It doesn’t get much more bizarre than this week’s photo. When I first saw it I laughed out loud. What the fuck is going on??? Let’s break it down. A guy (Jack Hartje) is boosting a large launch ramp to flat over a semi-circle of fire and a guy on a motorcycle doing a burnout. There’s another guy on a motorcycle who is chugging a beer and also looks to be doing a burnout. There’s another motorcycle rider in the far background for reasons unknown. A guy is standing next to a tank of gas and filming with a cellphone. Seated next to him is a guy shooting a photo on an SLR who presumably had placed the flashes (looks to be 2 Sunpak 555‘s and a Vivitar 285) around the subject. We see the back of another man is crouching directly in front of the camera and looks to be also filming on a cellphone. The very best piece of this Xtreme puzzle is the GoPro on a jib arm creeping into frame from the right. Too fucking funny. I love that Mario realized that the whole scene was pretty wild and decided to take a few steps back to really show what’s going on, instead of just shooting the action.
“Jack Hartje is from Buffalo, NY. One morning he called my friend/roommate Korey and said something along the lines of
“Hey, a bunch of stunt riders are coming to an abandoned parking lot in Syracuse. I’m coming through with my ramp and I want to jump some shit. Oh yeah and bring gasoline if you have some.”
I threw my camera in my bag like I always do and without hesitation Korey and I set out (with gasoline) and met up with these guys. That day we proceeded to witness some of the craziest stunt riding we had ever seen.
While the riders were taking a break and having a beer, Jack got a couple of them in on the idea of sitting in front of the ramp and doing burnouts while getting jumped over.
They rode over and parked in front of the ramp while Korey poured some gasoline in front of them.
Jack peddled to the end of the parking lot and I ran over to a spot about 25 feet away hoping to get the photo I pictured in my head. I had to focus on the building in the background. I set the camera at 500 or 1000 shutter speed since I figured jack was going to be hauling ass as usual, and clicked the aperture a couple notches lower since I knew jack would be darker than the building I was focusing my camera’s light meter on.
Korey lit the gasoline, Jack peddled full speed at the ramp, engines redlined as the stunt riders did burnouts (and one chugged his beer), I snapped my shutter, and the rest is history.
Gear: Canon AE-1p on (400) and all manual, (I either use this or my Pentax K1000)
Film: Cheap Kodak B&W 400 film”
Check out more of Mario’s work here and more of Jack’s riding here.
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