Fully dressed in a freestyle motocross attire, Robbie Maddison stood on the floor of a barge moving gently through the region of Tahiti and ready to make his pipe dream a reality: Riding his motorbike straight into the mouth of the world’s heaviest waves. Even with the presence of a fully equipped camera crew, and a well-trained rescue team in place alongside with the menacing saltwater terrain of Teahupo’o, the man who everyone called “Maddo” was nervous for obvious reasons.
“I’d become quite terrified, trembling in my boots,” he said. “But I made my bed and it was time to lie in it.”
Risk to Maddison is not new, He is a 34-year-old Australian motorbike stunt rider that has a New year’s Eve jump onto the Arc De Triomphe right in front of the Las Vagas-Paris hotel and a leap over the Corinth Canal in Greece attached to his resume. This was something entirely different; despite its recognition as the world’s heaviest reef breaking waves, one of the riskiest surfing spots on the planet, with five hundred deaths since 2000 was Teahupo’o. Translated in Polynesian, its name means “PILE OF HEADS.”
You might be wondering what made Maddison tempt fate and strain the limits of technology?
Well, it all began with a wakeboarding adventure with his friends. While he was riding on the water, he pondered that with the right mechanics, he could merge his love for moto and surf. His knowledge led to the creation of a dozen diverse versions of custom skis that is attached to his dirt bike, with skegs to act as rudders for minimizing and maneuverability, a paddle tire on the rear wheel to help the bike forward in the water and also handle well on land.
Following two years of trial and error, Maddison went to DC shoes global brand leader Jeff Taylor with his creation, as Maddo’s previous successful rides on the water were known to him. Robbie managed to go several miles in Mission Bay. On the spot, Taylor wrote a check to support the project. Months later, all efforts yielded good returns, as Maddon made his motorcycle surfing a reality with the help of is self-designed KTM 250X. On Sunday, DC released the footage of Maddison’s historic ride – a clip boldly titled “PIPE DREAM”.