Home Office is the latest creative output from Austrian trials bike star Fabio Wibmer. Bored during lockdown, Wibmer decided to build some trick features around his house and took inspiration from the everyday home office to create his own personal bike park. Watch the video above and then read on as Wibmer reveals how he came up with the ideas and which trick required almost 700 attempts to get right in the interview below.
Q&A with Fabio Wibner
How did you come up with the idea for the video?
Because of the curfews and the current situation, we're all forced to stay at home, so I thought about how I could ride my bike at home and I moved my playground around a bit, and into my house. I already had some ideas in my head, but I didn't act on them before, because I preferred to ride in the mountains or city. I'm grateful to live in such a great house, as there's a lot of space here and we also have a garden, which is a big advantage. So, I wrote down a few ideas and tried a lot of tricks to see what was possible. Some of the tricks seemed impossible at first, but after more than 700 attempts they worked out.
MTB rider Fabio Wibmer drinks a Red Bull as the sun goes down on top of his roof in Austria. Sunset on the roof of Fabio Wibmer's home office © HANNES BERGER
What's the most difficult trick in this video and how many attempts did you need to get it?
It's hard to say which trick was really the most difficult, but the basketball trick shot probably took the longest, where I kicked the ball up with the back wheel and hit it into the hoop. I really didn't believe that it would work, but then I just missed the basket and decided to try again and again until it finally worked.
Of the almost 700 attempts, there were at most three or four takes where the ball flew halfway towards the basket. The second to last shot only just missed, I hit the ring, but the ball didn't go into the net. Funny enough, the very next attempt worked and, of course, we were all really stoked.
There was a lot of luck involved: the throw to the ground was ideal, my speed was right and I hit the ball perfectly with the back wheel.
Was there a trick that you would have liked to do, but it just didn't work out?
I was surprised myself. In the beginning, I wrote down so many ideas that I had to delete some of them, otherwise, we'd still be shooting in the garden today. Almost all of the planned tricks and ideas worked, which surprised me a bit. I still had one idea that I wanted to do something cool with the trampoline, but the idea was too far from reach this time.
MTB trials rider Fabio Wibmer Backflips on his trampoline during the filming of his video Home Office. © HANNES BERGER
What did your neighbors say when they saw you riding off the roof?
We have neighbors all around and most of them think it's cool. This time, we also included them in the video. We get along well with them, they're super nice and cool. Sure, it's sometimes a bit unusual for them to sit in the garden and watch their neighbor jumping off the roof doing a Backflip, but there were never any problems during the recordings, although it certainly got a little louder here and there.
Was it a challenge to produce the clip with a mini-crew in your home office?
Sure, it was a challenge and something different compared to the bigger productions, like Wibmer's Law or Urban Freeride Lives 3, but because of this limitation, we all blossomed and tried to be as creative as possible.
A cameraman rides on a hoverboard to capture Fabio Wibmer riding his bike during the filming of his video Home Office.
MTb rials rider Fabio Wibmer Backflips off his roof during the filming of the video, Home Office. Pretty fly for a bike guy © HANNES BERGER
I've been working with the team for quite a long time now and very closely. We're all really well-rehearsed and always have a cool time together.
I feel a lot more comfortable when I work with people I've known for a long time because everyone knows what to look out for and everything is well coordinated. We work together very professionally and are also great friends. It's extremely important that it fits humanly, otherwise, the quality of the project will suffer.
We had Hannes Berger and Marius Prell doing the filming and photography. It was nice to work in a smaller team, but the fact that we had to do one or two shots twice to film several perspectives was a slight disadvantage. We definitely had a super cool time, though.
How much DIY is actually in you. Is the cordless screwdriver is your constant companion?
I used to build a lot myself, from small ramps to a full foam pit, but over time I've certainly done a little less. In the last weeks, however, I've built more again with Hannes, who's totally into that. It was really fun to tinker around with a hammer, saw, and cordless screwdriver again.
Where do you always get your motivation to stay positive, look ahead and to produce cool videos again and again?
I totally take the motivation from biking. In my documentary, To The Limit, I described this in detail and explained it from my point of view. My motivation is the biking itself and the feeling when I finally land a trick I thought was impossible, or a project I worked on for a long time is finished. This feeling is terrific and for me, as an athlete, it's the greatest motivation.
Of course, I'm also totally happy when I can cheer up some people with a fun video. Especially lately, I get messages from people telling me how much my videos help them to stay positive at the moment and this motivates me enormously to continue producing exciting content.
MTB trials rider Fabio Wibmer jumps over someone doing yoga on his bike during the filming of his video, Home Office. © HANNES BERGER
What message do you want to give your fans with this video?
I think the most important thing is that even in such an unusual and difficult situation, you can still remain creative and take the positive out of it. That's how really cool things can happen in times like these. You can work on ideas that you've had in your head for a while, but never put into practice.