HUNDREDS turned out to watch some of the best BMX riders in the world defy gravity in Queenstown.
Pro riders from the US, UK, Australia and New Zealand entertained a crowd of about 1000 at Gorge Road Jump Park with an endless variety of tricks this afternoon (Saturday).
The annual jam received backing from sports sponsorship giants Red Bull this year and became the Red Bull Roast It.
Kiwi Paul Langlands won best rider and the $3000 top prize for his tireless performance in the 16-rider one-hour super final, throwing down scores of technical tricks in run after run.
Auckland rider George Bolter and tattooed US pro Brandon Docsh shared best line of the day.
Best trick went to an elated Jed Mildon for his double backflip. The Kiwi landed the sport’s first triple back flip last April.
Crowd favourite Mike Hucker Clark, sporting an impressive moustache, mullet and a permanent smile, was one of the day’s top riders.
Hucker Clark “It was awesome, way better than I could have ever imagined.
“Everyone ran really good, killed it and had a really good time and that’s all that matters.
“This place is unbelievable. The jumps are amazing, they flow perfect and you can go so high on them. You can do any tricks you want. They are perfectly built for all styles of riding.”
Queenstown’s biking fraternity, families and tourists turned out in force for the extreme sports event – at the impressive park built by local enthusiasts.
They watched as the riders landed everything from double backflips to front flips, 360 tailwhips, supermans, tabletops and toboggans.
Several riders knocked themselves unconscious as the stakes were raised for the grand final and big crashes became frequent, with the crowd cheering when they eventually made it to their feet supported by St Johns Ambulance staff.
Hucker Clarke signed for Red Bull two weeks ago at the X Games.
“It’s a dream come true, I never thought it would happen in a million years. Everything just sort of came together and here I am in New Zealand at the Red Bull Roast and it’s awesome.”