MUNICH -- Swedish rider Anton Thelander won the X Games debut of the Red Bull Phenom amateur contest on Sunday on the same course used for the debut of Mountain Bike Slopestyle at X Games Munich. Thelander emerged from a field of six finalists between the ages of 15 and 19 who were selected based on video submissions.
"I didn't have a good first run, but I landed my flatspin on the second jump of my second run and it went smooth after that," Thelander said. "It's been a great week at X Games and now I have to figure out what to do for my video part."
As the grand-prize winner, Thelander will be working with Red Bull to produce a profile video highlighting his skills.
"The Mountain Bike Slopestyle course itself blew my mind," said skateboard legend Steve Caballero, who has been the public face of the Red Bull Phenom contest and says he's honored to be giving back to action sports. Caballero got his own breakthrough as an amateur in 1979, when at 14 years old, he was given the opportunity to ride for Powell-Peralta Skateboards. He became one of skateboarding's first video celebrities as a member of the Bones Brigade.
"I remember what it meant to me to get the leg up, and it was important to me to be part of this effort to identify and help out some unknown skaters and BMX and mountain bike riders who might not have gotten a chance otherwise," Caballero told XGames.com. "Now there's no excuses: We've opened the door for people who might not have been in the right place or don't have the backing, or whatever other barriers there might have been. For this contest all you needed was a camera and your skill, and that gave you a chance to compete and get noticed."
The other five mountain bike finalists from the video contest competing in Munich were Raymond George (U.S.), Matt Jones (U.K.), Louis Reboul (France), Antti Rissanen (Finland) and Tom van Steenbergen (Canada). All six videos are online at RedBullPhenom.com.
The finalists from the Red Bull Phenom skate and BMX video contests who will be competing at X Games Los Angeles will be announced on July 12. The submitted videos are online now.
"I'm excited and curious to see how it works out, because video skating is one thing but skating or riding when the pressure's on is another," Caballero said. "Either way these videos are a great way to get noticed and it's been cool to see how video technology has progressed and helped progress these sports since we first started making those Bones Brigade videos."
Mountain Bike Slopestyle finals also debut Sunday at X Games Munich.