THE ATV BACKFLIP: WHEN NERVES AND WONDER ARE SET ASIDE

THE ATV BACKFLIP: WHEN NERVES AND WONDER IS SET ASIDE

With today’s top athletes doing the craziest, biggest tricks and flips, we forget how entertaining and available a small dirt jump can be! All you need are friends, a shovel, dirt, and the will to ride!

The Decision: “I’m not going to wonder ‘What if?’ the rest of my life!” That’s what I kept telling myself when I finally took the idea of doing an ATV backflip seriously. I always thought I could do it, and I knew I had to at least try! The idea brought a lot of problem-solving and work to the table, but that wasn’t going to stop me and the few friends who had seen me ride and believed I could do it.

Preparations: One Friday after work, a couple of friends and I loaded up whatever dirt tools we could find between ourselves and our wind farm. With no real plan in mind, we headed out to a hidden riding spot known only to the locals who gave us permission to ride there. We decided that an old freestyle landing would be our best bet for the jump, so we started carving. I was extremely worried about jumping too far and not getting the air I needed, so we overcompensated the steepness of the first jump, which ended up not working at all.

Repair and Adjustments: The quad wasn’t ridable after the failed jump, so I reached out to my friend near Power Sports Nation (PSN) in Norfolk, NE, who had a couple of the parts I needed in stock. He really saved the day! The following day, in our shop and in between our actual jobs, we replaced all the broken parts we could and hammered back what we couldn’t. We met back up at the jump to make some much-needed adjustments, spending a total of 12 hours carving the jump and moving the dirt to the landing side throughout the weekend.

The Moment of Truth: After several practice runs and roll-ups, it was time for the flip. I white knuckled my grips, yelled inside my head as loud as I could, approached slowly in 1st gear, and… BRAAAAPPP! Once I realized I was still alive and rolling away, the most surreal feeling hit me. I yelled an uncontrollable “YEA BOYYY,” and I no longer had to wonder “WHAT IF?” anymore!

Sharing the Achievement: In the excitement of finally doing an ATV backflip, I sent the videos to Derek Guetter with ATV BIG AIR TOUR, an O.G. of ATV freestyle (his brother Jon actually did the very first ATV backflip!). He invited me to hang out with John Langaas, Nick Rogers, and the crew at one of their local shows in Minnesota. I naturally accepted and took the short drive out there. It was a great time, and those guys can SEND IT!

Inspiration and Gratitude: “I would love for this to inspire someone to give riding quads a shot, and hopefully we can get the youth to spark back quads & quad freestyle!” I want to make sure all the friends who helped out get mentioned and express my gratitude.

Special Thanks:

  • Jim Morlan: For keeping me positive, planning, and shovel work.
  • Colby Peterson: Planning and shovel work.
  • Jessi Wiley: Hype man and shovel work.
  • Power Sports Nation: For getting me replacement parts the same day and introducing us to the local riding spot.
  • Blake Carter (boss): For letting us use the shop and being supportive of our riding.
  • Haystack Wind-Farm Crew: For all the long drives, long days, and fun times at tracks, riding spots, and wherever we can have a good time!

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