my case is also true – there’s a lot of training involved, which means constant commitment and sacrifice. “When I’m not playing or training for Santos, I’m with the Brazil team, so training and matches dominate all my time. It means being away from the family, which is hard, especially Davi Lucca [Neymar’s 15-month-old son]. I also wish I could eat what I like, but as we have matches almost every weekend we must eat a balanced diet, with protein, carbs and salads, every single day. But essentially, I think that doing what you love is the key to great performance, and I love playing football. This is my job, but it’s also lots of fun.” 86
FRIDAY 10am: Breakfast 11am: Tactical training on the field with teammates 12pm: Technical training 1pm: Lunch Afternoon: Rest 7pm: Dinner
TUESDAY 9am: Breakfast 10-11am: Tactical training on the field with teammates 11am-12pm: Technical training – working alone or in small groups on shooting, passing, dribbling and other technical skills. 12pm: Lunch Afternoon: Rest 7pm: Dinner
SATURDAY 9am: Breakfast 10am: Coach’s speech 11am-12pm: Rest 12pm: Lunch Afternoon: Rest 3.30pm: Snack 6.30pm: Match SUNDAY Day off
WEDNESDAY 9am: Breakfast 10am: Coach’s speech 11am: Rest 12pm: Lunch Afternoon: Rest 6pm: Snack 9pm: Match THURSDAY Rest and recuperation until… 3pm: Jogging around the field 4pm: Hydrotherapy using water jets for an intense massage to aid muscle recovery. 7pm: Dinner
Check out Neymar’s skills in The Red Bulletin tablet app. Download it now for free
WORDS: RUTH MORGAN. PHOTOGRAPHY: GETTY IMAGES, PICTUREDESK.COM
The hopes of a nation are pinned on Neymar shooting Brazil to World Cup glory in 2014
MONDAY Morning: Rest Noon: Lunch 1-4pm: Rest 4-5.30pm: Tactical training on the field with teammates 5.30-7pm: 11-a-side practice 7pm: Dinner
MUST-HAVES! PRIMAL EARTH NATURAL ACTIVE SPF 15 MOISTURISER Make sure your skin is prepared for the great outdoors with Primal Earth Moisturiser with SPF 15. For naturally healthy skin, start with natural active ingredients powered by plants including skin-conditioning Aloe Vera, Green Tea and calming Harakeke. This moisturiser is naturally formulated to hydrate, smooth and protect sensitive skin. It shields against harmful UVA and UVB rays, leaves no greasy residue, goes on smoothly and protects all day. Available from all good supermarkets and online at www. primalearth.co.nz, RRP $13.99. “When I’m heading out for a day on the water I’m always conscious of my environment. I’ve paddled in over 30 different countries and I understand the danger that the New Zealand sun presents to my skin. To ensure I’m protected, I use Primal Earth Moisturiser with SPF 15” – kayak legend Ben Brown. 1
2 SONY ACTION CAM Discover your sense of adventure with the new Action Cam from Sony. This ultracompact Full HD video camera is perfect for extreme sports and point-of-view shooting. Whether you’re into hiking, biking, snorkelling, surfing or sky-diving the Sony Action Cam will capture your moments of glory forever. Weighing just 90g with supplied battery, the ultra-compact Action Cam is so light and small you’ll not even notice it when you’re out on the slopes, underwater or biking in the dirt. When the action’s over, watch it back on your smartphone using the PlayMemories Mobile app and Action Cam’s built-in Wi-Fi. No cables, no hook-ups. Just you, in full flow.
