Two wheels met four today in a spectacular stunt to mark the one-month countdown to the Red Bull X-Fighters on Sydney’s Cockatoo Island and the iconic Bathurst 1000 motor race.
The events share the same weekend in October, with the freestyle motocross World Tour finale to be contested on Saturday the 6th, and the 1000km event at Mt Panorama to be held on Sunday the 7th.
2011 Red Bull X-Fighters winner Josh Sheehan back-flipped his 450cc dirt bike over the TeamVodafone V8 Supercar with Craig Lowndes atop, to mark a month until the motorsport-packed weekend gets underway.
Between them, the freestyle motocross and V8 Supercar events are set to attract hundreds of thousands of fans and a television audience of millions.
Sheehan threw his motorcycle skyward with the iconic Sydney skyline in the background.
The last time he did this he went on to win his first-ever Red Bull X-Fighters clash, beating out the best in the world in front of a frenzied home crowd.
The West Australian rider has been racing the clock to complete an intense rehabilitation program following injury to ensure he is ready to defend his crown.
Today’s stunt blew out some of the cobwebs and Sheehan admitted feeling some nervous excitement as months turned into weeks.
“I have been putting a lot of effort into training and today has been a real eye-opener as I realise that it’s exactly a month before I’ll be here defending my Red Bull X-Fighters title from last year,” said Sheehan.
“I’ll be doing everything I can to win it but for the competition as a whole it is exciting to be going to the final round with two riders – Levi Sherwood and Thomas Pages – tied on points.
“This is one of biggest motorsport weekends New South Wales’ has ever seen and it’s great to be a part of it.”
Of Lowndes, Sheehan said “Craig’s an Australian sporting legend so it’s amazing to meet him and be involved in such a unique jump at Cockatoo Island.”
V8 Supercar driver and multiple winner of the Bathurst 1000, Lowndes enjoyed being part of such a unique stunt and said it was great for motorsport in general for the events to share the same weekend.
“That was great fun – we watch these guys from afar so it’s great to actually be a part of it,” said Lowndes.
“Away from the track I’m out on the dirt bike as much as possible so I have a great appreciation for just how much skill and practice freestyle motocross must take.
“It’s exciting to be sharing the weekend with Red Bull X-Fighters. I’ll be behind the wheel on qualifying day at Bathurst so won’t be able to get back to Sydney for a look but will definitely be following the progress of Josh and the other Aussie riders.”
Limited tickets to Red Bull X-Fighters are still available, starting at $69.00 (plus booking fee) including ferry transfers. Visit ticketek.com.au/xfighters to purchase.
The Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour TV series premieres tonight at 5.30pm on 7mate, Each weekly, one-hour episode will showcase all the action from each tour stop, building up to the Sydney Final in October.