Wondering thru my archives this morning I came upon the Danny Way SuperRamp folder. I remember this project coming together pretty quickly, looking over the files I am shocked at the price of the entire shoot. On paper, we were all in for 18K which is unbelievable. Danny's initial idea was a 20-foot tall quarter pipe and that Damon his brother would pull him into it via motorcycle. After the first call to Tim Pain, a roll-in was drawn up for the 40-foot wide ramp. Making the project into a half-pipe was Tim's idea and Danny was on board with that.
The initial drawing spec'd out 16-foot transitions with 2 feet of vert, if I remember correctly the transition final size was 18 feet with 2 feet of vert. The roll-in height was 33 feet in total with the overall ramp being 40 feet wide. Tim and his crew built the ramp in four days, Danny showed up for first day of completion and a decision was made to increase the transition at the bottom of the roll-in. On the second day of skating is when everything went down.
There was a very small crew on set for the shoot, mainly photographers and filmers. Colin McKay, Ty Evans, Jason Ellis, and Danny rode that day, with everyone getting tricks. Up to this point, the tallest vert ramp I knew of had only reached a mere 13 feet tall. Some skateparks had 15-foot bowls but the SuperRamp was the first of its size for a vert ramp. Danny drew inspiration for the project from the 24 foot tall quarter pipe Matt Hoffman built for his World Record "highest air" a few years prior. Danny skated the SuperRamp as if he had thought about it for years, with no signs of being intimidated or fearful. Everyone in attendance was blown away, the speed was crazy, the wheel noise very loud. I stood on top of the roll-in and was in shock, and watching Danny charge down it was mind-melting. The World Record attempts were unimaginable, going into this day the record was in the 11-foot range measuring from the coping or deck height. Within a short amount of attempts, Danny was blasting airs in the 16-foot range and set the record at 16.5 feet. I was shooting the attempts for our DC Shoe Co. print campaign, I had rented the helicopter merely for a background prop for the shoot. During the record attempts, Danny was already thinking about taking things to the next level and asked me if we could use the helicopter to make bomb-drops out of. This was a bit shocking so we asked the pilot and he agreed to the attempts. I couldn't believe what was transpiring, no one could have imagined Dannys request to jump out of the helicopter into the ramp that day. These kinds of ideas truly come from legends, a plan was hatched. I took Ty Evans up to film inside the helicopter while I rode shotgun helping the pilot maneuver into position. The first attempt was bad, the craft moved too far out over the coping, and Danny pretty much landed on the flat bottom. He was hurt, later found out that he compressed his spine. Injured he pushed on and made a second attempt and was so close to making it. He landed the third one and rode up and onto the opposing deck, everyone in attendance went crazy. Nothing like this had ever been done before and it was all spur of the moment. Thinking back, it was unbelievable how it all lined up, Danny thought outside the box, Tim was there to make the adjustments to the ramp, all the photographers were in place, we had all the right permits, insurance, and release forms, and the pilot was down for the stunt, it was a legendary moment in skateboarding history.