3 FIT WIFI ARF COMPLETE BIKE All you ever wanted in a BMX straight out of the box. Pieced together with products like the Wifi Ltd Frame, Inman bars, Blade2 forks and Indent cranks, the Wifi complete is the best-value high-end complete on the market. Available at selected retailers, RRP$1,799.
www.triplesix.co.nz 4 ANARCHY WINES Anarchy is the slick new wine brand by the innovative Revolution Wine Co. The packaging is simple yet symbolic and sure to turn heads at gatherings this summer. Their tasty Central Otago Pinot Noir and Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc are wines worth pursuing.
revolutionwineco.com 5 THE DIRTYMAN SKINCARE RANGE Super Smooth Shave Gel, Fast Absorbing Moisturiser, Foaming Face Wash, Sun Beating SPF 30 Moisturiser and Grunty Scrub are crafted around Aloe Vera, long renowned for its healing qualities, and are free of parabens. Quality Kiwi made skincare for blokes, RRP$8.99-$11.99 and available from selected supermarkets and at
Chelsea Jade Metcalf was inspired by The Spice Girls as a child; now she cites Jenny Lewis and Lykke Li in her list of influences
Numbers by painting
ACTS TO WATCH IN 2013 #1
WATERCOLOURS The artist formerly known as Chelsea Jade makes pop songs with passion and is fazed by nothing – not even someone else releasing her debut LP
Under is Chelsea Jade Metcalf’s debut single as Watercolours
Dancer, busker, blogger, photographer, rock chick, artist, model, musician: Chelsea Jade Metcalf has packed a lot into her 23 years. She calls herself “a jack of all trades, master of none” and claims to be “musically incompetent”. The critics disagree, however, and, as Watercolours, she’s been creating quite a stir with her ethereal dream-pop and stylish stage shows. Metcalf is the kind of girl who gets stopped on the street in New York to be photographed for a fashion blog (the picture ended up in Australian Vogue). She’s also the kind of girl who
has Auckland musos falling over themselves to collaborate with her. Some of the artists she has worked with include James Duncan, Justyn Pilbrow from Elemeno P, Alistair Deverick from The Ruby Suns, Artisan Guns, Homebrew and The Veils. “I really don’t know where all this attention is coming from,” she says, during some downtime in the Red Bull Studio in Auckland. “It’s surprising and encouraging and a bit harrowing, because it means I have to take responsibility for what I’m doing now.” In the past, Metcalf has walked away from creative responsibility, not least when twice dropping out
of art school. Yet it was an art school project in 2009, one originally intended as a joke, which proved to be her musical Eureka moment. The two other girls in her band, Teacups, were busy with other things, so Metcalf decided to confront her musical incompetence head on by recording an EP on her own. “I hated art school, and music was the thing I enjoyed most,” says Metcalf. “Before that project, I was really good at writing lyrics and melodies, but I had to rely on other people to write the music.” She gave away the EP, This Is About Activity, to readers of her blog, Willowships, and was
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WORDS: ROBERT TIGHE. PHOTOGRAPHY: KRISTIAN FRIRES, SCOTT SINTON
“Someone told me that they turn off the street lights when they walk past them. So I tried to explore that in a song” surprised and encouraged by the positive feedback. She decided that, in spite of her self-perceived shortcomings as a musician – “I don’t play any instrument properly, but can successfully make sounds come out of them” – the music she made had a positive effect on her, as well as her fledgling fanbase. “I feel music is the only effective way to eloquently express myself,” she says. “I love writing lyrics. I love refining my ideas. It’s almost a science, trying to be succinct with what you’re saying. I torture myself trying to get my lyrics just right. The words are so important to me; I never want to have a throwaway lyric.” One of the songs she worked on at the Red Bull Studios, Auckland, produced by Jeremy Toy of fellow NZ band, She’s So Rad, is provisionally called Sliders. It’s about people who apparently cause street light interference, aka SLI. “It plays on this idea that there are people in the world who have so much energy emanating from them they can turn off street lamps when they walk past,” says Metcalf. “I was chatting to someone recently and they said, ‘That happens to me. I’m a SLI-der.’ I have jealous tendencies, and when I get jealous I get really angry and storm off home. I imagined being so full of rage that you could turn off street lamps and I tried to explore that in a song.” Popular music would not exist without its makers’ takes on jealousy and relationships, and Watercolours’ work is no exception. “Yeah, tragically. It’s typical, right? But I think it’s important to talk about your own experiences. Authenticity is something that’s missing in a lot of pop music.” Metcalf is proud to be pop. “I went to a gig recently and someone asked me what kind
