Garrett Reynolds six-peats in BMX Street
BARCELONA, Spain -- The undisputed king of X Games BMX Street held on to his crown Sunday in Barcelona as Garrett Reynolds fended off Bruno Hoffmann and Stevie Churchill to claim his sixth consecutive gold medal. Reynolds has dominated the event since its debut in 2008.
"I was just trying to concentrate and just remember what I wanted to do because it's real easy to get lost out there," Reynolds said. "Everyone being here, all my friends supporting everything got me hyped to ride."
The course, which also hosted the Street League Skateboarding final on Saturday, was inspired by Barcelona's famed plazas and suited Reynolds well. He made quick work of its many features, rolling in with highly technical combos like a barspin to backward crooked grind on the flat bar to hop over into the bank to start his run, then blasting bigger tricks like a rail ride to tailwhip, nollie barspin 180 down the stairs, and barspin to icepick down the rail, to barspin out. He posted scores of 41 out of 50 in each of his two best runs for a combined score of 82, which score held up for the gold medal -- a full four points ahead of silver medalist Hoffmann.
Reynolds' win puts him in the elite X Games six-peat club, which also includes snowboarder Shaun White, SnoCross racer Tucker Hibbert and the Skateboard Vert Doubles team of Tony Hawk and Andy Macdonald. Only one athlete has outdone them: BMX Vert competitor Jamie Bestwick won his record-setting setting seventh gold medal last month in Brazil and grabbed gold again on Friday in Barcelona for an unprecedented eighth consecutive win.
Hoffmann posted the single highest run score of the day -- 43.00 in the best-of two runs format -- thanks to half Cab and full Cab combinations linked together with technical manual lines and big tricks like a feeble grind to hard 180 out on the Hubba ledge. On his final run he landed a nose wheelie to 180 down the Hubba ledge, helping to make him the first non-American rider to win a medal in BMX Street. Stevie Churchill was just one point behind him in bronze position.
Chad Kerley, the X Games Los Angeles 2012 silver medalist, was the top qualifier on Sunday and posed the biggest threat to Reynolds coming into finals but struggled to put complete runs together and finished in fourth place, more than 10 points behind Churchill.
"I look up to all these guys," Reynolds said of his competitors. "The dudes who were riding this are like my favorite riders."