X Games Aspen to keep Snowmobile Freestyle
The Winter X Games will keep the snowmobiling freestyle event as part of its program, adding extra safety precautions following Caleb Moore's death from injuries he sustained in a crash last January in Aspen.
“Following a review, we’ve determined to continue staging the Snowmobile Freestyle competition at X Games Aspen. As always, we worked closely with athletes, risk management specialists and sport organizers in making this determination,“ said an ESPN spokesperson in a statement.
ESPN, which sanctions and televises the X Games, announced Wednesday that one of the new requirements will be that riders wear body vests. Moore's 450-pound sled rolled over him after he under-rotated a backflip attempt.
The snowmobiles also must now be equipped with "ski springs," which keep the ski tips facing upward to allow greater ground clearance.
There will be added perimeter protection for fans after a snowmobiler in the best trick competition fell off his machine with the throttle stuck in January, sending it veering into the crowd. That event has been eliminated.