American rider Nate Adams claimed victory at the third stop of the Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour 2009 in Fort Worth (Texas, USA) on Saturday night, however it was the Aussie riders that really knocked the hats of the crowd. In the Lone Star State 22,000 fans witnessed an FMX sensation as Australian Cameron Sinclair landed two double backflips in competition and rode off with third place.
It was a night of intense action on the 4,200 m³ of dirt that made up the huge course in Texas, comprising 15 different kickers catapulting the riders 15 metres into the air and 40 metres across the arena. At the start of the event the crowd fell silent as Thomas Pagès (FRA) became the first man to attempt a frontflip in competition before losing control of his bike and hitting the ground hard. The Frenchman had to be taken off to have a hip injury examined by the medical team.
While stifling 41-degree heat in Texas got the European riders in particular somewhat hot under the collar, Australian Cameron Sinclair managed to keep cool with the 24-year-old from Melbourne landing two double backflips in the main event.
“There has never been a double backflip in competition before. I don’t really care about the fact I was eliminated in the semis – I’m just happy I’m more or less healthy!” Sinclair had to be helped off his bike after both tricks as the hard landing from a height of 10 metres had resulted in serious bruising of the Australian’s bones.
Mat Rebeaud (SUI) benefitted from Sinclair’s injury and advanced to the Final where he came up against the man who was ultimately to win the event, Nate Adams, after he had defeated Japanese rider Eigo Sato in his semi-final.
One of the other Aussie riders, winner of the last Tour stop in Calgary, our own daredevil Robbie “Maddo” Maddison, was determined not be upstaged and showed that Texas is a place for real men. Maddo dislocated a shoulder after landing heavily before then popping it back in himself.
“I couldn’t stop. The fans were just phenomenal and I really wanted to show one more trick,” explained the holder of several world records as he finished fifth on the night.
Nate Adams underlined the status of the event after the victory in his homeland: “Red Bull X-Fighters is the very top of FMX. There is nothing like winning against such world-class athletes.”
Eigo Sato now leads the overall standing of the international FMX tour with 215 points, closely followed by Mat Rebeaud (210 points) and Robbie Maddison (145 points). Despite their strong position in the table, both Sato and Rebeaud are still without a win in the 2009 season.
The 2009 Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour kicked off in Mexico City in March followed by an inaugural Canadian stop in Calgary last month. Following yesterday’s Fort Worth event, the tour will head for Madrid’s Las Ventas bullring, hosting its eighth consecutive event, on July 16-17. The 2009 series finale will then take place at London’s Battersea Power Station on August 22.