of music I played. I told her I played pop music and she was like, ‘Hmmmm, guess it pays the bills.’ But there’s a distinction between cheesy and quality pop. I love what Lykke Li does. She makes really poppy songs with interesting sounds and she’s not afraid of space.” Metcalf’s approach to her craft is unconventional. She records random sounds – such as those made by an air conditioner, a subway, a waterfall – on a dictaphone, and then manipulates and loops and layers the sounds to create an atmosphere, a canvas for her heartfelt, sensual, swooning vocals. “I feel like I’ve got good musical instincts. I like certain sounding chords and there’s a particular sound I like, a particular femininity that I try to extract from various instruments. There’s something about the tones of a woman’s voice that I really connect with.” She cites St Vincent, Feist and Sucré as influences and inspiration. “Sucré is this lady called Stacy Dupree-King,” says Metcalf. “She released an album with her husband last year and it’s just beautiful. She kind of made my record before I did.” Metcalf plans to release the video for her single Night Swimmer early this year. The promo was made possible by a NZ $10,000 grant from the broadcasting funding agency NZ On Air, after the song won an ‘unreleased’ music vote on The Audience, a new music website. She also has enough material for a couple of EPs and hopes to start working on her debut album later this year. And that is the scale of her master plan. “I just realise I’ve been winging it, this whole thing,” she says, and you almost believe her. “I don’t know how I weaselled my way into all this stuff.”
Metcalf/Watercolours at the Red Bull Studios, Auckland
Need to know THE LINE-UP Chelsea Jade Metcalf – vocals, sample gathering, keys, floor tom, programming The Watercolours live band: Jonathan Pearce – keys Reuben Stephens – bass Liz Stokes – trumpet Dave Parker – guitar Alistair Deverick – drums Holly Fullbrook, Mimsy Cable – backing vocals DISCOGRAPHY Chelsea Jade: This Is About Activity (EP, 2009) Chelsea Learns To Share (EP, 2009) Teacups: Forest Fiction (album, 2010) Watercolours: Under (single, 2011) Night Swimmer (single, 2013)
The story so far Chelsea Jade Metcalf isn’t ashamed to admit that her first musical obsession was the Spice Girls. Juiced by Girl Power, she formed her first band, Emerald T, when she was just seven years old. By the time she entered her teens, her musical tastes included indie acts like Rilo Kiley, Beth Ditto and 50 Foot Wave. Rejected for a singing part in her high school’s production of West Side Story, she was asked by a rock band formed by schoolmates, A.D.D., to join them as their lead singer. Soon after, the group made the top six of the 2006 Rockquest talent competition. Metcalf quit and began busking with a friend, Elizabeth Stokes, at Auckland’s Botany Town Centre. The pair played covers of tracks by Rilo Kiley vocalist Jenny Lewis, while Metcalf made up lyrics about the shoppers passing by, oblivious to the freestyling. The buskers became a band, Teacups, when they were joined by a mutual friend, Talita Setyady. Metcalf released solo EPS in 2009, before Teacups released an album, Forest Fiction, in 2010, after which they disbanded. In 2011, Metcalf released Under, her first single as Watercolours. In October 2012, she won the New Zealand Music Critics Choice Award, following in the footsteps of Kimbra, Homebrew and The Naked And Famous. www.facebook.com/chelseajadeiswatercolours
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Nightlife Whatever gets you through ’til dawn
The ’90s revival princess
Ski World Cup, Moscow
Charli XCX As stylish as she is self-assured, this 20-year-old purveyor of melancholic angel pop loves the Spice Girls and will gladly give Coldplay pointers about stage presence She is a woman on the verge of a breakthrough. Charli XCX, says the blogosphere, is the new Lykke Li. She's also good enough to open for world’sbiggest bands, say Coldplay; they took her on their European tour. All this before her debut album’s out. Along with the likes of Sky Ferreira and Grimes, she’s one of a bunch of new female musicians who are combining kitschy pop with the avant-garde. The Spice Girls and experimental electronica don’t have to be mutually exclusive: Charli XCX’s dark synth pop hymns prove that. THE RED BULLETIN: Do you like being described as a leading light of the ’90s revival? CHARLI XCX: I was always a big fan of the Spice Girls. When I was little, I wanted to be their sixth member. I really love the cheesy pop music from that period, but also grunge and the cyber-rave culture. What's your favourite fashion relic from that era? It’s Buffalos [platform trainers], but I also like that really bad braids and shell suits are coming back into fashion. Has this soft spot for the ’90s left its mark on your album? Yes. Even though my music doesn't really sound that ’90s. I think of The mixtape Super Ultra is out now; the debut album is due in February: www.charlixcxmusic.com
my music as melancholic angel pop. Did Coldplay singer Chris Martin give you career tips? No, but he complimented me on my music. Actually, I gave him advice. He has this cool dance step which he’d only do once during the show. I said to him: “It’s really gangster, you should do that more!” I think he stopped doing it after that.
