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Snowmobile Rider Caleb Moore Dies of Injuries From X Games Crash

By Erik Matuszewski
February 01, 2013 12:01 AM EST 3 Comments
Snowmobiler Caleb Moore attends a news conference at the Winter X Games on Jan. 25, 2012 in Aspen, Colo.
Photographer: Eric Lars Bakke/ESPN Images via AP Photo
Snowmobiler Caleb Moore attends a news conference at the Winter X Games on Jan. 25, 2012 in Aspen, Colo.

Snowmobile rider Caleb Moore died seven days after crashing at the Winter X Games in Aspen, Colorado, the first fatality in the action sports event’s history. He was 25.

Moore, a four-time X Games medalist from Krum, Texas, was critically injured Jan. 24 when he was struck by the 450-pound machine while attempting a backflip in the finals of the snowmobile freestyle competition.

The X Games, which have winter and summer versions, are owned and televised by Walt Disney Co. (DIS)’s ESPN networks.

“As a result of this accident, we will conduct a thorough review of this discipline and adopt any appropriate changes to future X Games,” ESPN said yesterday in a statement.

The skis on Moore’s snowmobile clipped the ground upon hitting the landing ramp, throwing him headfirst over the handlebars. The machine then struck Moore, who was knocked unconscious.

Moore was diagnosed with a concussion at a local hospital, where doctors later discovered internal bleeding around his heart, according to the Denver Post. He was taken by helicopter to St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction, Colorado, for emergency surgery. A family spokesman told ESPN on Jan. 28 that the cardiac injury led to a “secondary complication” involving his brain.

“We are deeply saddened by Caleb Moore’s passing and our thoughts and prayers go out to his parents, Wade and Michelle, his brother, Colten, and the entire Moore family,” ESPN said in its statement. “He will be remembered for his natural passion for life and his deep love for his family and friends, and he will always be an inspiration to everyone he touched in the action sports community.”

Brother’s Injury

Colten Moore, 23, separated his pelvis the same night in a snowmobile crash at the X Games. The brothers took up snowmobiling in 2010 after years of racing and jumping all- terrain vehicles in Texas, the Post said.

“We’ve worked closely on safety issues with athletes, course designers and other experts for each of the 18 years of X Games,” ESPN said in a Jan. 29 statement. “Still, when the world’s best compete at the highest level in any sport, risks remain.”

Caleb Moore won a freestyle bronze medal in his X Games debut in 2010, taking third in the event after 30 days of practice, according to the Denver Post. He received a silver medal for best trick in 2012, when he broke his pelvis and tailbone in a crash during practice.

To contact the reporter on this story: Erik Matuszewski in New York at matuszewski@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at msillup@bloomberg.net

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