It’s been 20 years since the first X Games took place in Rhode Island and, after all this time, the games are still growing and evolving.
The X Games have even found a way to make the old new again in the form of a revitalized NASCAR legend: Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace will compete in off-road truck racing.
“I honestly miss driving a car a little bit,” the 58-year-old told The Associated Press. “ESPN brought up this possibility and I thought, ‘Why not? Let’s go knock the cobwebs off and try this.’ I know that I stopped driving too early. I think I could have gone another three years.
“But at that point, I was really getting burned out on all the travel. I was irritable. I got the opportunity to work for ESPN and I said to myself, ‘If I don’t do this, someone else will.’ So that’s the path I took. I still struggle with not racing, not a whole lot, but a little, and this was a good opportunity to go have some fun.”
While Wallace is the embodiment of the phrase “what’s old is new again,” has anyone ever heard the phrase “what’s young is old again”? That could apply to 15-year-old Tom Schaar, reigning Big Air champion and the first skater to land a 1080. Just a high school sophomore, he’s already an X Games legend—and a humble one at that: “I’m not looking to win again or anything like that, but more importantly, have fun. I think I got kind of lucky last year.”
Since we’re just making up phrases, could “what’s old is old but still the best again” apply to BMX rider Jamie Bestwick? He’s as dominant an athlete as you’ll find in any sport and he’s gunning for his 10th straight gold.
“The very first X Games I went to was a very basic affair,” Bestwick said. “So it’s gone from this very basic contest to what it is now in Austin, Texas, and it is just a mass of motorbikes, and cars, and BMX, and skateboards. Metallica is playing this year, you know, that right there just shows you the magnitude of how big the X Games have become. When you kind of compare it to its very humble beginnings, everybody has to start somewhere, but it’s been an amazing ride. That’s been a ride in itself that a lot of people have been really stoked that they got to come along for that.”
So, at this year’s X Games the old is new again, the new is old again, and the old just keeps getting better.
X GAMES SCHEDULE
(All times eastern)
Thursday, June 4
8:30pm — Harley-Davidson Flat-Track Racing Round One/LCQ/Final; Moto X Step Up Final (Downtown) (ESPN/WatchESPN)
Friday, June 5
12:30pm — BMX Vert Final (ESPN3)
1:30pm — Skateboard Vert Final (ESPN3)
3pm — Toyota BMX Park Round One/Final (ESPN3)
7pm — Moto X Enduro X Men’s & Women’s Round One/LCQ/Final; America’s Navy Skateboard Big Air Round One/Final (ESPN/WatchESPN)
Saturday, June 6
12pm — Toyota Skateboard Park Round One/Final (ESPN/WatchESPN)
2pm — RallyCar Racing Presented by Bud Light Round One/LCQ/Final; Women’s Skateboard Street Round One/Final; BMX Dirt Round One/Final (ESPN3)
8pm — Moto X Speed & Style Qtrs/Semis/Final; GoPro BMX Big Air Final (ESPN/WatchESPN)
Sunday, June 7
12pm — Skateboard/BMX Big Air Doubles Final (ESPN/WatchESPN)
2pm — Off-Road Truck Racing Round One/LCQ/Final; Monster Energy Men’s Skateboard Street Round One/Final; Moto X Best Whip Final; Toyota Moto X QuarterPipe Final (ESPN3)
And here are a few links to get you a little more primed for the action.
“Flat-track may be new to X Games, but it’s one of the world’s oldest motorcycle racing disciplines. And on the evening of June 4, Harley-Davidson Flat-Track Racing will debut at — and kick off — X Games Austin 2015.”
“The inaugural Moto X QuarterPipe competition will debut on Sunday, June 7, on the final day of X Games Austin 2015.”
“NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Rusty Wallace is trying his hand at a new sport: off-road truck racing. And he’s invited to compete at X Games Austin 2015.”
“Gold medal Enduro X racer Maria Forsberg retired from racing endurocross briefly after the birth of her first child, but just couldn’t quit motorcycles. Now she’s back for X Games Austin 2015.”
“Veteran Moto X competitor Jeremy Stenberg is set to compete in Moto X Best Whip and Stadium Super Trucks at X Games Austin 2015.”
“Cory and Shayna Texter are a brother and sister combination scheduled to compete in Harley-Davidson Flat-Track racing at X Games Austin 2015.”
“X Games BMX gold medalist Morgan Wade visits Austin to see how far he can get with his X Games gold medal.”