X Games' First Year In Austin Brings Out 160,000, But Heat, Long Lines Draw Complaints
The four-day attendance for the X Games' first visit to Austin was 160,000, and the "biggest complaints fans voiced ... on social media were the heat and being turned away at crowded general-admission areas, which were first-come, first-served," according to Dave Doolittle of the AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN. Last week's event marked the first of ESPN's contracted four-year run in Austin, which included competition downtown and at the Circuit of the Americas. ESPN Senior Dir of Events & Content Strategy for the X Games Tim Reed said that next year's iteration "will probably be held on the same weekend in June ... when temperatures usually climb into the mid-90s." He added that to "mitigate the heat, organizers will consider holding more events in the cooler evening hours." Medical staffers "treated an average of 100 people a day for heat-related issues." Reed said that the large demand at general-admission areas was "normal: 'It’s no different over the 20 years we’ve been doing this'" (AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN, 6/11).