The city of Shanghai will once again host KIA X Games Asia, Asia's premiere action sports competition, as it returns to China for the third consecutive year -- celebrating 11 years of Asian X Games events.
This year the event will showcase more than 200 of the best action sports athletes from more than 20 countries and five continents in world-class competition in the sports of Skateboard, BMX, In-Line Skate and Sport Climbing. New to the Asian X Games, this year's event will also feature a Moto X Big Air demonstration. Televised live from Shanghai's KIC Jiangwan Stadium, X Games Asia will air May 1 – May 3 on ESPN Asia networks and will be organized by sports broadcaster ESPN STAR Sports along with the Shanghai Media Group and Shanghai Sports Federation. The event will also be shown on ESPN International networks in Latin America, Australia, Middle East and Africa.
"We are thrilled to be back in China, and look forward to delivering another exhilarating event to action sports fans in Shanghai," said Rick Alessandri, senior vice president, X Games Franchise. "We are excited to work closely with KIA Motors to continue this tradition of bringing world-class action sports competition to China."
This year, competitors can look forward to an increase in prize money for the event, and Skateboard, BMX, and In-Line participants for the street discipline can also expect a new course design that will resemble real street conditions.
The KIA X Games Asia has earned a strong global reputation with a significant increase in awareness about action sports in the region. Last year's event was enthusiastically received by the Shanghai community and broke attendance records with more than 52,800 people passing through the gates of Yangpu district's KIC Jiangwan Sports Center an increase of more than 55% from 2007.
The Games are bolstered by the addition of a new Silver Sponsor in Mountain Dew and the elevation of Apparel sponsor Pony to the Silver category. New brands like Doritos and Cold Stone have also picked up sponsorship packages. And ESPN has entered in to a collaboration with licensing agent IMG for the launch of an X Games consumer products line planned for later this year in China.
Leading up to this year's event, KIA X Games Asia 2009 kicked off with a three-city, eight-stop roadshow tour in December and will finish at Shanghai's Wanda Shopping Mall April 25-26. The roadshows include demos in BMX freestyle and In-Line skate, musical performances, entertainment acts, prize giveaways and an interactive mini-skate park for spectators to test their skills.
The event is proudly sanctioned by the Chinese Extreme Sports Association and is organized by ESPN STAR Sports, the Shanghai Media Group and the Shanghai Sports Federation. The Shanghai Yang Pu District Government is the event's Special Organizer and the Shanghai Sports Competition Management Centre is the co-organizer while the Shanghai Extreme Sports Association is the supporting organizer. The KIC Jiangwan Sports Center is the official venue.
About ESPN's X Games Franchise
ESPN held its first X Games in 1995. ESPN's Global X Events and Development group is responsible for creating the company's action sports programming currently airing on ESPN, ESPN2 and across its various international networks. In addition to the two U.S.-based X-branded events – X Games, and Winter X Games, ESPN has held X Games competitions and demonstration events around the world, including Dubai, Thailand, Brazil, Mexico, Korea, Malaysia, China and Spain. The global X franchise has also expanded its reach to ESPN.com/Action, the definitive site for action sports fans, and to consumer products such as X Games bikes, protective gear, skateboards and DVDs.