X Games: Matt Buyten sets record, wins Moto X step up gold
Matt Buyten set an X Games record by jumping over a 37-foot-high bar on his dirt bike in the Moto X step up final Thursday at Staples Center, a jump that earned him the gold medal, his second in a row in the event.
Moto X step up, which is basically a high jump with dirt bikes, was contested in a final-only format featuring six riders lining up 30 feet from a nearly vertical wall of dirt. Each of the riders tried to jump over a horizontal bar positioned between two vertical bars at a height determined by the competition director.
If a rider knocked the bar to the ground, that rider had one more chance to clear that bar or else be eliminated. After each round, the bar was raised and the process was repeated until a winner was determined.
The previous record was 35 feet, set by Tommy Clowers in the 2000 X Games in San Francisco. Brian Deegan broke that when he cleared 35.6 feet on his second attempt Tuesday.
The final came down to Ronnie Renner and Buyten. Renner missed clearing 37 feet in two tries, and Buyten cleared it in his first.
There are no silver or bronze medals in this event.
-- Baxter Holmes