The best Freestyle Motocross athletes from NIGHT of the JUMPs will take over Zurich next Saturday night for the very first time in its history. The Hallenstadion will provide the playground for the longest running FMX sports series in the world. Thus, the FMX World Championship moves from Basel to Zurich in front of an all new crowd for the 5th stop of the world tour.
The rider field for the Swiss Grand Prix presents some of the best action sports athletes in the world. The event will host FIM World Champions, FIM European Champions, X Games Winner, Nitro World Games winner and winner of the Red Bull X-Fighters series. Maikel Melero, for example, is the five-time FIM World Champion who is looking for his first win of the season. Taking flight will also the German FMX Wunderkind, Luc Ackermann. The 21-year-old who is the reigning European Champion and runner-up World Champion from 2018, will be looking to dethrone Maikel Melero in 2019 with tricks like his Double Backflip and Surfer Tsunami Flip. With a clean streak of championship round wins in 2019, Luc is well on his way to the FIM World Championship title.
The 4th placegetter of the 2018 World Championship battle and winner of Nitro World Games in 2018, Pat Bowden is looking for his first NIGHT of the JUMPs win of the season. The Australian has some of the best style on offer and is currently sitting in third position in the World Championship ranking. If he wants to beat Luc and Maikel, he will need to bring something extra on the Quarter Pipe, Double Flip or his Ruler Flip which he has previously landed.
The Zurich crowd will have more than one reason to cheer on their home-town hero, Mat Rebeaud. The Swiss Maestro won the very first FIM Freestyle MX World Championship in 2006, has a handful of X Games medals, including the Gold Medal, and also a Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour Champion. He will also celebrate his return to the World Championship with his own Premiere – to become the first rider in the world to compete in the official FIM FMX World Championships with an Electric Motorcycle at NIGHT of the JUMPs in Zurich.
After the horror crash from the 2010 World Champion and five-time runner-up World Champion, Libor Podmol in Munich, it will be up to the younger brother Filip Podmol and fellow compatriot Petr Pilat to represent the Czech Republic in Zurich. Pilat, European Champion in 2015, will return with his incredible array of backflip combos under the Hallenstadion roof. Filip, the younger brother of Libor, showed in Munich an incredible variety of tricks with the California Roll, Surfer Indy to Indy Flip and a flat 360 which could be enough to make it to the finals in Zurich.
With Kai Haase and Hannes Ackermann, the three Germans will be looking to dominate in Switzerland. Hannes, the older brother of Luc, recently celebrated his incredible comeback in Munich with his first ever Front Flip in competition which landed him in the final – at the same location where 3 years earlier, he suffered a terrible crash on a Volt and suffered a broken back. Kai has recently made headlines with his front flip over a scissor-lift. He won’t be showing that in Zurich, but his other tricks can potentially get him in the finals after he succeeded for the first time in 2018 at NIGHT of the JUMPs in China.
Brice Izzo will represent France as the elder statesman at NIGHT of the JUMPs and 2010 Vice World Champion. But all eyes will be on fellow Frenchman, Jeremy Rouanet who has new tricks up his sleeve to unleash at NIGHT of the JUMPs for the first time. Rouanet who is the inventor and only rider to land “The Roulette” body varial, has only tasted the World Championship stage a couple of times, but with his new trick – the Front Flair, he hopes with a full bag of tricks he will reach the final and even a podium finish. The new Front Flair trick is only possible on an innovation of the Quarter Pipe, which will make its debut at NIGHT of the JUMPs in Zurich.
The night of action in Zurich won’t be the only thing on the crowd’s mind, with the temperatures rising in the Best Whip Competition where up to 8 riders will turn their bikes up, down and inside out simultaneously in the air. To get more synchronised, 6 riders will compete in the Synchro contest with two riders per team to see who can perform the best tricks in sync.
With more than 300 NIGHT of the JUMPs events performed around the world in front of more than 3 million enthusiastic fans since its inception in 2001, the longest running Freestyle Motocross sport series in the world has since become a global tour which is hosted on four continents around the world.
In Switzerland, NIGHT of the JUMPs has a long tradition of FMX competition. For 12 years, NIGHT of the JUMPs have unleashed the biggest tricks under the roof of the St. Jakobshalle in Basel, in front of 120,000 fans. And previously NIGHT of the JUMPs was in the federal city of Bern. In 2019, the best Freestyle MX athletes will arrive in Zurich for the first time and with bigger tricks than has ever been seen before at NIGHT of the JUMPs.
NIGHT of the JUMPs / FIM Freestyle MX World Championship
25th May 2019
Zurich / Switzerland
Field of riders:
Luc Ackermann (GER)
Maikel Melero (ESP)
Pat Bowden (AUS)
Mat Rebeaud (SUI)
Brice Izzo (FRA)
Petr Pilat (CZE)
Filip Podmol (CZE)
Kai Haase (GER)
Hannes Ackermann (GER)
Jeremy Rouanet (FRA)