Mat Hoffman

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Mat Hoffman
Mat Hoffman (2006).jpg
Hoffman (center) in 2006
BornJanuary 9, 1972 (1972-01-09) (age 47)
OccupationBicycle Stunt rider, organizer
Years active1986–present
Spouse(s)Jaci Hoffman (m. 1993)
ChildrenJet Hoffman and Giavanna Hoffman

Mat Hoffman[1] (born January 9, 1972) is an American BMX rider who is considered one of the best vert ramp riders in the history of the sport.[2] He is nicknamed "The Condor" and runs the BMX Freestyle brand Hoffman BMX Bikes based out of Oklahoma City, OK.


In 1983, when Mat Hoffman was 11 years old he competed in a contest in Madison Square Gardens. He had learned to ride BMX on his own and didn't have any other riders for reference. He remembers: "when I got to that contest I went 'woah, I guess I am going higher than everyone else'."[3]

In 1987, at the age of 15, Mat Hoffman became the youngest SPROO to join the freestyle BMX circuit. An article in Ride Magazine commented: "What's left to say about a guy who ignored all established limits and redefined vert riding – at age 15[?]". He won the first contest he entered as a professional and took home a check for $2200.[4]

In 1991, Hoffman attained the pro division and launched both Hoffman Promotions and Hoffman Bikes.

He developed the Bicycle Stunt (BS) Series to give riders a place to compete and to showcase their talents. ESPN joined with Hoffman Promotions in 1995 to produce and televise the series each year.

The growth of Hoffman Promotions gave birth to the Hoffman Sports Association (H.S.A.), the organizing body for BMX Freestyle events worldwide, such as ESPN's X Games and all international X Games bicycle-stunt events.

Hoffman has produced, directed and hosted several TV series for ESPN including Kids in the Way, HBtv and Mat's World. In February 2008, Hoffman produced and co-hosted Mat Hoffman's Evel Knievel Tribute with Johnny Knoxville, which aired on MTV and featured record-breaking stunts by Travis Pastrana, Trigger Gunn, Allan Cooke and Davin Halford.

Hoffman partnered with Activision to produce Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX video game and Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX 2 video game – released in August 2002, in conjunction with the release of Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX2 Tour TV show, which aired on ESPN2 and is available on DVD and VHS.

He has had involvement in a number of film projects, such as:

An ESPN 30 for 30 documentary entitled The Birth of Big Air, directed and produced by Jeff Tremaine, Johnny Knoxville, Spike Jonze and Hoffman, himself, was released in July 2010.

Past projects include two shows produced by Hoffman – Mat Hoffman's Aggro Circus at Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida, and Mat Hoffman's Danger Defying Daredevils at Six Flags Magic Mountain near Los Angeles, California.

The book The Ride of My Life[5] documents his story through 2001.


Hoffman is responsible for building the sport for decades, providing support to the biggest names in the industry, including Dave Mirra, Jay Miron, Kevin Robinson, Chad Kagy, Seth Kimbrough, Taj Mihelich, Brad Simms, Anthony Napolitan, Mike Escamilla, Rick Thorne, Kevin Jones, Chase Gouin,Pete Augustin Day Smith, Art Thomason and many more.

As a testament to his support and working together with others across the various disciplines of extreme sports, in the late 1990's Hoffman released a limited edition BMX bicycle through his company, Hoffman Bikes, endorsed by and named for the legendary Evel Knievel. Knievel and Hoffman had a long-standing close friendship. (Source - Hoffman's Autobiography, "The Ride of My Life")

Hoffman and his team were also selected to take part in the closing ceremonies of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta, GA, in a production called "Sport as Art." In 1999, H.S.A. developed Mat Hoffman's Crazy Freakin' Bikers Series (CFB), which provides amateur and professional Freestyle bikers a venue in which they can compete. Not only does the H.S.A. promote, organize and host the series, but it also produces all the television programming for the CFB Series, which is aired on ESPN2.

The H.S.A. organizes BMX Freestyle portions of annual U.S. and international events, including the X Games and all international X Games qualifiers. The year 2005 marked the 14th consecutive year of competition production for Hoffman Promotions.

In 2001, Hoffman competed at the X Games, earning the Bronze Medal. He stunned the industry and fans, alike, when he set another record by successfully completing the first-ever No-handed 900 at the 2002 X Games, resulting in the Silver Medal.

Hoffman was the first person to ride an oversized ("Big") ramp in 1993 with his first High Air attempt off of a 24-foot quarter pipe. On one of his runs, he tore his spleen, and had he not gotten to a hospital within five minutes, he would have died. When Hoffman achieved 26.6 feet above the ramp in March 1999 to 2001, he had a team of four professional photographers, an elaborate scaffolding system to record the attempt at different angles and had an ABC Wide World Of Sports camera crew on-site.[citation needed]

Hoffman is also credited with being the first person to perform a double peg grind down a handrail, as documented in the video Head First, released in 1991. The trick has gone on to be a foundation of modern day street riding.

In 2005, Mat was elected the President of the International BMX Freestyle Federation, the international governing body of BMX Freestyle.

Also in 2005, the Mat Hoffman Action Sports Park opened in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. It has since been recognized as one of the 10 best such parks in the nation.[6]

In February 2018, Mat was inducted into the Oklahoma Sports Hall Of Fame.

X Games Medals[edit]

Summer X Games[edit]

  • 1995 Newport - Extreme Games: BMX Vert: Gold medal (1st)
  • 1996 Newport - X Games II: BMX Vert: Gold medal (1st)
  • 2002 Philadelphia - X Games VIII: BMX Vert: Silver medal (2nd)
  • 1997 San Diego - X Games III: BMX Vert: Bronze medal (3rd)
  • 2000 San Francisco - X Games VI: BMX Vert: Bronze medal (3rd)
  • 2001 Philadelphia - X Games VII: BMX Vert: Bronze medal (3rd)


Video games[edit]

Mat worked with Activision to produce the video games Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX and Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX 2, the latter released in August 2002 in conjunction with the Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX2 Tour TV show. Hoffman also appeared in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4 and Tony Hawk's American Wasteland, also produced by Activision.


  1. ^ @ 23MAG BMX
  2. ^ Matt Higgins, "Rider’s Vision of Bigger Ramps Helps Launch Big Air", New York Times, July 29, 2010.
  3. ^ "Mat Hoffman Interview". Mpora. Retrieved 2017-10-10.
  4. ^ "Mat Hoffman Interview". Mpora. Retrieved 2017-10-10.
  5. ^ Hoffman, Mat (2002). The Ride of My Life. New York: ReganBooks. p. 371. ISBN 006009415X.
  6. ^ OKC Skatepark Named One of "Ten Best" in National Geographic Travel Guide
  7. ^

External links[edit]