We have spent a day for you with Gerry Cusini and the team of shapers who build and take care of the daily maintenance at Mottolino bike park to find out what's behind their great work. Every day these guys run through the park far and wide with rakes and shovels to ensure the best possible conditions for the structures and the trails. Below is the interview with Gerry, the team leader, who will reveal us some secrets in the job.
Start by introducing yourself and your team!
Hi everyone, my name is Gerry Cusini, I was born on 06/28/1977 and live in Livigno. At winter I'm a snowboard instructor for Madness Snowboard School in Livigno, while in summer I deal with the construction and maintenance of the trails in the bike park. My team, in summer, is made of 4 people (Christian, Tobia, Sergio, Elia) while in spring, when it comes to clearing snow from the trails and restore the structure in just a month time, it is made of 7.
How long have you been doing this job for during the summer?
I started in 2007, at first I was working as freeride mtb instructor until 4 p.m. and then I was in charge of the maintenance of the trails. A couple of years ago instead I began to do maintenance all day long throughout summer except in the month of August when the bike park is full (in this case I still teach a bit ;-)
Where do you get inspiration for the construction of the new trails?
It may seem strange, but until a few years ago I was racing boardercross snowboard and the courses used to be very flow, therfore it is from there that I got familiar with the summer trails. Of course, talking of bike parks, there are some which are worlwide recognized for their high standard and I always keep an eye on them to check and learn what’s new and understand the trends of the moment. This way I can always build up to date structures.
What is the greatest structure you have ever built?
Without the shadow of a doubt, it is the huge wall-ride. I had it in mind for a few years and then finally, 4 seasons ago during spring, in a single afternoon I built it with the help of other two guys. At the end of the work we were really surprised by its size and, so far, I have not yet seen such a high wallride in any other bike park. During the first year bikers were very cautious in facing it and very few were riding it. Nowadays, after a few seasons, it is one of the most popular structures among the middle-experts.
How is your working day organzed?
During the months of June, July and September we start at 8 am and we split into two groups, one dedicated to the maintenance of the trails and the existing structures, one dedicated to the construction of new trails. In August, however, when the park is very busy, we are dedicated primarily to maintenance making it in the morning from 8.00 to 10.00 am and in the afternoon after 16.30.
Suggest a trail to an experienced biker and to a beginner who have never been in Livigno.
A “must do” for the experts is always the DH 2005 that was used for the MTB World Cup in 2005. For beginners instead I undoubtedly suggest the new Eas23, a trail we have opened a couple of weeks ago, specifically designed for those who have never tried freeride mountain bike. In addiction to that, for beginners and for those ones who don’t have a freeride mountain bike I remind the chance to get the All Inclusive package directly online. The package entitles you to have a daily bikepass, a freeride mtb, a helmet, full protective gears and an instructor to come with you for first rides in the park at only € 82, instead of € 87,00. To buy the package click here!