NIGHT of the JUMPs arrived at a sold out Olympic Hall in Munich on Saturday night for the opening round of the 2018 FIM European FMX Championship. 10 riders from five nations were pumped up and ready to battle it out, lifted by the 10,000 strong screaming crowd.
Check out the highlights below:
Night of The Jumps press release:
The list of riders was incredibly strong with the 4-time consecutive, reigning World Champion, Maikel Melero (ESP), Libor Podmol (CZE), David Rinaldo (FRA) and Remi Bizouard (FRA) as the FIM World Champions to grace the track. All riders had only one goal, and that was to beat the German FMX Wunderkind, Luc Ackermann on his home turf, after sealing the win in NIGHT of the JUMPs Berlin after landing his Double Backflip. It wouldn’t be an easy task of course, with the 20-year old German riding so much smoother and safer in 2018 despite his aggressive style.
Luc showed a flagrant disregard for his competition by busting out the very first Double Backflip performed in Qualifying at NIGHT of the JUMPs. He took the lead in qualifying by a massive 52 points coming into the final round. There has never been such a lead from the qualifying winner over the next best ranked rider in the history of NIGHT of the JUMPs qualification. Remi Bizouard, Libor Podmol, Petr Pilat and David Rinaldo followed the German and Spaniard into the final round.
For the other German rider to make his appearance in the Bavarian capital, Kai Haase was the first FMX rider to land the Lazyboy Backflip. For such a technical trick, it still wasn’t enough for Kai to make it to the final. The Australian, Ryan Brown crashed out of qualifying but suffered only a sprained wrist and small concussion. The 18 years old, Matej Cesak from the Czech Republic put together a solid run, while Brice Izzo just missed out on the Top 6 final by a handful of points.
In the Rockwell Best Whip competition, it was a battle between the 2013 World Champion, David Rinaldo and Kai Haase. Ultimately it was the style king, Rinaldo, who inverted his bike more and took the win. However the frustration for the Berliner was short lived, when after the break, he won the Maxxis Highest Air competition ahead of Brice Izzo at the 8.50 metre mark. At 8.50 metre, Brice just knocked the bar off on his last attempt, and while Haase knocked the bar off on the first attempt, he easily cleaned up his mistake on the second jump and took the trophy.
The final round of the best 6 riders brought the energy levels of the Olympiahalle to fever pitch. Four of the riders brought the Egg Roll on the quarterpipe. Three riders the flair. Petr Pilat just washed out on the flair and fell to 6th position, but it wasn’t great for the next 5 riders. Rinaldo put together a solid run with a whole set of different tricks together that we don’t normally see from Rinaldo in his run, but on the Double Up, he aborted his California Roll which cost him valuable points. The mistakes hurt his score and he could only take 5th position.
Libor Podmol started with a solid run, but after doing a Deadsailor Backflip in his run, he also had to say good-bye to a podium position. The reigning World Champion had the possibility to take the first European Championship event win, and Maikel Melero tried to set the benchmark high before Luc Ackermann came out for his final run of the night. While landing the Lazy Flip, Egg Roll and Nac-Nac Flair, it was the mistake on the California Roll where he couldn’t get a good run-up that he decided it wasn’t safe to push hard on the night.
The last rider who could battle with Ackermann was the three-time former World Champion, Remi Bizouard. Bizouard busted out a big Hart Flip, Egg Roll, Tsunami Flip and Volt in the Double Up. It secured him the hot seat but not before Luc Ackermann would start his final run as the last rider of the night.
The 20-year old Red Bull rider delivered everything that was asked of him. Ruler Indy Flip, 360, Nac 360, Flair and the biggest Surfer to Ruler Flip in his career to win the Honor Trick of the Day award, before he went ahead and landed the Double BackFlip. 10,000 fans inside the Olympiahalle were cheering at deafening levels when they cheered their local German rider, Luc, to victory in the first European Championship event.
The final of the FMX European Championship will take place in 2 weeks at the NIGHT of the JUMPs in Mannheim on May 5th, 2018 at the SAP Arena. With a strong performance, Luc has the chance to win the European Championship.
The Munich fans should already mark their calendars for 2019 with tickets going on sale soon for the April 26th/27th weekend of competition when NIGHT of the JUMPs returns to the Olympiahalle for the first World Championship weekend, also featuring a RACE and STYLE competition over the two days.
Results NIGHT of the JUMPs – Final
1. Luc Ackermann GER DMSB Husqvarna 412 Points
2. Remi Bizouard FRA FFM Yamaha 379 Points
3. Maikel Melero ESP RFME Yamaha 339 Points
4. Libor Podmol CZE ACCR Husqvarna 305 Points
5. David Rinaldo FRA FFM Yamaha 284 Points
6. Petr Pilat CZE ACCR KTM 265 Points
1. Luc Ackermann GER DMSB Husqvarna 379 Points
2. Maikel Melero ESP RFME Yamaha 327 Points
3. Remi Bizouard FRA FFM Yamaha 318 Points
4. David Rinaldo FRA FFM Yamaha 313 Points
5. Petr Pilat CZE ACCR KTM 299 Points
6. Libor Podmol CZE ACCR Husqvarna 278 Points
7. Brice Izzo FRA FFM Yamaha 273 Points
8. Kai Haase GER DMSB Suzuki 258 Points
9. Matej Cesak CZE ACCR KTM 218 Points
10. Ryan Brown AUS MA Kawasaki 88 Points
Results Rockwell Best Whip Contest
1. David Rinaldo FRA FFM Yamaha
2. Kai Haase GER DMSB Suzuki
1. Kai Haase GER DMSB Suzuki 8,50 Meter
2. Brice Izzo FRA FFM Yamaha 8,00 Meter
FIM Europe European FMX Championship
Overall ranking (after 1st Contest)
1. Luc Ackermann GER DMSB Husqvarna 20 Points
2. Remi Bizouard FRA FFM Yamaha 18 Points
3. Maikel Melero ESP RFME Yamaha 16 Points
4. Libor Podmol CZE ACCR Husqvarna 14 Points
5. David Rinaldo FRA FFM Yamaha 12 Points
6. Petr Pilat CZE ACCR KTM 10 Points
7. Brice Izzo FRA FFM Yamaha 9 Points
8. Kai Haase GER DMSB Suzuki 8 Points
9. Matej Cesak CZE ACCR KTM 7 Points
10. Ryan Brown AUS MA Kawasaki 6 Points
Photo Credit: Night of the Jumps