ESPN X Games 13

Rookies & Veterans Unite for Extreme Week in LA

The 2007 Summer X Games dropped on Los Angeles last week and MO was there to bring you the excitement and results from the moto-related action.

The 13th Summer X Games saw the addition of another motorcycle event, with Moto X Racing joining the previous high jump, supermoto, best freestyle trick and freestyle program. But Moto X Racing isn't the motocross racing we're accustomed to, as the 16-rider field is broken into four heat races consisting of four riders. The winner of each heat race automatically qualifies for the final. The remaining 12 riders are divided into two, six-man semi-final races, with the winner of each semi qualifying for the six-rider final.

Many of the usual AMA MX/SX riders were found in the starting gates, including Mike and Jeff Alessi, Kevin Windham, Grant Langston, Chad Reed and the semi-retired Ricky Carmichael, along with X Games golden boy Travis Pastrana. AMA SX champ James Bubba Stewart was the notable absentee, along with his Kawasaki teammate Tim Ferry. It made for an exciting new addition to the X Games lineup.
Insane tricks and intense competition made some fans nervous and hungry. Freestyle sensation Scott Murray poses with X Games icon Travis Pastrana

Last year's events and medal sweep by Travis Pastrana was still on the tongues of everyone in attendance of this year. Will he come back and continue to be the winningest X Games moto-athlete? Will he do the double back flip again? Will there be a new golden boy for 2007? Answers include yes, no and yeah, a few superstars emerged this year. One name stands
above the rest in my memories of the '07 Games, Scott Murray.

We internet fanatics can chalk up another pop-culture conquest in the annals of the Google database with the name Scott Murray. Last year's momentous double backflip in the Best Trick competition by Travis Pastrana was repeated, well, attempted by only one rider this year. He's a newbie to the scene as well as competitive freestyle riding. Straight out of the
northern woods of Helps, Michigan, and into his first freestyle competition, Scott Murray fought his way into the event, gaining entry to the comp barely a week beforehand and blasting to the top of everyone's watch list for 2008.

Murray went big on his first-ever X Games run at the launch ramp. Bringing his own launch carpet and approaching the jump from nearly a standstill, he wasn't able to stick the landing, but learned the hard way about tuning his bike for less humidity than in Michigan. But at least he landed the respect of his newfound peers. "Travis is a pillar," Murray tells me, "I'm just shadowed by his greatness." Check out Scott's credential application right here.

Otherwise, the Games went off with a bang, and much smoother than last year's event. Scheduling and venue shifts put most of the motor-centric events on one day for easier spectator enjoyment. Unfortunately, Pastrana wasn't atop any podium this year. His only medal was a Bronze in the Rally Car race, "But I'm still having a great time,"he said.

With the likes of Murray and the introduction of the G.O.A.T. into X Games rider rosters, The 2008 Summer X Games will undoubtedly be stronger and wilder.

Kyle Loza'a body varial air, titled the Volt, brings him Gold in the Moto X Best Trick competition.

Moto X Best Trick

High-flying excitement and anticipation filled the air in the Staples center. Everyone hoped to see something new and outrageous in the freestyle motocross event. Last year Pastrana performed the first ever double backflip in competition. This year he co-announced the event from the sidelines, opening the door for newcomers to shine. And shine they did, two of the three medalists were rookies. Still another (Scott Murray) attempted to land the double backflip on his first of two runs.

We spoke to Scott after his failed attempt and he's more pumped than ever to come back next year. He's "super stoked" to have met the other big names in the sport like Deegan and Twitch. "They're all great guys and very welcoming," he said. Scott has already been invited back to perform in the 2008 Summer X Games, and knowing him, the double backflip is just the beginning.

Our gold medalist and rookie-no-more Kyla Loza set the bar high early performing his body varial on his first run. Rotating counter-clockwise and vertically above the airborne motorcycle (see practice run), Loza shocked the crowd with unassuming movie-promo riding gear and an unfamiliar name. Kyle's name is here to stay.

The Summer X Games 2007 started off with a bang, rushing a rookie to golden glory in the Moto X Best Trick and put newbies in both first and third positions. Adam Jones - the only veteran on the podium - took Silver and Todd Potter landed a “Kiss of Death” backflip for the bronze.

Moto X Best Trick Final Standings
from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA
on August 2, 2007
1. Kyle Loza Trabuco Canyon, CA 94.20
2. Adam Jones Minden, NV 91.00
3. Todd Potter   Temecula, CA 91.00
4. Mat Rebeaud Payerne, Switzerland 89.40
5. Jeremy Lusk San Diego, CA 87.60
6. Remi Bizouard Bergerac, France 85.80
7. Jim McNeil Phoenix, AZ 85.60
8. Brian Deegan Temecula, CA 83.40
9. Jeremy Stenberg Winchester, CA 83.20
10. Scott Murray Helps, MI 66.00

Moto X Step Up 

While the sun was still shining Friday, a host of practice and qualifying rounds in the Moto X leg took place.

Friday night brought more high-flying action, with height being the focus for the Moto X Step Up high jump. Though no records were broken Ronnie Renner took the gold medal aboard the only four-stroke motorcycle in the competition. Despite having more rotating mass in the flywheel, and the bike overall, Renner knows best how to whip his bike around. And that's why he won. "Don't be surprised if every bike in next year's show is a four-stroke," Renner boldly predicted.

