We’ve partnered with Microsoft Studios ahead of the release of Forza Horizon 3 to look at what happens when the worlds of action sports and motorsport collide, and how the “leave your limits” attitude crosses over between the two. Many of the world’s best mountain bikers love their vehicles, but few drive them as well as freerider Brandon Semenuk or former downhill World Champion Gee Atherton, both of whom race rally cars in their spare time. We spoke to them about why going fast on four wheels is the perfect way to blow off steam after riding professionally on two.
Brandon Semenuk is synonymous with the world of freeride mountain biking. The Whistler-born rider has revolutionised the sport in the past five years, innovating like none other and raising the bar to a place where few have been able to follow.
Semenuk was on a bike not long after he learned how to walk; racing by nine and making a name for himself on the elite-level slopestyle circuit by 2008, when he was just 16 years old. By 2012 Brandon had won back-to-back freeride world tours and these days the 25 year old is expected to medal or win whenever he turns up at the start gate; which is why he likes to relieve stress by trading two wheels for four whenever he gets time off the bike.
“I grew up in Whistler and have always done a lot of riding and running up the logging roads near Whistler and Squamish,” he says. “I’d see the rally cars out there and think, ‘That looks so rad.’”
Brandon has been passionate for rallying since long before he was considered one of the best on a bike. He bought up a Subaru and hit the roads as soon as he was old enough to drive.