FOLLOW-UP: On January 29, a FIS World Cup race will take place in Luzhniki Park, the area around Russia’s largest stadium in the centre of Moscow. LAUNCH PAD: The 16 best men and women on the World Cup starting list will battle it out in instantknockout rounds on a steel-frame piste 56m high. RUG UP: Fans and competitors take heed: temperatures in Moscow can drop as low as a bone-chilling -40°C at this time of year.
THEY SAID IT...
“Walking at night is the best way to get ideas” JK Rowling, author
Wellness January is the traditional month of detox. Drinking the creamy, ice-cold Wellness is the equivalent of two yoga sessions and a weekend’s fasting. Probably. It certainly feels like it’s doing good on the way down, leading a trickle of refreshing wellbeing along your spine. Kombucha tea is said to help liver function, while the pineapple juice contains a performance-enhancing burst of vitamins and minerals. Honey and plain yoghurt deliver a natural energy kick. It certainly tastes delicious – which many things supposed to be good for you do not.
CLUB OF THE
WORDS: FLORIAN OBKIRCHER, ULRICH CORAZZA. PHOTOGRAPHY: IMAGO, CLUB ELEVEN (4), FOTOSTUDIO EISENHUT & MAYER
CLUB ELEVEN B1F/B2F Thesaurus Nishiazabu 1-10-11 Nishiazabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-0031 Japan www.go-to-eleven.com
10/10 with a plus one Eleven Behind the giant neon lights of party neighbourhood Roppongi, you’ll find the hidden pearl of Tokyo’s nightlife
The club's name refers to… The number of people working here when we opened the club. Also, we love the rock comedy film This Is Spinal Tap, and its legendary amps that “go up to 11”. Oh, and our address is 1-10-11. You will find us in… Nishi-Azabu, not too far from the party district of Roppongi. It’s more of a residential area. The club is located
INGREDIENTS 80ml kombucha tea 40ml pineapple juice 50ml plain yoghurt crushed ice 2tsp honey optional garnish: edible flowers
METHOD Put the tea, juice, yoghurt and ice into a blender, then add the honey (it goes in last, otherwise it sticks to the bottom of the jug). Blend until smooth. Pour into a glass and garnish with flowers
a bit far from train stations and due to that, not too many kids come around. Eleven, rather, is for adults. Our regulars are… Not just party lovers, but dedicated lovers of music. A lot of our guests understand music very well. The craziest night was… At the club's opening. We had 1,500 people in – and that was on a weeknight. The DJ was Studio 54 house legend François K. Let's talk about the bathrooms for a moment, because… We put in more women’s loos, so that the ladies don’t have to spend so long standing in line. We usually start really going… From one o’clock in the morning, when there are usually about 800 people already on the dancefloor. Patrons can chill out in… Our upstairs lounge, on sofas secretly located behind the stairs. Interview: Yuko Ichikawa, owner
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DIAMOND VIBRATO GUITAR PEDAL “This is used with pretty much all of the guitars on Lonerism. It wobbles the pitch and makes the guitar sound like a rickety little boat on the ocean. It’s a woozy sound that you’ll hear throughout the album, a kind of seasick vibe which gives the impression that the whole thing is about to fall over. It also made the bass sound like a hungry stomach, which was weird but cool.”
