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Maikel Melero wins NIGHT of the JUMP’s World Cup season opener in Basel/Switzerland just ahead of Luc Ackermann.
Basel, January 27, 2018: On Saturday the kick-off of the FIM Freestyle MX World Championship 2018 took place in Basel. 10 riders from six nations competed in the St. Jakobshalle at the NIGHT of the JUMPs.
The four-time reigning World Champion Maikel Melero (ESP) was unruffled by the other riders‘ swagger. With his usual spectacular run, he secured the pole position for the final, and was joined by his O’Neal team mate Luc Ackermann (GER). The German fought his way to the final despite making a mistake, plus a crash when he threw down an unexpected miniflip.
Luc was third out in the final and was on fire, with a Surfer Tsunami Flip, Long Distance Nac 360, a huge Indy Ruler Flip, a perfect Flair and yet another mini flip, which he had crashed out on in the preliminary round. When he added to this the California Roll in the Double Up, the audience went wild. The judges put him straight into the hot seat.
The reigning World champion Maikel Melero was also suffering from from first event nerves. However, he was able to compensate for his Flip-Deadsailor and clawed his way back with a Cali Roll to 1-Hand lander, and iced the cake with a Nac Flair. With a thin margin of nine points he was able to take he win at the first World Championship race of the year, ahead of Luc Ackermann.
Will we see Maikel Melero be World Champion for the fifth time in 2018, or will the youngster from Germany finally claw his way onto the throne and unseat the four-time world champion?
It will be fascinating to see how things pan out over the next three weeks, when the next championship round points will be awarded. The FMX athletes will meet once more at the NIGHT of the JUMPs in Berlin (16/17 February 2018 – Mercedes Benz Arena), with Maikel Melero and Luc Ackermann leading from the front.