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The Comeback « All Terrain Research – Custom Off-Road Products
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The Comeback

Published on August th, 2010

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x_games_16_4383

Eight days after walking out of the ICU with my own injuries, I watched as Peris Rosen painfully under rotated a front flip at X Games 16.  The same night I watched Cameron Sinclair win Best Trick gold by stomping a perfect double backflip, the same trick that nearly ended his life less than a year ago.  Rosen would return to X Games with only minor injuries but all of this begs the question;  why?

Why do we do what we do?  It’s certainly not smart.  Willingly lofting oneself up to thirty feet in the air at distances greater than 70 ft certainly isn’t conducive to long life and good health.

It’s not a career.  So few people make a living in this sport and even the top riders that seem to be raking it in have a few years in the spotlight then it’s gone.  And with the spotlight go the high dollar endorsements shoe contracts and the like.  A select few make the smart move of investing in a product or clothing line or even just manage to put some away for a rainy day, but even the top riders in the world will tell you they know it won’t last forever.

Forget about us, there is sometimes an even greater strain placed on our family members.  Peris Rosen’s family were among the first on the dirt at X games after he crashed.  I watched as his mother had to be held back while paramedics tended to him.  Why do we put our family through that?

Cam Sinclair’s fiancé was by his side after his horrific crash and each step after that as he relearned how to walk.  After seven days in a doctor induced coma, Sinclair finally came to but family shared he was never the same until he got back on his dirt bike.

Why do we put ourselves and our family through this madness?  Cam Sinclair showed us why at X Games 16 when he performed the double backflip in front of a packed house and a TV audience of millions.  He completed the same trick that almost killed him a year before on the biggest stage in the world.  It wasn’t the money, the fame or the lure of a Gold medal.  It was about a guy on his dirtbike doing the unthinkable.  That’s the lure of this sport for everyone that rides freestyle.  That’s what fuels us to continue pushing when sanity says don’t.

Somewhere in our life we see somebody on a bike or a quad doing what they do and something deep inside of us says, “You want that.” You don’t know how or what it will take to get there, but all you know is you want that and you won’t be satisfied until you get it.  By that point there’s no turning back.  You’ve been bitten and you’ll stop at nothing to get back on the bike.  People think we’re crazy.  “You’ve cheated death, you’ve made it to the top, why not quit while the going’s good?”

This sport wasn’t made by people who rose to the top only to quit while ahead.  Freestyle motocross is about progression.  The guy on top immediately goes back to work on raising the bar.  That’s how this sport evolved from a bunch of guys riding in the hills of southern California to taking over downtown Los Angeles for a week when X Games is in town.

Progression.  Its why Mike Metzger, two months after breaking his femur (for the fourth time), finds himself back on a bike making preparations for X games Speed and Style.  It’s why JR Hinds of the Bomb Squad, after under rotating a back flip and nearly losing his life, is riding a show in France as I write this.  It’s why Ronnie Faisst tried and failed three times before sticking the 360 as the 5th person in X Games history to do so.  Much to the dismay of his family Peris Rosen will probably be back at X next year in hopes of conquering the trick that could have cost him his life this year.

And me?  Every time I see guys ride it pains me to sit and watch because I’m still healing.  After seeing the damage to my quad and what’s left of my helmet, I probably shouldn’t’ be alive.  God had his hand on me that day and I’m eternally thankful for that.  Yet all it takes is the sound of an engine, the smell of race gas or even a song on the radio and I’m ready to ride.

People don’t understand us and if you asked why, we can’t give a definitive answer. It’s just the way it is.

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