The Outside Blog

Bikes : Nov 2010

Surfer Stephanie Gilmore Wins Fourth ASP World Title


Surfer Stephanie Gilmore secured her fourth consecutive ASP World Title by beating out Melanie Bartels in the Women's Rip Curl Pro Search Puerto Rico.

“I’m really at a loss for words right now,” Gilmore said. “Mel (Bartels) is one of the most dangerous surfers in the world and has had my number on several occasions. Even on that last wave there, I was certain she’d got the score. I was blown away when they called it out and I’m rapt right now.”

It's the first time a surfer has won four consecutive titles since starting out on the tour. Gilmore began her championship run as a rookie.

“I guess I haven’t really been thinking about that,” Gilmore said. “But to hold a record that Layne (Beachley) or even Kelly (Slater) never got is pretty special. I never thought I would even win two, consecutive titles so to win four is a massive achievement for me.”

Here's a quick glimpse of the 22-year-old's resume:

Four consecutive ASP Women’s World Titles
ASP Women’s World Tour Rookie of the Year (2007)
Two-time Vans Triple Crown of Surfing Titles
15 ASP Women’s World Tour event victories

For more on Gilmore, check out our interview, action gallery , and lifestyle gallery by photographer Chris Burkard.

--Joe Spring

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Kayaking Africa: Hippos, Crocs and the LRA

CK_Africa  027
The following dispatch is from extreme kayaker, Ben Stookesberry, a member of the First Ascent kayak team. They are currently on an expedition in Africa to make a first descent of the Lukuga River, running out of Lake Tanganyika and into the Congo basin. The kayakers began their journey on the Nile in Uganda and will follow Stanley's Route over land through Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania and into the Congo via Kalemie. Then they will tackle the Lukuga.

Hendri Coetzee (pr. Coat-zee-a) is extremely blunt. Especially when it comes to setting up protocol on the White Nile: "Stay out of eddies…especially the small BS ones because there are three-ton hippos that will bite you in half. Stay off the banks because the crocs are having a bake and might fancy you for lunch. Basically, stay close behind me and follow my lead. Any questions?" Chris Korbulic and I had never been given instructions like this, but we knew this was Hendri's place to lead. The day before, Jesse and Darin bowed out of the descent due to concerns over the area's unmatched wildlife hazards. I was trembling with anxiety.

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127 Hours Makes 14 People Pass Out...So Far

Fourteen people have passed out while watching 127 Hours, the LA Times reports.

The film tells the story of Aron Ralston, a hiker who amputated his own arm after a boulder fell on him in a remote canyon; the process of amputation is not left to the imagination.

"I started to feel like I was going to throw up," a Hollywood filmgoer told the Times. Then she fainted, joining several other light-headed film enthusiasts who saw the movie in Telluride, Toronto and Mill Valley.

The film stars James Franco as Ralston and opens Friday in New York and Los Angeles. Be sure to check out the December issue of Outside for an exclusive behind-the-scenes article from Aron Ralston and an interview with Franco.

Read the Aron Ralston story here. Watch an exclusive clip from the movie above.

--Erin Beresini

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Christopher McDougall's Top 4 Running Tips

Mcdougall bft finish line Born to Run author Christopher McDougall will co-host Reinventing Running: The Cabaret with the actor and avid trail-runner Peter Sarsgaard on Friday, November 5 at the New York Society for Ethical Culture. Harvard professor Daniel Lieberman, coach Eric Orton, Born to Run star Barefoot Ted McDonald, and proponent of paleo-athleticism/nutrition John Durant will all speak at the event. Consider it a prelude to the NYC Marathon Sunday, November 7. You can get tickets at:

Whether or not you’re a believer in barefoot running, McDougall’s got some pointers for you. Here are his top four running tips.

--Aileen Torres

4. Get Naked: The more studies that come about cushioned running shoes, the more overwhelming the evidence that they're a hindrance at best. Even Alberto Salazar, the great marathoner and Nike-sponsored coach, believes that a barefoot-style foot strike is the key to swift, efficient running. The best way to learn proper running form is to strip down to first principals: shuck your shoes and re-acquaint your feet with planet Earth. Once you've mastered barefoot-style form, you're free to wear any footwear you like. Patrick Sweeney wins marathons in Barefoot Ted's huaraches, while Emil Zatopek trained big miles in combat boots and did just dandy.

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Born to Run: Christopher McDougall's Cabaret

The NYC Marathon is Sunday, November 7. If you’re going to be in the area, check out Born to Run author Christopher McDougall’s prelude event on Friday, November 5--Reinventing Running: The Cabaret. The actor--and trail runner--Peter Sarsgaard will co-host. It’ll be TED-conference style, with each speaker up for 15 min., followed by a full-stage Q&A with the audience.

Don’t be afraid of the talking heads. They’ve got something interesting to say, all about humanity’s first fine art, as McDougall calls it: distance running. You’ll hear from Dr. Daniel Lieberman, Harvard’s "Barefoot Professor"; Eric Orton, a coach who's trained McDougall; Barefoot Ted McDonald, a.k.a. BFT, a star of Born to Run, and John Durant, a proponent of paleo athleticism and nutrition.

Doors open at 6 p.m. at the New York Society for Ethical Culture, on Central Park West. Tickets go for $10 a pop, and you can get them at the Paragon Sports near Union Square or online at

McDougall was busy this weekend with a benefit for the National Kidney Foundation, but he took time out to chat with us about The Cabaret.

--Aileen Torres

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