ESPN announced today the cancellation of Global X Games, scaling back to its two domestic X Games events in Aspen, Colorado, and Austin, Texas, which will be held in 2014 as scheduled. International X Games events in Tignes, France; Foz do Iguacu, Brazil; Munich and Barcelona will not continue in 2014.
“We are proud to have run world-class competitions for both the athletes and spectators; however the overall economics of these events do not provide a sustainable future path,” ESPN said in a statement.
The X Games is the longest-running event in action sports, featuring competitions in snowboarding, freeskiing and snowmobiling in the winter and skateboarding, BMX, motocross and rally car racing in the summer. The event has featured some of the most historic feats in action sports history, including pushing the bar for competitive skiing and snowboarding. The sports and its athletes have benefited greatly from past event exposure.
ESPN announced the expansion to six sites in April 2012. With the expansion came new events, including Mountain Bike Slopestyle, Women’s Skateboard Park and Gymkhana GRID. The global tour also included a new emphasis on music and culture, with film screenings and concert headliners such as 50 Cent, Awolnation and Major Lazer.
The international events in 2013 provided some milestone performances. In Tignes, Iouri Podladtchikov landed the first-ever YOLO Flip in Snowboard SuperPipe. In Foz do Iguacu, Jake Brown landed the first 720 ollie in Skateboard Big Air, and in Barcelona, Alana Smith surpassed Shaun White to become the youngest X Games medalist ever with her second-place finish in the debut of Women’s Skateboard Park.
In 2014, the 19th year of X Games, competitions will be held in Aspen from Jan. 23-26 and Austin from May 15-18.
Next year will be the first time Austin hosts a summer X Games, ending the event’s 11-year tenure in Los Angeles.