|1976||DOB: february 26, 1976.|
Birthplace: Columbus, Ohio, USA
|early years||Colin Winkleman, www.dkbicycles.com: I rode bikes like all the other kids in the neighborhood since I was little, like 6 or 7 years old I guess. When I was about 11, I saw the movie Rad; I was already way into riding bikes all day everyday, but that secured my addiction. It's embarrassing, but true. I guess you could say Cru Jones was my first BMX hero.
Colin, nhbmx.tk: When I was 11 I started racing a little bit and just spent every waking moment on my bike. That got me hooked and once I learned about freestyle and rode some ramps I thought it was the best thing ever. I was 11 years old and lived in Okinawa, Japan on a military base...so my riding influences were very limited for the 3 years that I lived there. I got BMX Plus! and that was about it. I think I ordered 101 freestyle tricks and watched it to try to learn stuff, that and just riding with my friends. My parents supported me by allowing me to do what I wanted but I pretty much had to buy all my own bikes, pads, wood for ramps, bike parts, and anything else. It's ok though, if they would've bought everything for me, I may have lost interest. I think having the drive to get better at something has to come from yourself.
Colin, nhbmx.tk: When I graduated high school, I moved to Ft. Wayne In. with a bunch of riders who lived there(The Fathouse, 1201 vid., ring of fire vid., the ravine trails) Lots of people probably have heard about that place. Anyway, Stu Johnson had a clothing company called Scum and asked me to ride for him. I got free t-shirts, and I think he may have even helped me pay to enter a few contests. That was my first sponsor ever.
|1992||2nd place soon to be mini @ 1992 BS finals, Chicago, november 1992.|
|1993||1993 BS round 3, Oklahoma City, september 1993.|
|1994||Colin is riding for DK.
3rd place stuntboys street @ 1994 BS round 4, SCRAP Chicago, Illinois, november 1994.
Colin, Tread, 1996: Before the contest, I heard Rooftoptalking about doing the transfer to the quarter, and I had akready been thinking about it, and I was like. "Oh shit." So I went up and asked him. "What did you just say ?" And he was like "Oh, um this is on the down low, but I was thinking about jumping from the quarter to the spine." Then I was like "Ah I wanted to do that." and then he was like "Whatever we'll both do it. Just don't tell anybody." So he tried to jump to the other side of the spine and I tried to air it. It was stupid cause I tried it three times and never pulled it, and then it got made such a big deal of.
A new star is born. Colin Winkleman brought the stunts back into the bicycle stunts series in a very big way. Photo by Chris Hallman.
|1995||Appleton contest with Colin Winkleman almost pulling a huge double flip in Props #8 may june 1995, Ells Bells Release the Grease and Ride BMX US #17.|
Video FBM Ring of Fire
|1996||1st place stuntboys and 9th place stuntmen street @ 1996 BS round 1, South Padre Island, march 1996.|
He was the first rider to ever win an ESPN street contest. Colin won the 1996 Destination Xtreme amateur street contest at South Padre Island, Texas, and turned pro the following day.
Blue Helmet Boy (Colin Winkleman) came along! This boy went nuts! He did two flip twists an the mini, a big old flip jump, and this huge gap jump from one quarter to another that had to be twenty feet. 1st place. Colin Winkleman then decided to go pro! He still did his big gap jump for ninth.
Interview in Tread issue #2.
8th place street @ 1996 X-Games.
|1997||Colin Winkleman is getting a signature bike called the Slightly Over Built (SOB).
Colin, Tread, 1996: I designed a jumping bike for DK. It's kind of a cross between a TAJ, an STA, and a Holmes sort of; and also a cross between the DK racing bike because it has the same bends on the chain stays. It's basically a real thick walled, fat tubed jumping bike. The head tube pierces the top tube and the down tube, and it wraps around and it's welded in the front. So at least your head tube won't pop off. Hopefully they'll be out not long after we test the prototype.
Colin Winkleman, Ride BMX UK august 1998: I asked Jason Steig (from PUSH) what I should name it and he said, name it the Mutherf'ker. I said, that'd be cool, but I don't think they (DK) would go for it. Then he said, call it the Dickshitter, I was like that's even better, but DK won't go for it. Then he said, call it the Sonofabitch. SOB's a little more family oriented -you can say it stands for "Slightly Over Built." It means Skank's Oily Butt, Some Other Bike, Stinky Onion Breath... whatever you want. We have a T-shirt that says Soldier of Battle.
