Josh Sheehan Dedicates X Games Wins to Fallen Brother

June 9, 2016

Nitro athletes went on an all-out blitz of the FMX podiums at X Games Austin this year, and Josh Sheehan led the pack, attacking each of his four events with his usual laser focus and athleticism. He didn’t disappoint. Sheeny walked away with a gold medal in the Freestyle event after a great run that culminated in a double backflip with a landing so smooth and seemingly effortless that it would be easy to forget that he’s one of the few athletes who can even land a double. Sheeny went on to pick up silver medals in QuarterPipe and Best Trick, walking away with three medals for the weekend. But it wasn’t all about medals this year. Sheeny was riding to honor the memory of his older brother, Chris Sheehan, who tragically died in 2015.

Sheehan Doing the Lazy Boy in Oslo -- Nitro Circus

Josh Sheehan performing a Lazy Boy during a Nitro Circus Live show.

Not for the first time, Sheeny put the FMX world on notice in 2015 when he landed the biggest trick in action sports history, the World’s First triple backflip. He remains the only athlete in the world to land a triple and one of only a handful who consistently lands doubles (in almost every Nitro Circus Live show, in fact). That combined with his huge backflip combos, his insane whip, and now some double backflip combos have earned him considerable renown and cemented his nickname: The Unicorn.

Unfortunately, just a few months after Sheeny landed the triple, his brother was killed in a dirtbike accident in Australia. It was a devastating loss for the family, of course, and the immediate aftermath of the accident had Sheeny unable to find the motivation he had before. But he knows his brother would have wanted him to press on, and he paid tribute to Chris at the X Games, dedicating his performance to his brother’s memory.

The course of FMX history was forever changed the day Sheeny landed the triple backflip, and it seemed like the sport would then go in whatever direction he chose to take it. At the X Games this year, Sheeny used Chris’ memory as the motivation he needed to bounce back and show the world he’s still the athlete to watch in FMX.

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