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Home » Sports » Mountainbiking » Backyard Battle 2024 | Stop 1: Gnome Edition

Backyard Battle 2024 | Stop 1: Gnome Edition

The 2024 Monster Energy Backyard Battle series got underway in Wales, UK, seeing a stacked list of 40 male and female riders invited to get a taste of the backyard heaven Vero Sandler and Sam Hodgson created.

The 2024 Monster Energy Backyard Battle series got underway seeing a stacked list of 40 male and female riders invited to get a taste of the backyard heaven Vero Sandler and Sam Hodgson createdSam Hodgson

What better way to celebrate, than by hosting a housewarming event with some of their closest friends and riding peers from the freeride and slopestyle scene who came from all over the globe to enjoy some well-earned laps, seeing Aus/NZ riders like Matt Begg, Vinny Armstrong and Remy Morton looking right at home on the setup, along with the French connection comprised of Edgar Briole, Paul Couderc, Louis Reboul, Tomas Lemoine and Tim Bringer absolutely destroying the setup all week long.

The 2024 Monster Energy Backyard Battle series got underway seeing a stacked list of 40 male and female riders invited to get a taste of the backyard heaven Vero Sandler and Sam Hodgson createdSam Reynolds
The 2024 Monster Energy Backyard Battle series got underway seeing a stacked list of 40 male and female riders invited to get a taste of the backyard heaven Vero Sandler and Sam Hodgson createdTim Bringer

Dubbed the Gnomes Edition of Backyard Battle, which defies some of the lore as there is nothing small about this spot. Featuring two main lines that meander and link across various sections, with no shortage of opportunities to find unique and creative ways down. From tech and flowy to deep and steep ambidextrous berms and hips, all ending in what looks to be the biggest mulch landing ever made.

The 2024 Monster Energy Backyard Battle series got underway seeing a stacked list of 40 male and female riders invited to get a taste of the backyard heaven Vero Sandler and Sam Hodgson createdThe 2024 Monster Energy Backyard Battle series got underway seeing a stacked list of 40 male and female riders invited to get a taste of the backyard heaven Vero Sandler and Sam Hodgson createdThe 2024 Monster Energy Backyard Battle series got underway seeing a stacked list of 40 male and female riders invited to get a taste of the backyard heaven Vero Sandler and Sam Hodgson created

The design of the course gives some insight into Hodgy and Vero’s minds – “It’s something I’ve always wanted to build that I couldn’t find anywhere else, taking some of my favourite features I’ve ever ridden, but also implementing good design so everything links together seamlessly to allow it to be ridden in as many ways you can dream of.” – Sam Hodgson

“We just kept on building and stacking, we weren’t sure where it was going to end up and if we’d have enough resources to keep going, but we’re so happy with the result. We’re hugely thankful to everyone who supported our vision along the way. We can’t wait to spend more time riding and filming here.” – Vero Sandler

The 2024 Monster Energy Backyard Battle series got underway seeing a stacked list of 40 male and female riders invited to get a taste of the backyard heaven Vero Sandler and Sam Hodgson createdMatt Begg
The 2024 Monster Energy Backyard Battle series got underway seeing a stacked list of 40 male and female riders invited to get a taste of the backyard heaven Vero Sandler and Sam Hodgson createdLouis Reboul

Concluding the 3-day jam session style event, some fitting awards were given out to the top riders of the week:

Biggest Grafter – Oscar Powell: One of the main guys to credit for building and maintaining the line, who also happened to be one of the most stylish riders out on the course.

Biggest Frother – Harry Gascoyne: Being relatively unknown before this event, Harry’s riding shone against some of the more established names in attendance, earning the top amateur rider award.

Biggest Steeze – Vinny Armstrong: It’s no secret Vinny makes riding look too good and effortless, earning her the most stylish rider of the week.

Hardest Shredder – Louis Reboul: Undoubtedly clocked in the most laps all week and rode every inch of the course with his signature style and bag of tricks.

Photos by Syo van Vliet, Tomb Photography and Ryan Franklin.

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