SANTA MONICA, CALIF. (April 1, 2006) Mat Rebeaud of Switzerland adds his name to a distinguished list of motoreros as he claimed victory at Red Bull X-Fighters in Mexico City on March 31, 2006.
The 23-year-old from Payerne in Switzerland pulled out his
entire bag of tricks at the international freestyle motocross
competition and experienced "the most beautiful day of my (his) life"
winning his first big international competition.
However this was a hard won battle, fitting for the world's largest
A sold-out crowd of 42,000 at the Monumental Plaza de Toros was
ready with handkerchiefs and passion as the velvet night
made a perfect backdrop for the dramatic competition. As early as
the first round, top favorite Travis Pastrana and
surprise Norwegian challenger Andre Villa came out hard.
Meanwhile Rebeaud's rise to glory began slowly
in fifth place after the
first round where he managed a meager 70 points.
The top five riders advanced to the semi-finals where the three
places for the final were determined -- one of which,
for Andre Villa, seemed be secured. But a fall for Villa and a
disappointing second round for Spaniard Dani Torres ended their nights
The final round began with a breathtaking run by last year's winner,
Ronnie Renner, and then topped by Rebeaud, who showcased a trick he
just recently mastered which looks like an under backflip. These
two riders set a huge standard for final rider
Pastrana. Known for his imaginative riding, the favorite
was forced to push himself even more than usual. This
evening though his limits were found: the 22-year-old American
experienced a severe fall after using two obstacles on the course
as a step-up jump. With the crowd chanting the legend's
name, Pastrana was able to walk off the course with
assistance and wave once last time to the audience he
inspired with his abilities.
This inspiration was reciprocated as the crowd also inspired the
riders: "I have fallen in love with these
fans", raved Travis Pastrana after round one. Last
year's winner Ronnie Renner thanked the fans with the "largest
whip of my (his) life", and the Mexican
local matador, Johan Nungaray, spoke after his run of the "best and
most exciting two minutes, I have ever experienced".
Red Bull X-Fighters Mexico City 2006
1. Mat Rebeaud (SUI)
2. Ronnie Renner (USA)
3. Travis Pastrana (USA)
4. Dani Torres (ESP)
5. Andre Villa (NOR)
6. Robbie Maddison (AUS)
7. Nate Adams (USA)
8. Eigo Sato (JPN)
9. Sebastian Mejia (COL)
10. Johan Nungaray (MEX)