X Games can be considered the Olympics of action sports, especially for the freestyle motocross events. So it's no wonder the sport's top riders come ready to lay it all on the line, even if that means risking serious injury and possibly worse.
At the third stop of the 2013 Global X Games tour in Foz de Iguacu, Brazil a handful of riders had significant injuries. Here's an update on these athletes and a look at their prognosis for recovery.
During practice for the Speed & Style competition Hudson, 22, broke his left tibia, relatively low on the leg with multiple fractures. The timetable to be out for this injury is about four to eight weeks depending on healing.
Hudson mistimed a table top to a single inside a rhythm section and ended up casing the second single that would have made his attempt a triple had he pulled it. He came up about 2 to 3 feet short, and he was blown off the back of the bike. The initial impact or the (case) of the jump caused his tibula to fracture, ultimately ending his first X Games experience a day after Hudson had upset defending gold medalist Ronnie Renner to win in the Step Up competition.
"Bryce did everything he could to prepare for this event, more so than probably all the other competitors," Hudson's agent, Dan McGranahan, said. "He couldn't believe he had done it [winning gold], though he had done everything to prepare to win it."
Hudson had surgery Friday, and McGranahan recalled what the young rider from Temecula, Calif., told him after he was injured in Brazil: "I knew I was hurt, but there's that moment when you don't want to accept the reality and you hope that you're OK. The best way to describe it is, no matter how loud it is outside, it's deafening silence inside your mind, you can't hear anything and you're in a hole inside your head and you feel so alone."
Hudson's next targeted event is X Games Los Angeles on Aug. 1-4.
Strong suffered a concussion and fractured the tibia in his right leg, although he won't require surgery. The expected timetable to heal his tibia is about six weeks in a cast and another four weeks to be back riding.
"Jacko" started off his run on fire with his infamous front flip straight out of the gate, electrifying the crowd. On a setup jump leading into the 75-foot elevated ramp hit, Strong overjumped a right-side up cliffhanger that caused him to lose his drive heading into the elevated 75-footer, where he went for a backflip cliffhanger. Not getting the rotation he needed to complete the flip, he nose-picked (under-rotated) into the landing and crashed, sending him rag-dolling frighteningly to the bottom of the landing.
Asked when he might make his return to competition, Strong said, "Definitely not Barcelona, I might make Germany [X Games Munich on June 27-30], but definitely I'll be at L.A."
Bianconcini fractured the left radius bone near his wrist, which will require surgery and an estimated 30 days to heal, said former FMX competitor Alvaro Dal Farra, who is a friend of the Italian rider.
While testing out the Step Up lip during practice, Bianconcini came up short and cased the landing. All of his forward momentum came to an abrupt stop and caused the fracture in his left arm. Bianconcini did compete in the competition but was favoring that wrist. When his final attempt resulted in him getting off-axis in the air, Bianconcini could not hold on while landing and was blown off the back of the bike.
Bianconcini will miss X Games Barcelona but could be back for X Games Munich.