Big Air Skateboarding in the X Games, which ran August 2nd at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA, is one of the most popular events among fans globally. So when Jake Brown from Australia, pulled off an incredible 720 move over the 70-foot gap from the ceiling-suspended 60-foot downramp of the event’s mega ramp, even X Games champ Bob Burnquist who was last to go after Jake, thought his friend was assured the coveted gold. But Jake’s momentum proved too much. In seconds after pulling off the 720, his downspeed into the landing pipe propelled him up the other side where he was suspended some 40 feet before losing it, and crashing to the bottom of the pipe with an impact that was so hard, we heard a physical crack of bone to boards from the press pit, and noticed it blew off his sneakers.
The Staples Center crowd was shocked and silent for about 15 seconds, waiting to see if Jake was alive. It took another 5 minutes for Jake to come to, but miraculously, he did, and even walked away (before heading to the hospital).
While Jake was leading the pack into the finals, followed by Bob Burnquist, Bucky Lasek, Buster Halterman, Pierre Luc-Gagon, and Rob Lorifice, his Big Air that day is going down in history as the most memorable moment in the history of the event. Even Bobby Burnquist admitted that he thought of simply not going after seeing such a feat, so that Jake could take home the gold.
However Bob did go, and topped Jake’s final score, taking home the Men’s Skateboarding Big Air at the 13th ESPN X Games.
This Summer X Games marks the first live simulcast of the world’s largest action sports event reaching fans across Australia, Asia, Brazil, the Caribbean, Hong Kong, India, Israel, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, South America, Taiwan and the U.S. Like many other entertainment and media networks, ESPN has realized that fans of action sports, which draw heavily from youth culture, require having the action delivered as fast as possibly, before cell phone pics and YouTube videos get the word out first, rather than delivered in packaged formats weeks later. The simulcast on a variety of media platforms including internet marks a necessary step in sports and entertainment in general for reaching today’s youth viewership.
Athletes at the X Games compete in events including Skateboarding, Surfing, BMX Freestyle, Moto X, Skateboard, and Rally Car Racing.