Veteran Mike Brown Earns X Games Endurocross Win
Endurocross is a unique event for X Games. This dirt bike racing combines the worlds of Supercross, trials competition and enduro racing to create an extreme form of off-road racing where even the best in the world will stumble at times. It’s also unique because it’s one of the few events that earns points during X Games competition for its independent ongoing series.
Regardless of Endurocross Championship battles, fans at Staples Center in Los Angeles were on the edge of their seats for the intense evening of racing. After racers tackled the course – which is strewn with logs, rock gardens, water pools and other challenging obstacles – to qualify or get through to the final via the last-chance qualifier, the 10-person final round was set to conclude this year’s X Games. Veteran Mike Brown earned the victory this year after finishing last year behind Taddy Blazusiak at last year’s race.
"To come back from to the silver to the gold is great. That was my goal this year," Brown said. "All day long I was riding good and I had good times, and I knew if I got a good start I help me win the gold."
Finishing in second place was Cody Webb, an accomplished trials and off-road racer who bettered his 2011 finish of eighth place.
"I'm pumped with getting a good start because without it, I wouldn't be here. I feel I rode pretty flawlessly, and I'm more than happy with my end results," Webb said.
Earning the final podium spot was British Columbia's Cory Graffunder who earned the bronze medal in his first year at X Games after missing last year’s race with an injury.
"Last year I was scheduled to race, and I broke my wrist right before and it was the biggest disappointment of my life, and to follow it up with the bronze the next year is the biggest achievement of my life," Graffunder said.
Just missing the podium was last year’s winner Blazisuak, who worked his way through the pack after getting tangled in an early pileup at the start of the race.
In the Women’s Endurcross race, it was Maria Forsberg who earned the victory to defend her gold medal at last year’s Games.
“This race was way harder this year,” she said. “The girls are faster, more consistent and have gone home and done their homework which made for a good race. I’m pumped to be here.”
Forsberg was able to capitalize after rookie Louise Forsley led much of the race but struggled with a few obstacles that opened the door for the consistent Forsberg to earn the win.
“This is my first year at X Games, and I’m really stoked on getting more exposure out of this,” said Forsley, who became an early crowd favorite after pointing to a sticker on her helmet that suggested Red Bull should sponsor her. “I’ve been training really hard and am happy with my end results.”
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