Zack Warden's never-give-up attitude won him the gold at the KIA X Games Asia in the BMX Mini-Mega Finals.
It was a windy day in the Jiangwan Stadium, and several riders had found the going tough, including BMX legend Chad Kagy, who was also hampered by a painful left wrist that had recently undergone surgery.
With the rest of the field still trying to work out how to adjust to both the conditions and the Mini-Mega Vert, Austin Coleman showed the way forward, pulling off a string of one-handed tail whips and 720 spins that elicited loud whoops and whistles from the Shanghai audience.
But it wasn't long before Vince Byron, who had won the BMX Vert on Saturday, decided to step up his game as well, and the Australian nailed a Backflip-Double Tailwhip on the jump, and followed up with a Quarterpipe-540 no-handed Bar Spin on his fourth run to pull ahead of the competition with 89 points.
Enter Zack Warden.
The American, who had already crashed hard twice in his previous runs, dug deep and left the Jiangwan crowd in awe, as he pulled off a Backflip-Bikeflip on the jump, and raised the bar further by completing a Triple whip with a hang time that beggared belief, to leave Byron with the silver and Kagy with the bronze on 83 points.
A cold and wet Warden, who had been dunked by his fellow bikers celebrating his victory on the podium, admitted that he had not expected to improve on his previous silver medal in the Mini-Mega.
"I really wasn't expecting this", the American admitted, " but of course anything can happen."
"This win feels great, and it's an upgrade of my silver medal from the last X Games.
Warden admitted his come-from-behind victory was down to a simple refusal to give up.
"Bike-riding's like life, like how Rocky Balboa put it- you have to pick yourself up and get going after after you fall, and that's exactly how I felt climbing those stairs right before the winning run", he added.
Even fellow competitor Byron had to put his hands-up and admit defeat after Warden's superlative performance, and the Australian said: " Zack (Warden) just put up an inspiring performance and blew us away".
The reigning BMX-Vert champ was still "stoked" with his two medal haul saying: " One gold and one Silver in Shanghai isn't that bad".
Kagy, on the other hand, had mixed feelings after winning the bronze.
"I put in a 100%, but with how my left hand has been hurting, it was always going to be difficult", the rider admitted.
He was pleased with at least being able to show the Jiangwan crowd his famous Super Man backflip in the final round.
"I did it for the crowd. In fact, I've never seen such a big turnout , and the X Games Asia is really getting bigger and better each year."
The fans at the Jiangwan will certainly be looking forward to a fully-fit Chad Kagy in 2012!