Moto X Step Up Final Standings
held at Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA
on August 3, 2007
1. Ronnie Renner Westminster, CA 33.00
2. Brian Deegan Temecula, CA 32.00
3. Matt Buyten   Minden, NV 32.00
4. Tommy Clowers Ramona, CA 32.40
5. Jeremy McGrath Encinitas, CA 26.00
Ronnie Renner makes jumping 33 feet in Friday night's Moto X Step Up look easy.
Moto X Supermoto

On Saturday at the Home Depot Center in Carson, CA, a sellout crowd numbering near 30,000 had a full plate to enjoy, starting with the supermoto race. In the end, the X Games lent its karma to Mark Burkhart, who after watching supermoto veteran Jeff Ward lead the race for 32 of the 35 laps, snatched victory from Ward in the last laps. Mark, like a good grasshopper, learned of patience this year and took home the gold medal in the Moto X Supermoto event, swapping the 1-2 finishing position we'd seen at last year's event between Burkhart and Ward.

Moto X SuperMoto Final Standings
from The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA
on August 4, 2007
1. Mark Burkhart Pataskala, OH
2. Jeff Ward Newport Beach, CA
3. David Pingree Temecula, CA
4. Ivan Lazzarini Pesaro, Italy
5. Jeremy McGrath Encinitas, CA
6. Micky Dymond Placentia, CA
7. Steve Drew Buckeye, AZ
8. Robbie Horton Martinez, CA
9. Troy Herfoss Goulburn, Australia
10. Tyler Evans Hollywood Hills, CA
11. Benny Carlson West Bend, WI
12. Adam Cini Brisbane, Australia
13. Brandon Currie Anaheim Hills, CA
14. Gary Trachy Orange, CA
15. Carey Hart   Las Vegas, NV
16. Eric Sorby   Corona, CA
17. Chris Fillmore Oxford, MI
18. Chad Reed Tampa, FL
19. Stephane Chambon Entraigues, France
20. Darryl Atkins Tokoroa, New Zealand
Mark Burkhart takes the Gold.
Veteran racer and supermoto superstar Jeff Ward settled for silver in the Moto X Supermoto race after leading 32 of 35 laps.

No surprise that Ricky Carmichael takes the Gold meal in the inaugural Moto X Racing event

Moto X Racing

Structured much like a small version of an AMA supercross race, the semi-retired Ricky Carmichael was the favorite to win the inaugural Moto X Racing event. Naturally he didn't disappoint. Ricky passed through his qualifying rounds like a hot knife through butter. Still en fuego from the first rounds, Carmichael not only walked away with the gold, he made each lap with style and grace. He's surely got the X Games fever and hopes to race in next year's Supermoto and Step Up events as well as the Racing.

Moto X Racing Final Standings
from The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA
on August 4, 2007
1. Ricky Carmichael Havana, FL
2. Grant Langston Clermont, FL
3. Kevin Windham Centreville, MS
4. Chad Reed Tampa, FL
5. Michael Byrne Newnan Newnan, GA
6. David Vuillemin Murrieta, CA

Moto X Freestyle

Adam Jones flies into the golden seat during the qualifying rounds of theMoto X Freestyle competition.

Moto X Freestyle Final Standings
from The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA
on August 4, 2007
1. Adam Jones Minden, NV 94.20
2. Nate Adams Glendale, AZ 91.20
3. Jeremy Stenberg Winchester, CA   91.60
4. Jeremy Lusk San Diego, CA    90.80
5. Mike Mason Carson City, NV 90.80
6. Mat Rebeaud  Payerne, Switzerland 90.40
7. Todd Potter Temecula, CA 89.00
8. Ronnie Faisst Mays Landing, NY 87.80
9. Dany Torres   Arahal, Spain 84.40
10. Taka Higashino Osaka, Japan 71.40

Team Paladin Rally's [18] Matt Iorio and fellow MO-ron Ole Holter flying high in the second X Games Rally Car Race.Rally Car Racing Super Special

Sunday was a "rest" day for the Fonz with no more two-wheeled freaks in game play. The four wheelers were in the spot light and our fellow MO-ron, Ole Holter of Team Paladin Rally was racing in the big show again this year in the Rally Car Racing Super Special. While the flying tomato, Shaun White was winning the Skateboard Vert Men’s competition , the rally car teams were warming up, rebuilding and topping off the four-wheeled vehicles.

Despite disqualifying himself by crossing into his opponents lane at the finish line in the semi-final, Travis took home the Bronze.

"While Shaun White was winning the Skateboard Vert Men’s competition , the rally car teams were warming up, rebuilding and topping off the four-wheeled vehicles."

Rally Car Racing Super Special Final Standings
from The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA
on August 5, 2007
1. Tanner Foust / Chrissie Beavis Steamboat, CO / San Diego, CA
2. Ken Block / Alessandro Gelosomino Encinitas, CA / Los Angeles, CA
3. Travis Pastrana / Christian Edstrom Annapolis, MD / New York, NY
4. Ramana Lagemann / Mark Williams Boston, MA / North Potomac, MD
5. Colin McRae / Carolyn Bosley Lanark, Scotland / Burlington, VT
6. Andy Pinker / Robbie Durant Perth, Australia / Oxford, England 
7. Paul Choiniere / Jeff Becker Shelburne, VT / Great Neck, NY
8. Andrew Comrie-Picard / Marc Goldfarb Alberta Canada / Atkinson, NH
9. Boris Said / John Buffum Carlsbad, CA / Colchester, VT  
10. Pat Moro / Mike Rossey Dublin, OH / Rochester, MI
11. Matt Iorio / Ole Holter Marlborough, NH / Long Beach, CA
12. Otis Dimiters / Alan Ockwell Great Neck, NY / Stouffville, Ontario, Canada

For closers, Monster Energy drink threw an after party in downtown Los Angeles at the Crash Mansion. De La Soul was there to perform and I was there to bring you the photos. The smells and inebriated action is for you to pick up next year... Check out the slideshow and thanks for coming.

Amazonian Monster women...Nothing more to say. Posdnuos of De La Soul braves the crowd to awaken the back rows during the Monster After Party held at the LA Crash Mansion

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