Nick Pescetto has had a hell of a year. From freeriding to filming. He travelled the world with his bike and his camera. We caught up with the Italian freerider to talk about his recent trips, Rampage, injuries and big bikes.
You have been riding big stuff for the last couple of years. Why did you decide to get on a big bike and ride everything with that?
I like to ride with every type of bike, but I thought that with a big bike, I could push my limits more, taking my riding to bigger mountains and bigger jumps. Big bike riding to me feels much better too and I love to see tricks thrown down like that.
We have seen a lot of riders made this switch. Do you think it is the future of mountain biking? Would you say Freeriding is for everyone?
I think Freeride is more of the essence because it has his own mark. Dirt Jumping is very similar to BMX which is sick to watch, but it will never have it’s own personality. Freeride is sick because it’s big in every aspect, it can be ridden only on big bikes, you can travel to the gnarliest places on the planet, ride any type of line or jump… It’s just freedom.
I would say it is for everyone, for sure. It just takes a different mindset. It’s way harder than building a jump or riding a park. It’s about finding a spot, see if you can ride it, if you can shred it and it takes much more effort. Sometimes I see Freeride trips more like an adventure in a new place than just 100% riding, the whole experience makes it different.
Let’s get back to Whistler. How was landing your first backflips on Crabapple Hits after unluckily crashing while trying them for the first time at Whip-off Worlds 2012?
It was good, I knew that none had done it on that jump so I was the first one. At the end of the day it’s not that big of a deal, though, anyone can flip a jump. This year a bunch of people did it.
After Crankworx you had the chance to ride in Kamloops. What was the highlight of that trip?
Just the whole trip was sick man. Kamloops is the original Freeride town, spots everywhere, the ranch with a bunch of trails, lines and jumps, insane dirt to shape… It’s kicking man, wish I could spend more time there.
Then the breaking news dropped in. You were invited to the toughest and most legendary Freeride contest ever held on earth, the Red Bull Rampage. What was your first reaction when you received it?
I couldn’t really believe it.
Two weeks after you jumped on a plane to Livigno for the Nine Knights contest. Things didn’t go as planned… What happened?
I cased a bit the long jump, not that bad. I flew a bit down the landing, it was really sandy, my front wheel got stuck in the sand and I went right on my shoulder. Everything went so fast, I stand up right away and walked to the ambulance knowing it was all over for Rampage.
Do you think it could have been a life-changing opportunity if you could have ridden in Utah?
Not life changing, you never know, Rampage is gnarly and I still don’t know how it is to be there. I’ve seen the spot in real person, it’s just a matter of riding there.
You ended up having surgery in Italy and then flew back to Barcelona. How was the road to recovery?
I recovered just chillin’ with my friends, partying a bit, filming, editing, taking it easy. I’ve watched lots of Rampage videos and I’m looking ahead. I was veeery bummed at first, but then I was like… “Oh well, shit happens, I’m still standing, let’s see what comes next”. Smile on my face and off to the next one.
You couldn’t go to Utah in October but you did in November. What for? Redemption, holidays or work?
I went to film my man Antoine Bizet for ION, he wanted to shoot a video there so I went to film him. Of course, I brought my bike too. It was my first ride on the big bike after surgery. I had a new bike with all new components, so at first I took it very easy, but it was perfect I felt good right on it.
Everything is fine now. What are your plans for the future, will you keep freeriding on the mountains or maybe we will see you at the FMB world tour stops?
No FMB for me, it’s not my thing, I can’t do all those tricks. I will be filming a bunch, behind and in front of the camera, I wanna’ travel as much as possible, find some sweet Freeride spots to film or just have a session with my friends. I’m gonna’ work on something, basically have fun.
Best of luck.
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Photos by Jacob Gibbins, Alessandro Belluscio, CPGANG & Team In Focus.