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Stunt biker wows Field Days crowd

NEW HAVEN — Robbie Pfunder is not a fan of flinching.
For the bike stuntman, who wowed a crowd of fairgoers at the Addison County Fair & Field Days last Tuesday, every inch, and every flinch, matters — especially when kids are involved.
During one of Pfunder’s most impressive feats, audience volunteers Oscar and Maya formed a human high-bar, holding a cord roughly 40 inches in the air for Pfunder to hop over with his bike. As the audience held its breath, Pfunder completed the leap — and both kids jumped back.
“Okay, the name of the game here is, don’t move,” Pfunder said over his headset microphone, laughing nervously. “All you’ve got to do is hold the rope.”
So the kids got over their nerves and held the rope steadily as Pfunder completed two more jumps. The crowd oohed and aahed, and Oscar and Maya left with new bandanas and accomplished smiles.
That was only one segment of Pfunder’s 20-minute show, which featured abundant leaps around the small obstacle course he’d set up at the fairgrounds. After the show, well over a dozen kids lined up for autographed pictures of the Colorado-based biker, including his illustrious volunteers.
“How much did you think I was going to quote-unquote hit you when you were holding that?” Pfunder asked Oscar.
“Eh, not much,” Oscar replied. “You were doing pretty good.”
Pfunder himself considered this performance, the first of 12 that he would give at this week’s Field Days, a bigsuccess.
“That beat almost any crowd at the last fair I was at, and this was the very first show,” he said. “That was very promising.”
Pfunder has been performing stunt shows like these for about eight years, but riding professionally for close to twenty. Competitively, he’s had considerable success, winning several regional tournaments of the obstacle-clearing sport known as bike trials.
Between competitions, Pfunder takes his show on the road, performing at amusement parks, festivals, trade shows and fairs like this one. This year, however, marked his first-ever appearance at Field Days.
“It’s beautiful,” he said, gazing at the Green Mountains beyond the fairgrounds. “The last show I did was in Indiana — this is pretty far away from that.”
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