Metal Mulisha rider Ronnie Faisst wins medal at X-Games 16

X-Games 16

FMX Rider Ronnie Faisst

2010 X-Games 16

Mays Landing native Ronnie Faisst will never forget this year’s X-Games 16 competition.

Faisst left the X-Games 16 at Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sunday thinking he had narrowly missed out on the chance to finish in the top three in the Moto X Speed & Style event, which combines motorcycle racing with tricks. He was wrong.

A review of Faisst’s bronze medal race with fellow Metal Mulisha team member Jeremy “Twitch” Stenberg revealed that the checkered flag was raised one lap too early.

When race officials realized their error, it was too late to re-run the race, so to be fair, both Faisst and Stenberg were given bronze medals, according to ESPN officials.

It was a solid result for Faisst, who wasn’t even officially in the event until Thursday. Faisst was in his hotel room when the call came letting him know the decision was made to award each rider the bronze.

“They called me, like, an hour later,” Faisst said in a phone interview from California on Wednesday. “It was cool to get a medal but at the same time, I didn’t even feel like I had won a medal. I didn’t really get to share the victory and be on the podium at X-Games 16. It was like, ‘OK I got a medal,’ but I really would have been pumped to win that race and know that it was 100 percent mine.”

Faisst took a half-lap lead when Stenberg fell, but Stenberg caught back up and took the lead after Faisst’s bike stalled out on the course.

In the confusion of the race, the flagger gave the checkered flag on the third lap and not the fourth and final time around the course.

Stenberg jumped off his bike and tossed it over the final jump, basically wrecking the bike. And with Stenberg on top of the landing spot off the final jump, Faisst simply rode over the final jump and figured the race must be over.

Stenberg went and stood on the podium and received his bronze.

A little time later, race officials figured things out and corrected their decision.

“My medal is in the mail,” Faisst said, jokingly. “But it’s better than nothing. It’s better than them saying, ‘OK, you’re fourth and we don’t care.’ At least X Games is stepping up and saying we made a mistake and this is the only way we can correct it.”

Faisst was in the hotel room spending time with his dad Ron, sister Dawn, niece Kiera and cousin Chuck after the race when he found out.

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