Event’s got him ‘stoked’
Sports fest draws the top athletes in extreme sports
For a professional BMX athlete whose job it is to do tricks on flat surfaces, the hill-less expanse of the Prairies is an open invitation.
“I’m pretty stoked,” says Benjamin Hudson, 21, a Chilean BMX rider in town this weekend for the Festival International Sports Extreme (FISE) Edmonton.
“It’s like a special thing with the flatland, I don’t know why, the floor is super good so the (performance) level is high,” he told Metro Friday.
Hudson has been a BMX flatland rider for eight years, which he describes as “riding bicycles in creative way on the flat land without any obstacles… creating your own moves, like dancing you can say.”
This is the second year Edmonton has hosted FISE, remaining the only North American city to do so.
FISE is a “world action sports festival” that features BMX competitions, mountain biking, skateboarding and scooter freestyle.
“I love Edmonton,” he said. “So last year I was here and the crowd was awesome, like such a good vibe and energy from the crowd to the rider so yeah, I love it.”
“We just make a great impression,” said Mayor Don Iveson.
“We work so hard in ensuring the athletes have a great, safe time and that all members of the public are looked after and enjoy themselves.”
He said having a festival of this magnitude is a great source of inspiration for local athletes.
“Even just to get people to say, ‘I’m going to dust off my bike and I’m going to ride down and see people do these sick jumps like 50 feet in the air,’ so that gets people moving, that gets people to perform,” he said.
He said last year’s festival drew 23,000 people and he hopes this year that number will increase significantly.
Benjamin Hudson is a 21 year old BMX Flatland rider from Chile who will be participating in FISE 2017.