X Games

Last updated

X Games
X Games logo.svg
Sport Extreme sports
Founded1995
Inaugural season Extreme Games
TV partner(s) ESPN
ESPN2
ESPN3 (live stream)
ABC
Eurosport
ESPN Latin America
ESPN Brasil
Trans7
CTV
TSN
RDS
Official website XGames.com

The X Games is an annual extreme sports event hosted, produced, and broadcast by ESPN. Coverage is also shown on ESPN's sister network, ABC. The inaugural X Games were held during the summer of 1995 in Newport, Rhode Island. Participants compete to win bronze, silver, and gold medals, as well as prize money.

Contents

The competition often features new tricks such as Tony Hawk's 900 in skateboarding, Travis Pastrana's double backflip in freestyle motocross, Heath Frisby's first ever snowmobile front flip in Snowmobile Best Trick, and Torstein Horgmo's first landed triple cork in a snowboard competition. Concurrent with competition is the "X Fest" sports and music festival, which offers live music, athlete autograph sessions, and interactive elements.

The X Games gained media exposure due to their big name sponsors, top-tier athletes, and consistent fan attendance. As the Journal of Sport Management (2006) explains, Generation X and Generation Y are the two demographics most highly valued by marketers. This creates a broad approach on marketing towards that certain demographic, which is why the X Games marketing and economic outlook is so "out of the box". According to a 2008 report by ESPN, in 1997, the Winter X Games inaugural year, 38,000 spectators attended the four-day event. In 1998, the attendance dropped to 25,000 spectators. But just two years later, a record attendance of 83,500 people attended the Winter X Games' East Coast debut. The X Games and Winter X Games continue to grow with the popularity of action sports and the athletes who compete in them.

As part of the X Games, there have been performances by various rock bands over the years, as well as a DJ being on-site at all events. The X Games have made it a point since its founding to stage an eco-friendly event. Such measures include using biodiesel fuel in their vehicles and organizing recycling campaigns. [1]

The X Games has never carried out drug tests on competitors, which has been criticized by the World Anti-Doping Agency director general David Howman and the International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach. [2] [3] [4]

Winter X Games

Variation of X Games logo, used for Winter X Games Winter X Games logo.svg
Variation of X Games logo, used for Winter X Games

The Winter X Games VIII in 2002 was the first time an X Games event was televised live and also had coverage by ESPN's flagship news program, SportsCenter . Viewership across the three networks that carried coverage of the event – ABC Sports, ESPN, and ESPN2  – exceeded 2001's household average by 30% according to Nielsen Media Research. The event also reached record highs in several demographic categories. To accommodate the first-time live coverage, nighttime competitions were added, resulting in record attendance for the Aspen/Snowmass venue in Colorado.

The 2002 Winter X Games was a huge year for ESPN and the X Games. It was the first year that the games were held in Aspen at Buttermilk Mountain. The Games continued to add new events including the ski slopestyle event, ski superpipe event, snowboarding, skateboarding etc. The most memorable incident of the 2002 Games was when the entire 2002 U.S. Olympic freestyle snowboarding team showed up to compete in the Winter X snowboard superpipe event, just weeks before the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. Also in 2002, ESPN announced the establishment of the X Games Global Championship. The Global Championship featured two distinct venues hosting competitions in summer and winter action sports simultaneously. It consisted of six teams of the world's top athletes, grouped together by their region of origin, to compete in the four-day event. The winter sports were held in Whistler Blackcomb Resort in British Columbia, and the events included snowboarding and skiing.

The Winter X Games are held in January or February (usually in January) and the Summer X Games are usually held in August, both in the United States. The location of the Winter X Games is in Aspen, Colorado, through 2019, while the location for the Summer X Games has been in Los Angeles, changing to Austin, Texas, in June 2014. The X Games also has international competitions and demos around the world that are held at varying times throughout the year. The games are shown live on television.

The Winter X Games are, as described by ESPN (2008), a competition compiled of the greatest winter action sport athletes from around the world competing on an annual basis. The competition has day and evening events including skiing, snowboarding and snowmobiling. The first Winter X Games took place at Mountain Resort in Big Bear Lake, California, in 1997. The following two years, the Games were held at Crested Butte Mountain Resort in Colorado. The two years following that, the Games were held in Mount Snow, Vermont. Since 2002, the Winter X Games have been held at Aspen's Buttermilk Mountain and will continue to be until 2024, according to ESPN.

During 2015's Winter X Games, ESPN used camera drones to capture aerial views of the athlete's runs. This was a first for ESPN. [5]

Global expansion

X Games Asia have been held annually since 1998.

In May 2003, the X Games held the Global Championships, a special event where five continents competed in 11 disciplines. The event was held in two locations: the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, and Whistler, British Columbia. [6] [7] The final team results, in order, were the United States, Europe, Australia, Asia, and South America.

In May 2011, ESPN held a bid to select three host cities in addition to Los Angeles, Aspen, and Tignes, France, to form a six-event calendar for the next three years beginning in 2013. [8] In May 2012, the selected cities were announced: Barcelona, Spain; Munich, Germany; and Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil. [9] The two European cities have hosted the Summer Olympic Games in the past, whereas Brazil has provided several X Games competitors. [10] Despite previous plans for a three-year run, ESPN opted to cancel the global expansion after 2013. [11] [12] Since 2010, Winter X Games Europe have been held in Tignes. In 2018, the X Games also had an event in Sydney, Australia in late October.

