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Nitro World Games to debut in Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City in the US will host the inaugural Nitro World Games action sports event next summer, it has been confirmed.

Youth action sports and entertainment firm Nitro Circus will organise the first-of-its-kind competition, which will take place at the 45,000-capacity Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah on July 16, 2016.

The event is the brainchild of extreme sports icon Travis Pastrana, who leads Nitro Circus, and the group’s creative director Michael Porra.

The one-day meeting will feature seven gold-medal events: Motocross (FMX), FMX Biggest Trick, BMX Biggest Trick, BMX Triple Jump, Skate Best Trick, Scooter Best Tricks and Inline Best Tricks.

Various new tricks, moves, formats and ramps are set to be showcased at the Games, which will be judged by independent veterans from the world of action sports. Each trick will be assigned a pre-agreed level of difficulty by the judges.

“Action sports is about progression, pushing the envelope to go bigger, faster and farther than ever before,” Pastrana said. “When it comes to competition, I expect to see the best going head to head, attempting tricks no one has ever seen before. With the Nitro World Games, we wanted to create an event that raised the bar and took action sports to the next level.”

The competition is open to any action sports athlete in the world, though two qualifying events will be held before competitors can progress to the main Games. The preliminary rounds will be held at Nitro Circus’s Academy of Excellence, which is situated at the Woodward West park in California, and at Pastrana’s ‘Pastranaland’ complex in Maryland.

Porra added: “This is a passion project for Travis and myself as well. We have worked tirelessly for three years with one goal in mind: a total reinvention of action sports competition. This is absolutely essential for the industry’s growth.

“Nitro Circus was created right here in Salt Lake City and it remains our spiritual home. It also hosted the tremendously successful winter Olympic Games in 2002. I can’t think of a better location for the Nitro World Games.”

Over 15 ramps will be used for the event, which will be mass-produced and incorporate pyrotechnics and action-replay screens. The NBC Sports Group division of US media company NBCUniversal will also broadcast three hours of the event live in the US, along with distributing rights on a global basis.