‘Sounds like shooting lasers’ Tame Impala The Australian band rebooting the ’70s with psychedelic sounds far groovier than the originals. Kevin Parker, the band's leader, declassifies his secret studio weapons Tame Impala’s latest album, Lonerism, is a collection of songs blowing in on dreamy electronic breezes, thick with otherworldly orchestration. Making a record like this requires a musical palette of many colours, and a lot of kit. The band’s lead singer and main songwriter, the multi-instrumentalist Kevin Parker, painted his groovy psychedelic vistas in Paris, recording most of the album there on his own, and indulging fully his love of vintage instruments and equipment. With total commitment to the music, something else had to give. “I had my whole studio freighted over from Australia,” he says. “So there I was, in this tiny apartment, unable to move for wires, instruments and production equipment. I was basically sleeping on the amps.” Parker, a self-confessed guitar geek and effects wonk, will also tell you that his much-travelled gadgets are tools of discovery in a never-ending quest for new sonic experiences. “As long as there are undiscovered sounds, I’ll never stop searching and experimenting.” Here, the chief Impala identifies the three most important pieces of equipment used in the making of the album. Lonerism (Modular Recordings) is out now: ww.tameimpala.com
SEQUENTIAL CIRCUITS PRO-ONE SYNTHESIZER “An analogue synth from the 1980s. I fell in love with it from the moment I first touched a key. It sounds like it’s shooting laser beams. A lot of the lead lines on the album are played on this. I never buy instruments specifically for a song, but this just seemed to fit perfectly on all of them. I paid over the odds for it, though, after a bidding war on eBay. I couldn’t let it go.”
DBX 165A COMPRESSOR “Another gem from the 1980s. This compressor makes the drums sound like bombs going off. It’s like Led Zeppelin’s John Bonham playing a hip-hop beat. Just a monstrous sound, like you’ve stuck a microphone up the backside of a drum kit. The 165A is a sonic doomsday weapon. I don’t use it to control the volume; I set it tightly and aggressively, and that way, the drums become really urgent and immediate.”
Zanzibar Samosas In Stone Town, the heart of Zanzibar’s capital city, the favourite street food is an Indian import from over the sea MAKING SAMOSA FIT The dough for samosas is a mix of wheat flour, water, salt and oil. It is rolled out into rectangular shapes, which are folded at the corners, filled and then folded again before being sealed and fried. The filling is usually vegetarian: potato and chickpea with onion, or a vegetable curry spiced with cumin and mixed herbs. The triangular patties are served piping hot and accompanied by chutneys.
Words: Nick Amies, Klaus kamholz. photography: getty images, dbx, diamond, pro-one, Fotostudio Eisenhut & Mayer
IN THE FORODHANI GARDENS When the sun goes down in the Forodhani Gardens, on the edge of Stone Town, the street traders set up food stalls. A ramble through the night market might not be as mouthwatering as expected, as you will see meat lying unrefrigerated on tables and pre-grilled fish waiting to be reheated before serving. But the samosas are a safe bet, veggie or not, because they come out of the fat fresh and hot.
FIRST SAMOSAs, then party Kendwa Beach, an hour’s drive north of Stone Town, is one of Zanzibar’s most popular beaches. Full-moon parties, which go on until dawn, are often held here. Taxis and buses shuttle groups of postprandial people from the market to the edge of the Indian Ocean – across which the samosa has established itself as a staple on two continents.
a triangular world Samosas are also a central part of Goan cuisine. In parts of the Middle East and Africa, samosas are known as sambusas, and in Portuguese-influenced countries – from Mozambique to Brazil – they’re called chamuças and often filled with lamb or chicken.
SAMOSAS: A POLITICAL ISSUE That samosas are now widely enjoyed in Western culture has been viewed with suspicion by some. In 2011, an extreme Islamist rebel group controlling a small town north of Mogadishu, in Somalia, banned samosas, because their three-sided shape is also a Christian symbol representing the Holy Trinity.
