Monster Energy congratulates its team of Moto X athletes on claiming medals in every single motocross event on the second day of X Games 2022.
RAMONA, Calif., July 22, 2022 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — The motocross action was off the charts at X Games! Monster Energy congratulates its team of Moto X athletes on claiming medals in every single motocross event on the second day of X Games 2022. On Thursday, a total of five Moto X competitions as well as BMX Dirt were contested at the 40-acre “Slayground” facility in Ramona, California, with Monster Energy athletes taking home six medals overall; two gold, three silver and one bronze medal.
The intense Moto X Best Whip final saw Belgian team rider Julien Vanstippen take the gold with Axell Hodges in close pursuit taking silver. Hodges then defended last year’s gold medal in the Moto X 110’s discipline and earned his third medal of the day with silver in Moto X QuarterPipe High Air. In the Moto X Best Trick final, Josh Sheehan from Donnybrook, Australia, claimed the silver medal in an elite field and also clinched bronze in Moto X Freestyle.
Presented by Monster Energy as the official energy drink partner of X Games, the 65th edition of X Games is contested with no spectators in attendance and broadcast live to global audiences. For five action-packed days, viewers from across the globe get to witness X Games history written by the world elite in BMX, Moto X, and Skateboarding. More than 110 athletes from 14 countries are competing for a total of 57 medals across 19 medal disciplines.
On Thursday, Monster Energy team rider Axell Hodges opened his legendary “Slayground” compound for competitions across six medal events: Moto X Freestyle, Best Whip, Best Trick, QuarterPipe High Air, Moto X 110s as well as BMX Dirt.
Here’s how the action unfolded on Day 2 of X Games 2022 for team Monster Energy:
Moto X Freestyle: Monster Energy’s Josh Sheehan Rises to the Podium with a Bronze-Medal Finish
A long day at the Slayground in Ramona kicked off with the Moto X Freestyle final. Out of the eight finalists stepping to the massive compound, four hailed from Australia with additional competitors from Belgium, France, Japan, and Germany.
For X Games 2022, riders faced an extra-large freestyle course: Spanning around 80,000 square feet, the Slayground was peppered with 13 different features such as super kickers, quarterpipes, and gap jumps up to 120 feet long. In order to provide riders with enough time to cover the entire obstacle course, the clock time for runs increased from the traditional 75 seconds to 90 seconds.
Monster Energy’s Josh Sheehan came into the competition as the silver medalist from X Games 2021. Facing heat from fellow Australian Rob Adelberg, the 36-year-old from Donnybrook, Australia, put down a perfect first run on the expansive Slayground course peppered with a variety of obstacles.
On his second run, Sheehan scored his highest rating of the day. He covered the course with a heart attack, seat grab Indy flip, flair off the quarterpipe to bank, 360 over the centerpiece, ruler backflip, huge no-hander double backflip, massive turndown whip, and a double grab for 88.33 points and the bronze medal. Plus, Sheehan was not done for the day and made another podium run in Moto X Best Trick.
Sheehan is known for landing the first (and only) triple backflip on a motorcycle, documented in a YouTube video with 13.2 million views.
Moto X Best Whip: Monster Energy’s Julien Vanstippen Takes Gold in Down-to-the-Wire Final
Keeping the motocross action going, riders put on a spectacular air show in the Moto X Best Whip event. In a twelve-minute jam session, eight finalists sent the most contorted “Whip” aerials – leaning their bikes sideways in the air – over the massive dirt gap at the Slayground. Actually, make that TWO dirt gaps: For the first time at X Games, riders were hitting a 75-foot jump followed by a 120-foot jump in their runs.
As the session got underway, Slayground host Axell Hodges proceeded to dominate the competition. Right from the start, the 25-year-old motocross icon from Encinitas, California, who already owned silver and two bronze in the discipline, went the highest and most stylish across both jumps. Soaring above the rest of the pack, Hodges demonstrated his dominance on the 120-foot jump by sending fully backward whips in signature “Slay” style.
But in a major upset, one rider toppled the order on the final attempt of the day: 25-year-old Monster Energy rider Julien Vanstippen from Ophain, Belgium, came to the Slayground fresh off a Best Whip bronze from X Games Chiba 2022. Throughout the session, Vanstippen held second place right behind Hodges, only to up the ante at the last second. On his final run, the Belgian sent the day’s biggest turndown whip across the 120-foot chasm to clinch the gold medal in what was only his second appearance in an X Games contest.
“I gave my best in the last run. I was focused to go upside down and I did it. It’s Belgium’s National Day today, thanks to all my sponsors, friends, and team. I got it!” said Monster Energy’s Vanstippen upon taking Moto X Best Whip gold at X Games 2022.
This last-second turn of events left Hodges walking away with the silver medal after a strong showing on his home turf. On that note, Hodges’ “Slayground” video series – the third installment filmed entirely at the Slayground compound – has generated 13 million views on Monster Energy’s YouTube channel.
