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'Dunga' in flip mode

Friday, January 04, 2013    

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IN the world of the fast and the fearless there are a few who rise above the pack.

Stunt bikers from across the island test the laws of gravity on a daily basis, pushing the limits and generating excitement every time they take their skills to the streets.

Damion 'Dunga' Hughes of the Montego Bay-based Rush Riders crew is one such person.

Drawn to biking from he was a teenager, the self-taught Hughes says stunting is a way to express the performer in him as he lives for the limelight.

Dunga, who earned his name from the former Brazilian World Cup captain, is known for his death-defying acrobatic stunts.

One involves bringing the bike to a halt and flipping over the motorcycle's handlebars.

"I haven't named it yet. Right now, I just call it 'flick off'. It took some careful calculations in my mind before I tried it for the first time because I knew I had to do it right. I could break my neck if I didn't. It took about four tries to get it," Hughes told Auto.

The 27-year-old daredevil was among a number of stunt riders giving spectators a show at Stunt Xplosion in Port Antonio, Portland, on Sunday.

According to Hughes, though it may look effortless, stunting takes years of dedicated practice to perfect. He confessed he is still not at the level he wants to be professionally.

"It all depends on how fast a learner you are. Don't rush, it takes dedication and you might even fall a few times. The first stunt I tried was a burnout; I practised every evening after work until I mastered it," he said.

Riding his modified Honda RR 600, equipped with an extra braking system and a bigger sprocket for more compression, Hughes has been a force to be reckoned with on the stunting scene. He revealed to Auto that he is working on a new trick but is keeping it under wraps until it is perfected.

— Jarmila Jackson

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