We can finally announce the setting for this year's series finale, a place called Cockatoo Island in the middle of Sydney Harbor. Cockatoo Island was a former penal colony where convicts were sent to work and live in isolation from the city. So it really feels quite appropriate for freestyle motocross riders.
The island really reminded me of Alcatraz -- not just for the obvious parallels of prisoner-island in the middle of the bay -- because there is just so much of the history and gnarly industrial complex left behind. If you consider it from a director's perspective, it's a dream because every shot yields some fantastic view of a building, rock wall or crane. Scenes from the movie 'Wolverine' were shot inside the large buildings and parts of the film set are still intact and look eerily real next to the original structures. It is kind of strange when you lean against one of the walls and it gives slightly, because it is made of wood and canvas.
Part of our rainy visit was to figure out the logistics of the event. Becuase this is an island, all the dirt, infrastructure and people have to come by water. Getting thousands of people on and off the island is going to be a real challenge, but one that the team in Sydney is more than willing to take on.
One of the wildest features of the course will be the view down harbor towards the famous Sydney Harbor Bridge. Once again, the X-Fighters event will showcase an iconic international backdrop and there will be no doubt of where this event is being held. I won't spoil any surprises, but the trip from the ferry landing to the huge FMX course on the island is also going to be a bit of an adventure, so expect to be entertained from the minute you step on dry land.
Australia is a hot bed of FMX talent and is one of the most savvy markets for the sport anywhere in the world and for that reason I get the feeling that these tickets are soon going to be hard to come by (they start selling on Sunday, Australia time!). How rabid are the Aussie fans for some X-Fighters action? Well, a year or so ago they put up a Facebook page imploring the event to come down to Oz and there were thousands of fans on the page.
This is where we get to wrap up the season and crown a World Tour Champion and that always means a good party is on tap. Let us know you're coming, and we'll put a shrimp on the barbie for ya.