The Winter X Games are back, and even though the “extreme action sports” market is a small one compared to the more mainstream professional sports, its increasing popularity is creating global stars. The X Games have been providing an international stage in which extreme athletes can compete since the first summertime games in 1995 (the first winter games began two years later), and it hasn’t looked back since. A combination of breathtaking feats and charismatic athletes has given these games—and action sports in general—increasing worldwide intrigue, and athletes like Tony Hawk, Travis Pastrana, and Shaun White have become public favorites.
Though many X Games athletes also compete in the Winter Olympics, the X Games has traditionally been the proving ground where notoriety is achieved and stars are born. For the individuals who are fortunate enough to be in the upper echelon of extreme athletes, success in the X Games can also mean a huge payout. The winners traditionally receive huge endorsement deals for taking home medals, effectively acquiring huge amounts of cash for gold medals from companies who understand just how marketable these athletes and their sports have become.
The best example of X Games success equaling major dollars is undoubtedly extreme sports’ red headed golden boy, Shaun White. Attaining a level of popularity not seen since Tony Hawk, White has taken the sports world by storm, and he is en route to becoming one of the most popular athletes across all sports, period. He’s affectionately known as “the flying tomato,” and his charming demeanor and utter dominance in competition have left him as the undisputed king of action sports, and perhaps the greatest of all time.
After winning his first Winter X medals in 2003, White has since gone on to win 16 Winter X Games medals, 11 of which are gold. And if that’s not impressive enough, White also took gold in the skateboarding vert event of last year’s summertime games, incredibly able to dominate both halves of the action sports world. White’s success has resulted in some major endorsements including Burton, Target, Oakley, Ubisoft, and Stride, earning him more that 8.5 million dollars. He’s so marketable that he recently broke off his endorsement with Red Bull (who was paying him about a million dollars a year), because he felt poised to make three times as much with another sponsor.
Now must of us aren’t making quite that much cash for gold, but then again, most of us are not professional athletes. But that doesn’t mean that we couldn’t do with a little bonus cash to fill up our pockets. If you’ve got old, unwanted, or broken jewelry lying around, send it in to CashforGoldUSA, and we’ll happily pay you back in cash. Shaun White if you’re reading this, you clearly have some extra gold medals to spare, and we’d be happy to take them off your hands.