4th place stuntmen street @ 1997 BS round 2, Orlando, Florida, may 1997.
Colin Winkleman went for the biggest transfer of the weekend from a quarterpipe to the hip, but when he landed with on foot on the hip and the other almost on the ground, every male in the audience cringed. He also rode away from a perfect flair.
Interview in Ride BMX US june july 1997.
19th place street and 22th place dirt @ 1997 X-Games.
ESPN loves riders to look wacky for the cameras, so Colin Winkleman went all out before the X Games and sported a bright orange "Krusty the Clown" haircut.
1997 DK summer tour: Leigh Ramsdell, Jeff Harrington and Colin Winkleman.
Video FBM Live Fast Die
|1998||Video DK Damn Kids.|
Colin Winkleman, Ride BMX UK august 1998: I got 19th and 22nd in street and dirt respectively. 19th was in street because the only parson I beat was Joe Rich and he was hurt too (Colin ruptured his appendix prior to the X Games).
Interview in Ride BMX UK august 1998.
|1999||Props Road Fools 3.|
19th place street @ 1999 X-Games.
|2000||Poster & interview: Ride BMX US june 2000|
10th place stuntmen street @ 2000 BS finals, Nashville, Tennessee, june 2000.
12th place park @ 2000 X-Games.
4th place pro street @ 2000 NBC Gravity Games
Video Ride BMX US "Industry".
On december 21st, 2000, Colin Winkelmann successfully jumped 13 Ford Expeditions at the Paramount Ranch outside of Malibu, California. The Guiness record for a power-assisted jump of 116'11" was documentated by the Guinness television crews. Colin Winkleman is the Guinness Book of World Record holder for longest BMX bicycle jump. Pulled by a motorcycle to get speed, Colin jumped 116' over 13 Ford Expeditions.
|2001||Props Road Fools 7.
2nd place pro street @ 2001 CFB round 1
9th place pro park @ 2001 BS round 1, Anaheim, CA, march 23-25, 2001.
Colin Winklemann had great qualifying runs, but kinda looked lost in the finals. He still managed to flair transfer from tranny to wedge, and he did cool 180 sprocket stalls on a pretty steep handrail.
UGP Roots Jam april 2001
Flair to tailtap
8th place stuntmen park @ 2001 CFB round 2, Perris, California, may 2001.
At the end of a 20-minutes jam, Colin Winkleman and Ryan Nyquist were the only riders left on the course. Colin was determined to pull a 270-to-icepick-to-270 back in and Ryan was there to cheer him on. Although Colin pulled about a million different variations, he never quite got the trick he wanted. But it was great to see everyone get behind him, and you can't ask for a better way to end a contest.
Interview in Props 40.
The Colin Winkleman interview is great. Done like a talk show interview, with Leigh playing the part of the idiot talk show host who doesn't know anything. Not only do you get to see Colin working through a variety of parks and ramps, his distance jumps and some burly wipeouts, you also get to see some great 'back in the day' footage.
5th place pro park @ 2001 ESPN X-Games
August 2001, Colin sets his sights on breaking his own record 120-foot jump.
|2002||Poster & interview: Ride BMX US march 2002|
2nd place @ 2002 La Revolution, Toronto
Colin blew his knee out pretty badly at the Toronto contest trying a crazy flair transfer.
|2003||Colin Winkleman poster in TWBMX november 2003|
Go-kart launch ramp DC ad.
|2004||2004 had been one of Colin's best years to date. He qualified first at the ESPN CFB at Woodward West and had an even better run going at the most recent Vans Triple Crown event in Denver. Unfortunately that run ended with a bad crash and Colin left the event on a stretcher. He suffered a separated shoulder and his riding was finally back up to par at Pastrana's.|
Colin broke a vertabrae or two and completely shattered his ankles, trying to recreate the go-kart backflip, this time with Nate Wessel and a conversion van instead of a go-kart. It didn't work out so good.
Team DK/Right Guard Xtreme Sport rider Colin Winkelmann suffered the worst crash of his career this week during a contest at Travis Pastrana's home in Maryland. Colin bailed from higher than twenty feet in the air and broke both of his ankles and his left wrist upon impact.
