By Jackson Taylor, News Editor
On Thursday, the maverick monument in front of HPER wasn’t the only bull on campus. Bicycle Motor-Cross (BMX) Rider Terry Adams and the crew of his sponsor Red Bull were at the University of Nebraska at Omaha as part of his promotional college campus tour.
Adams’ career as a 12 year-old in a small town just outside of New Orleans, where he discovered his passion for flatland riding. Flatland is a freestyle BMX style of riding that is often referred to as a work of art.
“This started as a childhood dream,” Adams said. “We started out as kids in the neighborhood riding bikes, and I kept riding, wanting to make a profession out of it.”
Today, Adams lives that dream through sponsors like Red Bull.Adams approached Red Bull as an amateur, looking for them to promote a flatland event. Some Red Bull corporate employees were impressed after watching a video of Adams riding in a flatland competition; thus, their relationship began.
Adams says working with Red Bull is exciting and that their partnership has brought nothing but success to him and the promotion of flatland riding.
“It’s cool working with Red Bull because nothing is too out of the box,” he said. “If I present them an idea for a photo shoot or a video shoot, they will stand behind me.”
This kind of support is what has allowed Adams and Red Bull to be together for more than ten years.
With the support of sponsors and fans, Adams is putting flatland on the map. In fact, many of his peers call him “the ambassador for flatland.” He first made a name for himself winning an X Games gold medal in 2005 and then receiving the Ride BMX Magazine’s Number One Ride Award, the most prestigious achievement in his sport, twice.
Now, Adams says his focus is to make sure flatland is promoted through the media in an exciting way that grows the sport.
Adams’ college campus way tour is part of this promotion. He has been to more than 100 college campuses, but never as a student. “I never went to college so it’s cool to experience this in a different way,” he said. Adams noted that he liked UNO, although he said the weather is too cold and it was slightly difficult to find a flat place to ride. He eventually discovered the walkway outside of Criss Library was flat enough to ride.
With students gathered around him and the camera rolling, Adams put on a show of wheelies and other creative tricks.
“It was impressive to see how many tricks he could do on just a bike,” said Ashley Steffes, a freshman.
Adams was on campus from 4-8 p.m. but never in a set spot or showtime.
“There really is no show. I just find flat spots to ride on, and if students walk by and want to check it out, they can,” he said. “I like it because it’s kind of me in my element; we’re not forcing anyone to come.”
Adams’ tour is almost up. His final stops are at the University of Iowa and Iowa State. One thing is for sure: his promotional tour is certainly spreading the word about flatland BMX.