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World In Action January/ February 2013
Sport 11-27.01.2013, SPAIN
Handball World Championships The battle to be crowned the world’s best male handball team takes place every two years, with this year’s tournament staged in Spain. The top 24 handball nations will clash over 76 matches, in six different cities, with the final held at the 16,500-seater Palau Sant Jordi Arena in Barcelona. The defending champions are France, who also won gold at the 2012 Olympic Games.
9 22-27.01.2013, KITZBUHEL, AUSTRIA
FIS Men’s Skiing World Cup
The Hahnenkamm races are a fixture on the World Cup tour watched by more than 100,000 spectators each year. The highlight of the weekend is the 3,313m downhill race on the Streif course, said to be the world’s most difficult. Anyone who wins goes down in history as a skiing great. After the retirement of Didier Cuche of Switzerland, who took victory in the last five downhills, there’s been much speculation about who has what it takes to be the new champion.
2 Aksel Lund Svindal battling with the Streif 24-27.01.2013, BUTTERMILK MOUNTAIN, ASPEN, USA
France’s men are the dominant force in handball
Winter X Games XVII
WRC Monte Carlo Rally First run in 1911, this is one of motorsport’s classic events, alongside the Le Mans 24 Hours and the Indianapolis 500. The weather has a big impact: if it’s dry, it makes bombing along the tarmac a pleasure; if it rains or snows, it’s diabolically slippery. The highlight of the rally is the night stage over the Col de Turini, an Alpine pass littered with hairpin bends.
The biggest stars of the freestyle skiing, snowboarding and snowmobile scenes consider an X Games medal a sufficiently enticing incentive to come up with daring new tricks. At last year’s event, Shaun White, who already had 11 golds, scored the maximum-possible 100 points with a perfect superpipe run in the final. In the Snowboard Big Air, Canada’s Mark McMorris and Torstein Horgmo of Norway both completed triple-corks (spins on three axes). McMorris pipped Horgmo to the gold.
Tricky tarmac in the French Alps
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A blaze of colour at the Filipino Mardi Gras 17-27.01.2013, CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND 13.01.2013, LOS ANGELES, USA
The Golden Globes kicks off the awards season for the 70th year running. Presented by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the globe statuette is one of the industry’s highest-profile prizes and is a good gauge for who will win at the Academy Awards in February. One of this year’s award-winners is already known; Jodie Foster will be the fourth-youngest actress in history to be given a lifetime achievement award.
03.02.2013, MERCEDES-BENZ SUPERDOME, NEW ORLEANS, USA
Super Bowl XLVII
Last year, around 800 million people watched the New York Giants beat the New England Patriots 21-17 in Indianapolis – the largest TV audience for a one-day sporting event. New Orleans will be the venue for the 47th NFL final. It’s the 10th time the city has hosted the Super Bowl, tying with Miami for the most Super Bowls staged. R&B star Beyoncé Knowles’ performance during the half-time show has been confirmed and, despite current economic problems, TV advertising records are expected to be broken, with each 30-second slot going for almost US$4 million.
PHOTOGRAPHY: DDPIMAGES, GETTY IMAGES (3), PICTUREDESK.COM (2)
World Buskers Festival The best buskers in the world congregate every year at the World Buskers Festival, which in 2013 is celebrating it’s 20th anniversary. It features a line-up of old- and new-school street performers, including 30 international acts from nine different countries. Shows are staged both indoors and out, all over the city. As well as musicians, the festival showcases jugglers, mime-artists, stilt-walkers and stand-up comedians in Christchurch’s streets and parks. Last year, they entertained more than 300,000 people.
09-10.02.2013, IVREA, ITALY
Storico Carnevale di Ivrea They do carnival somewhat differently in this small town near Turin, in northern Italy – by hurling oranges at each other. The tradition harks back to a popular uprising in the Middle Ages, when the citizens drove out an evil tyrant who ruled the town using a weapon good enough to eat. Back then, the people mostly fired beans at the passing carriages, but now it’s 4,000 oranges flying through the air at the annual Battle of Ivrea. Participants wear full-face helmets to prevent head injuries.
