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X Games 2024: BMX, skate and sunshine

Fiona Aulenta
Olympian and 11 time X Games medalist, Tom Schaar completed an inverted, backside 540 called a McTwist, allowing him to secure his gold medal for the men’s skateboard vert final, with a final score of 92.00.

It’s refreshing to skate in X Games we’re all homies out there we’re all having a good time skating with each other.”

— Nyjah Houston

As the sunny skies and loud cheering erupt from the stands, it is clear that summer has begun in Ventura, Calif., at the 2024 X Games. This competition was three full days of world-renowned park skaters, street skaters, bicycle motocross (BMX) dirt and motorcross riders displaying their skills to both fans and judges in an attempt to win the X Games Ventura gold medal in each event. Besides the 17 judged events happening in the Ventura Fairgrounds, X Games had much more to offer throughout the days, such as live music, children’s BMX and skate parks, delicious food and beautiful drone shows. 

The Ventura fairgrounds had six courses for skating, BMX and motorcross, along with VIP lounges and a stage where various artists performed during the three days. The space had much to offer for people of all ages because of the different activities and food that could be found around every corner. 

Day 1:

Japanese skateboarder Moto Shibata warming up for the men’s skateboard vert final where he would eventually place second, earning him as silver metal, with a final score of 89.66 (Fiona Aulenta)

Day one on Friday, June 28, 2024, started with bright blue skies and the smell of the ocean nearby. The day began with elimination rounds of the women’s and men’s park and street competitions, allowing 16 skaters to move on to the finals from each competition. Towards the middle of the day, the Women’s BMX Park Finals were held on the SONIC Park Course, where 23-year-old Hannah Roberts took gold with a top run score of 90.00 out of her three runs.

Later in the afternoon, events such as Cinnamon Toast Crunch BMX Dirt Elimination and the Men’s Skateboard Vert Finals took place. In the Men’s Skateboard Vert Final, 10 contestants compete on a vert ramp, which is a form of half-pipe used in extreme sports such as vert skateboarding. These contestants fought for gold, but only one prevailed: 11-time X Games medalist, Tom Schaar with a final score of 92.00.

When asked about his win, Schaar said, “I’m honestly more surprised than anything I haven’t skated Vert in a while. I thought skated better than I did but I’ll I don’t know, I’m happy I made a run and it worked out.”

Well, Tom Shcaar was not at the last vert event … and so I’m excited to see him on the vert ramp because he has what it takes to win the whole thing.”

— Tony Hawk

As the night came to a close, Samsung Galaxy BMX Street Final and Moto X Best Whip finished out the competitions for the night with Kevin Peraza taking gold in the BMX street final and Patrick Evans winning his first X Games gold medal. After the events concluded for the night, rapper Wiz Kalifa gave an outstanding performance on stage to the large crowds while a drone show played overhead.



Day 2:

On Saturday, June 29, 2024, day two opened with the Monster Energy Women’s Skateboard Street Final, where Miyu Ito took gold. The Men’s Skateboard Park Final on the SONIC Park Course occurred at the same time when Keegan Palmer got ahead to gold with a final score of 93.00. Later in the day, Men’s and Women’s Monster Energy Skateboard Street Best Trick was held where athletes displayed their best skills on the course.

The Monster Energy Women’s Skateboard Street Final allowed female skaters a chance to display there skills on the Monster Energy Street Course. Yumeka Oda (far right) took bronze with a final score of
84.00, Liz Akama (far left) won silver with a final score of 85.66 and Miyu Ito (middle) taking gold with a final score of 88.66. (Fiona Aulenta)

As the day progressed, so did the intensity. BMX had their first final event for the Cinnamon Toast Crunch BMX Dirt Final, where riders displayed skills such as a double front flip and 360 bar spin. In elimination for BMX dirt, Brady Baker became the first rookie to place first for eliminations and take gold in the final since 1997.  As events continued, most thought that it would continue to be an exciting day of competition, until history was made

The Pacifico Women’s Skateboard Vert Best Trick competition was like any other trick competition, with contestants attempting to earn the highest score on a singular trick for a chance at gold, but who would have guessed that the winner would be the youngest gold medalist in X Games history. Female Australian skater, Mia Kretzer, became the youngest gold medalist at age nine. 

When asked if Kretzer had any advice for young women attempting to skate, she said, “Don’t give up, follow your dreams and have fun.”

The day concluded with the Men’s BMX Park Final on the SONIC Park Course with Marcus Christopher taking gold with a final score of 95.66 and Monster Energy Moto X Best Trick where riders attempt difficult and creative tricks, while also landing safely. Jackson Strong ended victorious with gold with a score of 97.66. The events came to a close and crowds of people flocked to the stage to watch two house music performers, Devault and Kaskade, put on an incredible show to end the night.

Day 3:

Day three was held on Sunday, June 30, 2024, and had a promising event schedule. The day started with the Women’s Skateboard Park Final on the SONIC Park Course as the record-breaking 14-year-old Arisa Trew of Australia became the first women’s skateboarder to land a 900 and had high hopes of landing one during her vert competition later in the day. She took home gold in the Women’s Skateboard Park Final and the Women’s Skateboard Vert Final but was not able to complete a 900.

29-year-old Jose Torres from Argentina completing a barspin-to-barspin in air, securing him the bronze medal in the Men’s BMX Park on the SONIC Park Course. (Fiona Aulenta)

When asked about her performance during the Pacifico Women’s Skateboard Vert Best Trick the day prior, Trew commented, “I was really like disappointed at myself about how I did in the best trick because I obviously wanted to land the 900 because it’s a female has never done it in competition but it’s okay because I rather like do better in the park in the vert like I’m just going to focus on that and move on from the best trick.”

Some of the final bigger events that happened in the middle of the day were Dave Mirra BMX Park Best Trick on the SONIC Park Course and Monster Energy Men’s Skateboard Street Final. The Dave Mirra BMX Park Best Trick is an event in honor of Dave Mirra’s passing in 2016.  Mirra was an American BMX rider and set the record for most medals in BMX Freestyle at the X Games. Kevin Peraza took home gold in this event for the second year in a row. In the Monster Energy Men’s Skateboard Street Final, Nyjah Huston won gold with a score of 95.00 making this his 15th X Games gold medal.

Gustavo Oliveira on his first set of second run of eliminations of the Cinnamon Toast Crunch BMX dirt competition. Here he is completing a double backflip and his overall placement was 12th overall. (Fiona Aulenta)

As day three came to a close, the final events were the Samsung Galaxy Moto X QuarterPipe High Air and the Cinnamon Toast Crunch BMX Dirt Best Trick. In the Moto X QuarterPipe High Air, riders compete to achieve the highest height they can go on the quarter pipe while remaining on the bike. Corey Creed took gold with a final height of 53 feet and 7 inches. In the BMX Dirt Best Trick, riders are judged on a singular trick, Ryan Williams won gold for his best BMX Dirt trick.

Those final events wrapped up X Games 2024 in Ventura, and gave the city a chance to display the beauty and talent that it has to offer. It is still up for debate whether or not X Games will return to Ventura next year. The one certain thing is that Ventura hasn’t lost its stoke yet and will continue to do events like this in the future.

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About the Contributor
Fiona Aulenta
Fiona Aulenta, Videographer
“I make bad decisions frequently. They're fun.” - SZA

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