French rider Jeremy "Jey" Rouanet unveiled a new body varial trick he's calling "le Roulette" during Thursday's qualifying rounds for the 2012 Red Bull X-Fighters Madrid finals that take place Friday. The trick is similar to the Carolla body varial that won Chuck Carothers Moto X Best Trick gold at X Games in 2004, but makes use of a rotor-grip handle mounted on the stem of his bike that Rouanet has been using in his La Kermesse de Jey FMX shows around Europe.
Rouanet won a wild card invitation to compete last month at Red Bull X-Fighters Istanbul before that event was canceled and is making his X-Fighters debut -- his first major international event -- this week.
According to his X-Fighters bio, Rouanet and fellow French rider Thomas Pagès are regular training partners. Pagès, ranked fifth overall on the 2012 X-Fighters series, is planning to bring a body varial to no-footed can-can to Friday's competition. Rouanet is better known as a show rider, and he'll have his work cut out for him on Friday as tour leaders Todd Potter, Levi Sherwood, Javier Villegas, Rob Adelberg and Pagès battle it out at what has become the midway point for the abbreviated 2012 tour.
Rouanet's wild card invitation has prompted grumbling from a more prominent French rider on Wednesday: "Really wish I was riding there," wrote Rémi Bizouard, this year's UEM Freestyle MX European Champion and the current overall leader in the FIM Freestyle MX World Championship series, on his Facebook page. "Who thinks I deserve an invite to the upcoming X-Fighters Munich or Sydney rounds? I would love the chance to show my stuff against the rest of the world's best before the season is over!"
Friday's event will mark the 11th year of the X-Fighters tour's most iconic venue, Madrid's historic Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas bullring. The X-Fighters tour's next stop is Aug. 11 at Munich's Olympic Stadium and concludes Oct. 6 at Cockatoo Island in Sydney, Australia.