Moto X 110’s: Monster Energy’s Axell Hodges Defends Gold Medal in Discipline
For a change of pace, the Moto X 110’s contest saw riders switching their dirt bikes for smaller-scale pit bikes and take on a mini motocross playground with lots of dirt hits and hip jumps. Introduced at X Games 2021, the event was pioneered by Monster Energy riders Axell Hodges and Pat Casey (BMX) for going big (and getting creative) on small bikes.
As the defending gold medalist from X Games 2021, Slayground host Axell Hodges put on a masterclass of pushing the limits on 110-class bikes. Highlights included footplant seat bounce, backflip no-footer over the centerpiece, superman, massive 360 aerial over the dirt gap and huge can-can off the quarterpipe. Hodges also flexed his bike control by landing manual seat stand across the rainbow box. Hodges defended his gold medal and claimed the win in the discipline’s second outing.
“We ride 110’s all the time for fun. And now it’s an event! Maybe not the most serious event but it’s good to loosen up, go out, and have some fun,” said Monster Energy’s Axell Hodges upon winning the Moto X 110’s event at X Games 2022.
Thursday’s Moto X 110’s gold medal marked the fourth X Games gold for Hodges. And he still had another chance at claiming precious hardware at X Games 2022 in the QuarterPipe Highest Air event!
Moto X Best Trick: Monster Energy’s Josh Sheehan Claims Silver as 14th X Games Medal
Shifting back to regular-sized dirt bikes, the Moto X Best Trick final showcased the level of progression in the sport. Riders were judged on their single most creative and difficult trick landed anywhere on the thirteen-feature course at Slayground. With only two runs to post a high score, competitors had no margin for error to clinch an X Games medal in the event.
For Monster Energy’s Josh Sheehan, Moto X Best Trick provided the perfect opportunity to draw on his deep bag of tricks and take another podium spot at X Games 2022. The decorated Australian Moto X icon posted his highest-scoring trick on Run 1: A fully extended no-hander double backflip earned Sheehan 89.00 points and the silver medal at the Slayground.
The silver medal from Moto X Freestyle increased Sheehan’s impressive career count to 14 medals (1 gold, 7 silver, 6 bronze).
Moto X QuarterPipe High Air: Monster Energy’s Hodges Takes Silver in Dramatic Battle
Closing out an epic day at the Slayground, the focus shifted to high-flying aerials in the Moto X QuarterPipe High Air final. Originated at X Games Minneapolis 2018, the medal event was contested on Slayground’s 18-feet tall quarterpipe as the takeoff into a 26-feet high landing at a 60-degree angle.
Riders took turns throwing their best airs in a jam session, turning 180 degrees in the air with competition heights measured at the highest point. As the final intensified, competition host Hodges revisited his rivalry with last year’s QuarterPipe High Air gold medalist Colby Raha.
Straight out the gate, Hodges raised the bar by setting a new record height: Surpassing the previous record of 40-feet, 9-inches he soared all the way to 48 feet. But on the very last attempt of the contest, Raha ended up having the last word and pushed the record to 49 feet for the gold medal, as Hodges walked away with silver.
Hodges’ busy schedule at X Games 2022 paid off: He came to the event with nine medals and after earning Moto X 110s gold as well as silver in Best Whip and QuarterPipe High Air walked away with 12 X Games medals under his belt (4 gold, 6 silver, 2 bronze).
Thanks to Axell for hosting a world-class event, and thanks to the crew at ESPN for the international broadcast!
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Stay tuned for more epicness to come from X Games 2022! On Friday, the action sports wonderland known as the California Training Facility (CATF) will host the BMX Street final with Monster Energy riders gunning for the podium. Don’t miss it!
Over the course of five action-packed days, more than 15 hours of the best X Games 2022 competitions will air on ESPN, ABC and ESPN2, as well as ESPN+ and the ESPN App. All competitions will stream live on ESPN+ and be available on @XGames YouTube. X Games content will also be presented across the globe through international syndication partners.
Visit http://www.monsterenergy.com for exclusive updates from X Games 2022 including photos, videos, and contest results as they happen. Follow Monster Energy on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok.
About Monster Energy
Based in Corona, California, Monster Energy is the leading marketer of energy drinks and alternative beverages. Refusing to acknowledge the traditional, Monster Energy supports the scene and sport. Whether motocross, off-road, NASCAR, MMA, BMX, surf, snowboard, ski, skateboard, or the rock and roll lifestyle, Monster Energy is a brand that believes in authenticity and the core of what its sports, athletes and musicians represent. More than a drink, it’s the way of life lived by athletes, sports, bands, believers, and fans. See more about Monster Energy including all of its drinks at http://www.monsterenergy.com.
About X Games
For more than 25 years, X Games has successfully organized action sports events in 12 countries around the globe, attracting more than six million attendees. Since its inception in 1995, the X Games have become the leading action sports competition and lifestyle brand, spotlighting the world’s best action sports athletes in BMX, Skateboard and Moto X at the X Games, and Ski and Snowboard at the winter version of the X Games against the backdrop of each individual host city. Learn more at http://www.xgames.com.
Kimberly Paige Dresser, Indie Agency, Inc., (949) 300-5546, [email protected]
SOURCE Monster Energy