Josh Sheehan won gold in Moto X Freestyle with a score of 93.33.
“This is surreal,” Sheehan said. “It’s been a hectic month of training. I’m just so happy, I’m so stoked.”
Rob Adelberg took sedon with a 91.66, while Clinton Moore took third with a 91. Taka Higashino also posted a 91, but Moore took bronze since he had a slightly higher score — 91 to 90.66 — on his first run.
Jarryd McNeil and Libor Podmol shared the first gold medal of the 2016 X Games. McNeil and Podmol each cleared the bar at 33 feet in Moto X Step Up — essentially a high-jump competition on motorcycles — while Massimo Bianconcini took bronze after clearing 32 feet.
The three medalists locked up a top-three position after the rest of the eight-man field bowed out at 30 feet or lower.
“It’s great to win and start off like this,” McNeil said in a post-podium interview. “I knew what he (Podmol) was going to be capable of so I had to be ready.”
Motox X Step was one of two kick-off events Thursday, and both were held at the dirt track about a mile away from Circuit of the Americas. Shuttles were setup to take spectators to the dirt track, which was built last year for flat-track racing.
In Flat-Track won the gold with a time of 6:35.907. Kenny Coolbeth Jr. was the silver medalist, while Brad Baker claimed bronze.
It stayed dry Thursday, but the schedule was slightly altered with storms set to role into the area later. The last chance qualifier in Flat-Track was cancelled to quicken the schedule, while Thursday’s planned concert by Reverend Horton Heat was cancelled due to track conditions.
Celebrating it’s third and final year in Austin, the X Games didn’t have a downtown kick-off event like years past. The two events Thursday were well-attended at the smaller venue, but lacked the buzz of the 2014 and 2015 events that took place downtown.
BMX rider Steve McCann was awake and alert after his scary crash in Big Air Doubles, according to X Games officials.
McCann was being transported to the hospital for observation and will be assessed for a head injury.
McCann hit his head on the ramp on his fourth run in Big Air Doubles. He was separated from his bike and slid off the main ramp onto the exit ramp, where he was quickly attended to by the medical staff.
Scott Speed defended his RallyCross gold medal, edging out Steve Sarpin by a slim margin.
The last American to drive in Formula One, Speed has now won the past three X Games RallyCross gold medals dating back to 2013.
Speed ran most of the race with a severely damaged bumper, but it didn’t stop him from taking the lead from Sebastian Eriksson in the fifth lap. He then held the lead for the rest of the race and took the joker – an extra turn each competitor must take once – on the seventh lap.
Speed finished the race in 6 minutes, 20.843 seconds. Sarpin crossed the finish line at 6:21.80.
Eriksson finished third, even though the Swedish driver blew a tire and was running on the metal rim for the final four laps of the 10-lap race.