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17th Summer X Games take over LA Live in downtown

July 28, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
The 17th Summer X Games begins Thursday, and for the first time, all the events will take place in downtown Los Angeles.

The L.A. Live area has been completely transformed in preparation for the games, which kicked off Thursday afternoon.

More than 200 of the world's best action sports athletes are facing off in these games. The daredevils of sports are competing in skateboarding, BMX motocross and rally-car racing.

Events such as Skateboarding Big Air, BMX Freestyle and Motocross Best Tricks promise to deliver spectacular shows as the athletes flip and fly through the air.

Joseph Burke, Rally America 2010 Rookie of the Year, is one of many athletes in the competition.

Burke described the X Games rally car event as "motocross on steroids."

"It's speed and brains and everything mixed into one," Burke said.

Burke also said the 70-foot gap jump has been causing some trouble this year, but he said he's hoping for an accident-free season.

In the jump, every mile an hour equals about three feet of difference in the landing spot, explained Burke. He said he miscalculated earlier this season and took a spill during the landing.

Burke is keeping up a family tradition with his career. His father was a two-time U.S. champion in the Rally Series.

Olympic gold medalist Shaun White, also a medal-winning skateboarder, was expected to attend the X Games, which will last for four days.


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