Culture 09-12.01.2013, GRONINGEN, NETHERLANDS
Beyoncé: star of the Super Bowl half-time show 14-20.01.2013, KALIBO, PHILIPPINES
Eurosonic Noorderslag Ati-Atihan 8 Anyone who loves carnival, but finds Rio de When a band is asked to perform at Eurosonic, it’s a bit like a law student getting a place at Harvard, as only the very best newcomers are invited to Europe’s most important festival for up-and-coming talent. For fans, it means 300 live concerts in three days, along with presentations and conferences on the future of pop music. An absolute must this year will be the concert by British band Chvrches, whose dreamy synthesizer pop is already being touted as one of the musical highlights of 2013.
Janeiro too crowded and touristy, should book themselves a flight to the island of Panay in the Philippines. The small town of Kalibo really comes into its own during the second week of January, with costumes, loud music, parades and parties. For hundreds of years, the island’s various indigenous peoples have come together at this Filipino Mardi Gras to pay homage to the Santo Niño, the Child Jesus, and compete with each other as to who can wear the most colourful traditional costume.
Low-flying vitamin C bombs in Ivrea
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Save The Date January & February 2013 JANUARY 15, 16
The sound of Silo Since the St Jerome’s Laneway Festival was first staged in Melbourne in 2004, it has appeared in Singapore, New Zealand and five cities across Australia. This month, the Auckland edition returns to Silo Park following a successful debut last year. “We’ll have more shade, more bars and more bands,” says co-promoter Ben Howe. Highlights for 2013 are international acts such as Alt-J and Bat For Lashes as well as NZ bands including The Phoenix Foundation and Street Chant. auckland.lanewayfestival.com.au
More than 100,000 people flocked to NZ Nitro Circus shows last year JANUARY 25–FEBRUARY 9
High jinks Thomas Pagès may have lost out to New Zealand’s Levi Sherwood in the race for the 2012 Red Bull X-Fighters freestyle motocross (FMX) title, but this month, the flying Frenchman has the opportunity to gain some new Kiwi fans on the Nitro Circus Live tour. Pagès will be joined by other world-class FMX riders, including Nate Adams from the US and Kiwi star Luke Smith, the latter on the comeback trail after a serious injury in 2009 and a recent accident during training. He hopes to be back on his bike by the end of January. As well as FMX-ers, the two-and-a-half hour Nitro Circus show also features top BMX and skateboard action, and the 15m-high Nitro Giganta Ramp. The tour begins in Dunedin, before taking in Christchurch, Auckland, Hamilton and Wellington. www.nitrocircuslive.com
The most dominant duo in New Zealand long-distance triathlon over the last 15 years return to the Bay of Plenty for their annual tilt at the Port of Tauranga Half. Cameron Brown and Joanna Lawn (right) are defending champions, and they’re both chasing milestone wins in this year’s race. Brown is going for his 10th; Lawn is targeting her fifth. www.tgahalf.co.nz
Animal Collective, the experimental, out-there exponents of psychedelic electro-rock, return to New Zealand for the first time in three years. Stemming from Baltimore, USA, they play Auckland’s Powerstation in support of their ninth album, Centipede Hz. They’ve been called “inaccessible”, “febrile” and “downright weird”, but their live shows are intriguing, often joyful affairs.
