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Jed Mildon Lands the First-Ever BMX Quad Backflip

July 13, 2015

What a day. After years of dreaming, months of practice, and several missed attempts that racked up injury after injury, the world-first BMX quad backflip has been conquered. As the only two athletes who’d ever landed a triple backflip, Jed Mildon and James Foster went toe-to-toe to make history (click here for the full backstory). Both were capable and both wanted it, but in the end injuries derailed Foster’s progress, and Mildon stuck the BMX quad flip.

Tons of fans got to watch it happen thanks to NBC, but for those who missed it (or those who want to see it again), here it is:

It wasn’t easy. Mildon’s initial efforts to land the quad in New Zealand were sidelined by poor weather and morale. In the U.S., meanwhile, Foster was getting closer and closer to dialing it in, and it looked like the proposed plan of having both riders make the attempt simultaneously wasn’t going to be possible. But in a move that proves what a good-natured rivalry this was, Foster agreed to hold off on his attempt to let Mildon have more time to practice. It was a pivotal decision that may have made the difference in the outcome of Revolution Day.

In the meantime, Nitro Circus went back on tour, and during a show in Australia Foster broke several ribs, benching him while he healed. With Mildon still struggling in practice and Foster out, the future of the quad was in serious doubt. But the moment he was declared fit to flip, Foster was back on his bike and at the top of the ramp, raising hope that Revolution Day was nigh. It was not to be, though, as in his practice attempts he re-injured his ribs again and again, and despite his perseverance, Foster was unable to continue the quest.

Jed Mildon and James Foster at Travis Pastrana's house in Maryland.

After Foster had to step out, Mildon changed location to Foster’s setup at Pastranaland in Maryland and began several sessions of air bag practice that didn’t go well. It looked like the quad might actually be impossible, as some had suggested. But then, a twist: Mildon asked to pull the bag and just go for it, which had more than a few people raising an eyebrow after Mildon’s practice attempts weren’t coming around like they knew he was capable of — and like he would need to execute if he was going to stick it.

The bag was somewhat reluctantly removed, but if you’re imagining an immediate and triumphant success, you are mistaken. Mildon suffered several painful misses without the relative safety of the bag, bone-crunching crashes that had everyone present worrying that he would also have to bow out due to injury, or worse. But the stacks didn’t deter him. His confidence clearly grew after each missed attempt, and with the stakes higher than ever, Mildon found the sweet spot, pulled it around perfectly, and rode away. History was made.

Jed Mildon lands the first-ever BMX quad backflip

Huge congrats to Jed Mildon for landing the first-ever BMX quad backflip! And, if it wasn’t for Foster’s work on the ramp and the technical details of the trick, history couldn’t have been made that day. Both athletes deserve all the kudos they’re getting. We’re pumped to have these guys as permanent members of the Nitro Crew — we know we’ll be seeing a ton more world firsts from both of them. And if after all that you still haven’t had enough Revolution Day, enjoy a few more shots in this behind-the-scenes gallery:

Come see Jed Mildon and James Foster performing live with Nitro Circus, coming soon to a city near you. Click here for tour information and tickets!