Best of X Games 2013
There And Back Again
What a long, strange trip it's been ... X Games traveled around the world in 2013, starting in the familiar confines of Aspen, Colo., in January, then returning to Tignes, France, in March for the winter X Games. Summer started in South America with the debut of X Games Foz do Iguau in Brazil in April, then went across the Atlantic Ocean to Barcelona in May, followed by Munich in June. Finally, after over a decade in Southern California, the X Games said goodbye to Los Angeles in August. Here are 20 of the best moments from the global X Games tour.
Martinod had the biggest comeback of the year. She won Women's Ski SuperPipe at X Games Tignes after a six-year hiatus from competition. "My coach Greg [Guenet] was saying, 'Can you hear those people shouting at the bottom just for you?'" Martinod said. "I wanted to ski the best I could, no matter what would have been the result."
Higashino Sweeps Freestyle
Taka Higashino cemented himself as the most exciting rider in X Games FMX with his thrilling wins in Moto X Freestyle at X Games Brazil and Los Angeles. Weather limited Freestyle in Barcelona and Munich, so an X Games showdown between Higashino and the other FMX rider at the top of his game, Thomas Pags, never materialized. Fans hope they will face off in 2014.
Turski Four-Peats in Tignes
Kaya Turski just missed a four-peat in Women's Ski Slopestyle in Aspen, winning silver. But she redeemed herself in Tignes by scoring her seventh career X Games gold and becoming the first woman to four-peat in Ski Slopestyle.
Nick Goepper broke through with his first gold in Ski Slopestyle at X Games Aspen, Chad Kerley ended Garrett Reynolds' dominance in BMX Street at X Games Los Angeles, and Curren Caple (pictured) surprised defending champion Pedro Barros in Munich with his first Skateboard Park win.
Gymkhana GRID, a head-to-head race with spins and drifts, made its X Games debut Aug. 3 at the Irwindale Events Center during X Games Los Angeles. Seven of the eight drivers who competed are shown in this sequential photo of the container feature of the course. Tanner Foust won the gold.
I-Pod's YOLO Flip
Iouri Podladtchikov landed the first Cab double cork 1440 in competition during the Men's Snowboard SuperPipe final at X Games Tignes. He called it the YOLO Flip, after the unstoppable teen meme: You Only Live Once.
Fans in Barcelona witnessed the first 1080 on a MegaRamp in X Games history when Mitchie Brusco dropped in for his bronze medal-winning run.
X Games Music
In 2013, X Games invited headlining bands and DJs from around the world like Calvin Harris, Detonautas, Major Lazer, 50 Cent, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, among others. The tradition will continue next year when Phoenix and Tiesto take the stage at X Games.
The Real Series
To accompany the 2013 X Games global tour, the Real Series got the expansion treatment, too. Real Women, Real Surf and Real Ski Backcountry joined mainstays Real Snow, Real Street and Real Snow Backcountry to the popular video submission contest. Leticia Bufoni (pictured) barely edged out Ingrid Backstrom in a neck-and-neck final battle in the debut of Real Women.
Jake Brown's 720 Ollie
At X Games, tricks sometimes matter more than medals. Such was the case when Jake Brown landed the first 720 ollie in Skateboard Big Air history in his gap run at X Games Foz do Iguau. Brown took bronze, but the trick will go down as one of the hardest ever landed on a skateboard.
"Winning the race in Munich on three wheels is something I'll remember forever," Doran said. The RallyCross racer held off Ken Block with a flat left rear tire in a rain-soaked race at X Games Munich. "I don't think it's ever been done in rally or any form of auto racing that I know of," Doran said.
Triple Time in Aspen
At X Games Aspen 2013, Henrik Harlaut, pictured, landed the first nose butter triple cork 1620 to win Ski Big Air gold. Torstein Horgmo won Snowboard Big Air gold with a switch backside triple cork 1440, the first landed in competition. In Snowboard Slopestyle, X Games rookie Max Parrot got silver with the first triple cork landed in a slopestyle contest.
Kevin Robinson retires
At X Games Fox do Iguacu, BMX Big Air veteran Kevin Robinson dropped in to kick off another year of competition, only to be carted off the MegaRamp on a stretcher after suffering a mild concussion. Robinson recovered from his injury, but he remained off the bike for X Games Barcelona and X Games Munich. As X Games Los Angeles approached, Robinson slowly made the announcement public -- he was retiring from X Games competition following one last go in L.A. With runs preapproved by his wife and doctor, Robinson dropped into the MegaRamp at Irwindale Raceway, and one of the sport's most progressive BMX Big Air legends made a graceful departure. Robinson now focuses on anti-bullying rallies at schools throughout New England.
The Women's Moto X Racing event is 12 laps -- and every single one of them counts. In a crushing misjudgment, race leader Meghan Rutledge threw a fist in the air while sailing over the final jump of the course on the last lap, assuming she had a win in the bag. Her early claim cost her, though, as it distracted her from her landing. Vicki Golden passed a downed Rutledge to take gold. For Rutledge, crumpled over her handlebars in obvious distress, the silver medal provided little comfort.
Eight-peat with style
It was no secret that Jamie Bestwick made X Games history with the first eight-peat ever at X Games in BMX Vert. But for the hardened BMX fan, that aspect of Bestwick's time in Barcelona took a backseat to new vert tricks that Jamie laid down during his runs, including the very first seatgrab nac nac 540, with the added Bestwick height and style for good measure.
Bigger In Texas
X Games closed the curtain on Los Angeles in 2013, but opened the door to Austin, Texas. The Lone Star State's capital city signed on to host X Games for the next three years beginning in 2014. Boots and bandits, crooners and cruisers: Austin is about as eclectic a town as you can find, especially in the vast Western expanse of the biggest state in the Lower 48.
Sixth Time's The Charm
Dressed in intimidating black, Shaun White shined the brightest in Snowboard SuperPipe once again, claiming his sixth consecutive gold medal. Not to be outdone, Tucker Hibbert nearly lapped the field in his dominant sixth straight Snowmobile X win.