Animal Collective hit Auckland this month
WORDS: ROBERT TIGHE. PHOTOGRAPHY: CHRIS TEDESCO/RED BULL CONTENT POOL, ATIBA PHOTO
If you’re one of the 30 million people who watched Danny MacAskill’s first video featuring his mad bike riding skills, you’ll have heard The Funeral by Band of Horses. The first single from the US band’s 2006 debut album, it’s an epic indie rock anthem. Since then, the Seattle quintet have released three more critically acclaimed albums and played two sold-out shows in New Zealand. On their latest tour they play the Wellington and Auckland Town Halls. Expect plaid shirts and requests for The Funeral. www.bandofhorses.com
ILLUSTRATION: DIETMAR KAINRATH
K A I N R AT H
ilo Park, Auckland CBD’s first harbour-side park, is currently enjoying its second summer. Part of the Wynyard Quarter precinct, rushed into being for the Rugby World Cup, it wasn’t clear whether it would flourish after the crowds had gone home. It has. We go there. A large part of the park’s character comes from its proximity to the working waterfront, especially the storage tanks that will, eventually, give way to a civic redevelopment. But while the silos are there, why not make a virtue of them? That’s what happened this spring, when a team led by street artist Askew One transformed one group of tanks, overlooking the water, into a bright, bold work that lifts the whole area around it. While the local restaurants are still of indifferent quality, the giant art that overlooks them, proclaiming the verses of CK Stead’s poem, Auckland, is brilliant. And yet, this also highlights Auckland’s awkward relationship with one of its most vital cultures. Just as Wynyard opened up for the crowds in 2011, something else was being shut down a few kilometres away. In Poynton Terrace, near bohemian Karangahape Road, an evolving canvas, painted and repainted by Askew One was silenced, its colours permanently muted with a dull, grey wash. Although the wall was part of a privately owned building, Auckland Council’s graffiti prevention team ordered that it be buffed over as part of a curiously conceived effort to make the area more acceptable to rugby tourists. The wall became the centre of a controversy that enmeshed the city’s mayor, Len Brown, who acknowledged that council officers had exceeded their powers and professed his support for Askew. But the art never came back, in part because graffiti prevention officers declared their right to approve whatever replaced it. Askew walked away. The appearance, a year later, of the painted silos, seemed to signal
Street Smarts Art, and the decision as to ‘what is art’, should be out in the open, says Russell Brown a turnaround in the official attitude to street art in Auckland. But it’s not that simple. Like the Poynton Terrace wall, the art on the tanks is privately funded and, at least for now, on private property. The support of the city’s overseers of public art has not exactly been overwhelming. When the work was proposed, Auckland Council’s advisory panel for public art said it would be out of context with Michio Ihara’s nearby Wind Tree sculpture, which had been relocated to the park after years of indignity elsewhere. Given that the Wind Tree overlooks a basketball court, and kids paddle in the pool beneath it, fretting about something else nearby seemed a bit precious. Waterfront Auckland, which eventually gave the go-ahead to the project’s founder, Hamish Keith, had an even more unusual reason for being wary of the idea – that
people might like it too much. Specifically, when the time came to redevelop the site, Aucklanders might be reluctant to let go of their art. There’d be a fuss. If you need an illustration of the perils of institutional thinking, there’s one. The track record of public-place art that has been sanctioned by Auckland authorities is, frankly, patchy. On one hand, the sculpted tiles in the trenches of New Lynn railway station are entrancing. On the other, I cringe every time I see the crushed-leather effect of the murals further along the line at Newmarket, as funk-free as their council champions. But neither of those enjoys what Hamish Keith calls the “blissful visual ambush” of true street art. When Askew One wrote a series of illustrated essays on the visual influences on his style by Kingsland and Morningside, the neighbourhoods where he grew up, none of the works he named were actually meant to be there. After all, who places official art in run-down suburbs? These were tucked around corners, high on walls. Their creators were famous only among friends and local kids. The challenge for Auckland is to embrace the vitality of its street art culture: to, as Gary Yong of the inner-city art practice Cut Collective put it to me, “Stop talking about graffiti art and just talk about art. Just blur that line between highbrow and lowbrow.” Street art is, by its very heritage, opportunist and transient, like the hip-hop music with which it is often associated. It improvises using the elements to hand. Perhaps the best thing the official guardians of public art can do is to just get out of the way of such works and to let the art do its job. Because this kind of art reflects the cultural identity already taking shape in Auckland: vivid, lively, and just a little unruly. Russell Brown is a media commentator and blogger living in Auckland
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