I'm not one to idolize people...quite the opposite really. I usually try to find fault in them to make myself feel better. The only ones I haven't been able to put beneath me yet are ddac, Cheeto, and pcad...but their times are coming.
Who are the legends? Who's gonna be one? (is it possible to become legendary at this point?)
My vote is spawned from Dan's post about Steve Peat. He's the British PIMP. Cop glasses and all. Then there's HB...I love that freakin' dork. I used to put Gary Fisher up there b/c of his marketing savvy and all he's done to get good bikes into blue-collar hands...but he's probably caused as many "marketing hype" negatives as he has marketing positives. Still though...he deserves props. Mr. Kelly...there's a good one. Go to his website sometime...great history there, CK! I had B.Lopes on a pedestal until I heard about how arrogant he could be...now I just don't know. He's a fun person to watch race though. The King of Smooth. How 'bout Eric Carter!!! Yah man! He's old, he's fast, he's always smiling! Hans Rey? Hans Rey! Missy the Missle Giove!! Tomac is in there somewhere.
It's going to be difficult for any new kid to become a MTB legend I presume. There's something about the history and development involved in early MTB culture and evolution that makes the older crowd stand out. It's like with sk8boarding...nobody...no matter how many consecutive flip tricks or rotations they will incorporate into a run will be as legendary as Tony Hawk. The early Bones Brigade and SC/Dogtown sk8ers that helped shape the early stages of the sport are the ones who become legends.
Will they remain fixtures, or will they fade away:
Andreu Lacondeguy is headed the right direction but I don't know how much more he could incorporate into a run...we'll see how time treats the kid. I think he's gonna have to cross over and sweep WCDH to reach it.
Aaron Chase...great attitude, great style. I could see him using his popularity to progress the sport and awareness.
Same with Ryan Leech...sure, there are better trials guys, but he's pushing for something bigger than "no dabbing". Have to keep and eye on him to see where he's taking it.
I think Palmers come-back could seal the deal for him...we'll see how well he races now, but his "I don't give a flyin'...attitude" back in the day was pretty refreshing against the "clean cut" crowd.