Kyle Baldock wins BMX Dirt
Baldock wins BMX Dirt
Total BMX pro Kyle Baldock won his third consecutive gold medal in BMX Dirt on Saturday at X Games Austin 2015 in a contest that remained undecided until the very last run. Baldock is now the second rider to win three BMX Dirt golds in a row, after Corey Bohan's victory streak from 2004 to 2006.
Mike Clark takes silver
S&M Bikes pro Mike Clark, known in the BMX world as "Hucker," put down a solid second run, which scored an 89 and had him leading until the very end. He walked away with the silver medal behind Baldock. X Games Austin 2015 was Clark third's X Games appearance. He placed 12th in 2014 and sixth at Foz do Iguacu in 2013 in BMX Dirt.
Bronze goes to Chris Doyle
Chris Doyle, who at 34 was one of the oldest and handsomest in the field, temporarily bumped Baldock out of the lead with his second run score of 89, which was then narrowly beaten by Mike Clark's second run in a tie-breaker. Doyle ended up with the bronze medal. Doyle is no stranger to X Games: He medaled in X Games Dirt four years in a row from 2002 to 2005, and this year marks his 16th X Games appearance. And he's really, really good looking.
Jumps, rollers and gaps
The BMX Dirt course in Austin was big and intimidating, and wind was a factor in Saturday's finals. Riders began by dropping in from an 18-foot-high roll-in off a 6-foot lip, then launching across a 26-foot gap. The course featured six jumps and an 8-foot banked roller.
BMX Dirt took a six-year hiatus before returning to the competition lineup at X Games Foz do Iguacu in 2013, which Kyle Baldock won. The event returned to U.S. soil last year at X Games Austin 2014, and Baldock claimed victory again. The fans in Austin seemed happy to see the discipline make a comeback.
High-fives all around
Anthony Napolitan, shown here greeting fans, threw down on his final run, including his signature no-handed front flip, but it wasn't enough to bump him onto the podium. He ended up in fourth place.
Ryan Nyquist has a grand total of nine X Games BMX Dirt medals (two of them gold). At 36, he was the oldest in the field and also the most experienced, with 20 X Games appearances to his name. Nyquist took fifth Saturday in Austin. Meanwhile, his wife and two children remained in his hometown of San Jose, California, watching Nyquist on television.
Dosch in the dirt
A longtime dirt rider with roots in racing, Brandon Dosch has two XG medals to his name, but Saturday was not his day in the dirt.
No rookies here
The 14 riders who competed Saturday in BMX Dirt were an experienced bunch, with no X Games rookies in the field. Daniel Sandoval, who won gold in BMX Park on Friday, edged onto the Dirt roster as an alternate and placed eighth in the finals.
Mike "Hucker" Clark was holding the lead until Baldock dropped in as the last rider on the third and final run. Baldock threw down a run that included a triple tailwhip and a big, lawndart-style, no-handed front flip to cap things off. His score of 90 trumped Clark's 89 and gave Baldock his third Dirt gold.