Alexey Kolesnikov was once the only FMX rider in Russia, but he's changing that and helping the sport grow at his Kolesnikov FMX Factory in Kolomna.
"What I like about FMX is that it's all or nothing," says Russian FMX champion Alexey Kolesnikov. "You can either do it or you can't... All the ups and downs go hand-in-hand. Both sides of FMX mean a lot to me."
Kolesnikov entered the world of motorsport at the age of 12, starting off racing motocross on a Kawasaki KX. He gradually gained experience and began to participate in multi-day enduro rallies, eventually becoming Russian champion in 2005. And it was in that same year that Alexey first began to get into FMX.
The sport had almost no profile in Russia at the time, with very few riders and tracks, but Alexey overcame those challenges and built his very own ramp and foam pit with friends in his home town of Kolomna, near Moscow. "I was in uncharted territory, as I didn't know if what I was doing was right or not," he says. It turns out he was doing it right – very right.
Fast forward a few years, and the situation changed dramatically. Alexey’s first taste of FMX fame came when the Red Bull X-Fighters touched down at Slane Castle in Ireland. He got to shake hands with living legends such as Travis Pastrana, Dany Torres, and Matt Rebeaud and experience a professional course for the first time.
In 2009, Alexey took part in the Red Bull X-Fighters Jams Tour held in four Russian cities: Omsk, Tyumen, Rostov-on-Don and Volgograd. The result? He rocked the house and rode away as the crowd's favourite in each city. In 2010, Alexey organised the first-ever FMX school in Russia.
After teaching younger kids to ride FMX, Alexey went on to win the Whip Contest in Berlin, Germany, in 2014. Two years later, he won twice at the Night of Freestyle in Hamburg.
Alexey is considered the founder of the FMX scene in Russia and is ranked among the top 20 riders on the planet. He also keeps himself busy away from competition organising his annual Kolesnikov FMX Fest in Kolomna.