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Interview with Ailo Gaup

interview & pix by Tobias Hannig

He is definetely one of the best European FMX riders these days. First he ruled in Europe being the 1st rider doing backflips @ IFMXF Contests and also winning the IFMXF Championship in 2004. Then he invented the Underflip and got invited to the X-Games in LA. So he travelled to the USA in 2005 and showed the US guys, that he is on the same level like the big dogs in the USA. We are talking about Ailo Gaup from Norway. We asked and Ailo answered ...

First of all, tell the guys out there some basics about you - where do you come from, how old are you and what is your mission?
Im a twentyfive year old kid, who likes playing with his dirtbikes. There is no mission, except for keeping my hobbies alive.

Ailo, you came back from Munich a few days ago. Tell us something about your experience there and how hard was it to ride in the cold arena?
Air&Style was great. It was hard to make the bikes run in the rapidly changing conditions, going from minus five degrees to plus five and rain and snow. The rain also made it impossible to ride on the carpets they used for the run-ups and ramps. Anyway, the event turned from almost impossible to finnish, to a great event with good weather, plenty of spectators and a really good atmosphere where people weren’t to worried about beating eachother.

Ailo Gaup
Ailo with a Indian CatNac @ Nokia Air & Style Games in Munich

Now you are back in Norway? How do you train in the cold and snowy wintertime?
I play Colin McRae on my x-box, and I practice cooking. It’s been snowing about 20cm a night, so it’s great. As soon as Im done with the flu Im gonna go snowboarding. I live 500 meters from the local skiresort. It’s wintertime and a friend of mine made me realise that there’s a reason why they’re called DIRT bikes.

Pastrana made another evolution in FMX. He did the Double-Flip. Everybody is talking about Flips and the other sick tricks are in the background ... Do you think, that the people hype the Backflip to much and the judges are score them to overpriced?
No, if I didn’t get scored for flipping I’d quit doing them right away. At least at contests.

Ailo Gaup
Ailo doing a Flip @ Nokia Air & Style Games in Munich

You and Rebeaud went to USA to ride some stops of the Mtn. Dew Tour. Tell me something about your experiences there. Is it a lot different from European FMX?
Yes, the jumps are a lot bigger, that’s the difference.

Did you hear about the cooperation between the FIM and the IFMXF? Tell us your feeling regarding the prospective cooperation between FIM and IFMXF?
Some people like it and some dont. They’ve got different interests. I hope they wont gain too much control of the sport. I don’t want it to become like motocross GP’s. I do this because I like it, not because I want to hang medals up on the wall in my living room. They’re in a box in the closet. The FIM might be able to make the sport more popular though. We’ll see.

Ailo Gaup
Ailo with a Cliffhanger @ Nokia Air & Style Games in Munich

What do you think the european FMX needs to get itself into better shape like the US FMX?
skills, there’s no other excuse for not being on their level than that. It’s always windy in California, so they don’t have as much of an advantage weatherwise, as we might think.
They don’t even practice as much as a lot of the Europeans do. America is a lot bigger than Europe, there are a lot more riders. It’s easier to find a good looking chick in a group of hundred people than in a group of ten.

What are your plans for the weeks and the upcoming season?
Im gonna work on my house, go to Hemsedal (a skiresort) and do things that I don’t always have time to do in the summer. When the season kicks off I might do some ifmxf’s. Im gonna enjoy the winter and I’ll probably have a plan for the summer, when it comes.

Ailo Gaup
Ailo doing a Flatliner @ Nokia Air & Style Games in Munich

Okay, now our classical word association. Give me the first word that pops into your head:

Ramps: Only thing I’ve got
USA or Europe: Scandinavia
Sponsors: Siemens, Vans, Honda, HJC, Alpinestars, Starmotor, Honda cars, Pirelli, Esp1tech, and I need more…
Favorite website: milf hunter
Double Flip by Pastrana: riiiight
Metal or Hiphop: both
Natural Terrain: Not allowed to ride on it, if that’s what you were thinking
Tattoos: Nice, but not on my body
50’s: Fun in the beginning
Girls: Do I look gay?
Movie: The aviator
Travelling: Fun when you don’t have to

Right on, thanks Ailo. Hope to see around ...

More information and pix about AILO on his website

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