Cody Elkins started his motocross career on two wheels, but back in 2009 he decided it was time for a change.
"I wondered if you could do all the same tricks on a quad," said the Oklahoman, 33. "The four-wheeler is much heavier than your standard motocross bike but in the end it is still pretty much the same thing."
But don't take his word for it. See for yourself Friday and Saturday when Elkins goes head to head with the top freestyle motocross riders in the world.
"I'll be doing everything they do," Elkins said. "It is all about timing and technique. Anything is possible."
Elkins, who holds the world record for the longest moving jump on a quad bike (73 feet, 41/2 inches), will be one of more than a dozen daredevils in the lineup at the inaugural St. Pete Action Sports at Al Lang Stadium.
Widely considered to be the world's top quad rider, Elkins will perform flips and tricks on the same ramps as the Freestyle Motocross pros.
"I am a little bigger, 6-foot-1 and 200 pounds, than the average rider," he said. "It is a physical sport. … I've broken more than 80 bones over the years. But when you do what I do, it comes with the territory.
On an average jump, Elkins will be 35 to 40 feet off the ground. "That's when I do the backflip," he said. "Right now there are only four of us in the world who can do it."
The field of FMX riders also includes well-know riders Adam Jones, Mike Mason and Javier Villwegas, seasoned veterans who are accustomed to keeping spectators on the edge of their seats.
Other acts include the Big Air Triples — BMX riders doing three consecutive jumps on a 200-foot-long by 32-foot-high ramp — and skateboarders ripping it up on the same half-pipe from the X Games.
The BMX pros include Ryan Nyquist, who has won 16 medals at the X Games, Colton Satterfield, who recently made history by becoming the first BMXer to hit a double flair on the Big Air, and James Foster of Nitro Circus fame.
Tickets are available at stpeteactionsports.com. Single day tickets: General admission $30. Two-day tickets: general admission $50; child (ages 3-12) $40. General admission student tickets (with student ID) are $20.
The St. Petersburg Power & Sailboat Show, the largest in-water boat show on Florida's Gulf Coast, runs Thursday-Sunday at the Duke Energy Center for the Arts — Mahaffey Theater Yacht Basin and Albert Whitted Park. Entering its 38th year, the show is aimed at families, boaters and marine enthusiasts and will feature powerboats, sailboats, marine electronics and products. To learn more, go to showmanagement.com.
Take It Outside
Get Terry Tomalin's tips on outdoors activities in Thursday's Weekend section.