Events

Current Summer

Current Winter

Past Summer

Past Winter

History

Brian Deegan at X Games 17 in Los Angeles competing in the Moto X Step Up event. Brian Deegan jumping at X Games 17 in Los Angeles.jpg
Brian Deegan at X Games 17 in Los Angeles competing in the Moto X Step Up event.

Summarized from ESPN.com [13]

Summer X Games

Winter X Games

Venues

Year Summer Winter Asia Europe (Summer) Europe (Winter) Latin AmericaOceania
1995 Flag of the United States.svg Newport, Rhode Island Flag of the United States.svg Stowe, Vermont
1996 Flag of the United States.svg Newport, Rhode Island Flag of the United States.svg Stowe, Vermont
1997 Flag of the United States.svg San Diego, California Flag of the United States.svg Big Bear Lake, California
1998 Flag of the United States.svg San Diego, California Flag of the United States.svg Crested Butte, Colorado Flag of Thailand.svg Phuket
1999 Flag of the United States.svg San Francisco, California Flag of the United States.svg Crested Butte, Colorado Flag of Thailand.svg Phuket
2000 Flag of the United States.svg San Francisco, California Flag of the United States.svg Mount Snow, Vermont Flag of Thailand.svg Phuket
2001 Flag of the United States.svg Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Flag of the United States.svg Mount Snow, Vermont Flag of Thailand.svg Phuket
2002 Flag of the United States.svg Philadelphia Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of Malaysia.svg Kuala Lumpur
2003 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of Malaysia.svg Kuala Lumpur
2004 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of Malaysia.svg Kuala Lumpur
2005 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of South Korea.svg Seoul
2006 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of Malaysia.svg Kuala Lumpur
2007 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai Flag of Mexico.svg Mexico City
2008 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai Flag of Mexico.svg Mexico City
2009 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai
2010 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai Flag of France.svg Tignes
2011 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai Flag of France.svg Tignes
2012 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai Flag of France.svg Tignes
2013 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai Flag of Spain.svg Barcelona
Flag of Germany.svg Munich
Flag of France.svg Tignes Flag of Brazil.svg Foz do Iguaçu
2014 Flag of the United States.svg Austin, Texas Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai
2015 Flag of the United States.svg Austin Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai
2016 Flag of the United States.svg Austin Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of Norway.svg Oslo [22]
2017 Flag of the United States.svg Minneapolis Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of Norway.svg Hafjell [23]
2018 Flag of the United States.svg Minneapolis Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of Norway.svg Oslo [24] Flag of Australia.svg Sydney
2019 Flag of the United States.svg Minneapolis Flag of the United States.svg Aspen Flag of Norway.svg Oslo
2020 Flag of the United States.svg Minneapolis

References

  1. Coryell, Grace. "ESPN's working hard to keep the Winter X Games green". ESPN . Retrieved February 9, 2016.
  2. WADA Statement on X Games in Norway – World Anti-Doping Agency, February 22, 2016
  3. ESPN pushing ahead with X Games Oslo despite criticism of drug-testing policy – Ben Fischer, Sports Business Daily, February 22, 2016
  4. Bach Blasts X Games Oslo for No Drug Testing – Around the Ring, February 21, 2016
  5. Edgar Alvarez. "ESPN is bringing camera drones to the X Games". Engadget. AOL. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  6. "Teams Unveiled For X Games Global Championship". Ride BMX. April 1, 2003. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  7. "ESPN To Stage X Games Global Championship". TransWorld SNOWboarding. May 28, 2002. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  8. ESPN announces bid process for the X Games and Winter X Games Archived April 30, 2012, at the Wayback Machine  – ESPN, May 17, 2011
  9. Devon O'Neil, X Games expands globally, Xgames.com, May 1, 2012
  10. Katie Moses-Swope. "Save the Date: Announcement of Three New Cities to Join X Games Global Expansion – ESPN MediaZone". ESPN MediaZone. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  11. Danny Chi. "X GAMES ANNOUNCEMENT – ESPN MediaZone". ESPN MediaZone. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  12. "ESPN to drop International X Games competitions, cut jobs". Reuters. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  13. "About International X Games". Archived from the original on 2007. Retrieved 2010-04-03.
  14. "EXPN.com – Summer X Games 2001 – 2000 Skateboarding Results". Archived from the original on May 22, 2001. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  15. "X Games moves to downtown Los Angeles, July 29-Aug. 1, 2010". ESPN.com. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  16. "X Games and action sports videos, photos, athletes, events, original series, news and more". X Games. Archived from the original on November 6, 2012. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  17. "Britains Doran Leaps To X Games Gold Medal". The Checkered Flag. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  18. Bob Burnquist Lands Lien Air 720 in Big Air. YouTube. April 18, 2013. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  19. L'Heureux, David (June 30, 2013). "Brett Rheeder wins Mountain Bike Slopestyle". X Games. ESPN.
  20. "X Games Aspen – Henrik Harlaut wins Ski Big Air final". X Games. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  21. "Snowmobiler Moore dies week after crash in Winter X Games". cbssports.com. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
  22. "X Games is coming to Oslo in February 2016". X Games. September 1, 2015. Retrieved January 1, 2016.
  23. "X Games in Hafjell March 8th–11th 2017". Hafjell.no. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
  24. "X Games Norway returns for 2018". X Games. January 4, 2018. Retrieved March 4, 2018.