Pastrana's contest awarded $2,000 to the rider/filmer team that captured the craziest video clip at his Maryland home. Colin and fellow pro Nate Wessel constructed a 6-foot high, moving launch ramp and landing on top of a full size van. Colin pulled a similar stunt with a moving go-kart ramp for a DC Shoes ad. Test runs went well with the van parked and Colin pulled the highest flip of his life. Unfortunately once moving, the van traveled too fast, causing Colin to completely miss the landing. "I was praying that I'd catch the landing, but knew I wouldn't so I threw my bike," he explained. He landed on both feet and the impact broke both of his ankles. The harsh landing pushed him backwards and broke his wrist. He was rushed to the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore. Despite being in extreme pain and depressed about his injuries, Colin seemed to be in good spirits. Not only did he describe his crash in explicit detail, he talked about other stunts gone wrong at Pastrana's, including one where somebody jumped a 1000cc street motorcycle completely over Pastrana's 50-foot foam pit. "We watched it on video and the guy was ten feet above Travis's barn," Colin explained. "They wheeled him into my room here in the hospital so we could meet. Somehow he only broke his leg."
Colin, Sent zine, october 2004: I went with Wessel from woodward a couple weeks ago, to a random sick trick comp he heard about. It was at Travis Pastranas compound, where Travis told us the rules; anything goes...any vehicle, any obstacle/trick/stunt you can think of...AND he offered to let us use any of his personal vehicles.(hes got a barn full of dirt bikes, mini dune buggies, mini bikes, and other random cool shit.)
Well, Nate and i decided to use a full size conversion van he had out back to make a massive moving box jump. By moving i dont mean it folds up and you can drive it somewhere, i mean the van drives down the road w/ a lip on the front and a landing on the back. The idea was for Nate to drive at me, on my bike, going very slow and drive under me and i was going to flip the thing. Then we also wanted to drive around in it nd see if we could find any street shit we could do w/ a moving ramp.
Well, it didnt get that far. I jumped the box a bunch w/ the van standing still at the bottom of Travis driveway, and it felt good but...big... the lip was like 6 1/2 feet tall w/ a 10 foot tranny so it threw you really high. The landing was a wedge, but it was just the right angle so a proper landing felt perfect, not too harsh at all. Whatd you expect? Nate Wessel built it. Nate had stayed up super late to start planning the thing out the night before, and then after about 2 hours of sleep he was up at home depot buying supplies to build this ramp on the van a like 5 in the morning.
All along the van started and ran pretty good, but once it was time to go do the stunt it wouldnt start for nothin. That along with the delay from another guy getting hurt on his stunt(whole different story)and getting carried off in an ambulance attracting the attention of all the local cops, extra ambulances, and fire trucks made it look like we wouldnt be doing any stunting at all.
We had already started to review everyones videos from the day to judge them i guess,(it was a video contest) when this guy (i forget his name) came running up to the house saying the van was running! So everyone was like, shit, ok, we can let colin and nate try their shit and then finish judging these tapes. So we all head out to the driveway and everyone just pretty much knows what to do. I padded up, nate jumped in the drivers seat, filmers and photographers grabbed their gear, and this whole posse rolled out the driveway into the neighborhood cross the street.
I talked to nate for a quick second after hes got the van turned around and ready to go. I said just get going 15 mph and hold it steady right there. Im thinking, ill just take like 1 crank (should have only taken like a half a bitch ratchet though) and that should barely get my front wheel on the landing but, when I got about 5 feet away from the lip I was like, OH FUCK! Iknew I was going too fast.
I had actually taken like 2 1/2 cranks! The only thing I could think of was to pull up as hard as I could to try to keep from overshooting the landing. Turns out you can see in the video in slow-mo my legs just giving way and me basically seat bouncing off of the lip. I shot straight up in the air like a bottle rocket. Looks like I was about 17 feet higher than the roof of the van, thats about 23 feet or so straight up! I fell straight down, no foreward momentum at all to disperse the force of the impact.
My feet blew out from under me, my ass drilled the asphalt along with my left wrist. Final inventory was shattered and dislocated ankles, double dislocation on the right one, shattered tibia on the left along with mangled cartilage, broken scaffoid and 2 dislocated other bones in my left wrist, and last but not least, a fractured L3 vertebre. Ambulance showed up pretty quick, bout 5 minutes. That was good, but it took the medics forever to give me some pain meds.
The pain was weird, my ankles just felt like they were on fire. I guess they want to make sure you have feeling in your extremeties before they numb you up. I was like trust me, Ive got feeling. I spent 2 weeks in the hospital in Baltimore, where Nate Wessel was the best friend a guy could have. He came to visit almost every day, brought his laptop so we could watch movies, brought me food, magazines, and you name it anything I needed.
So awesome thanks again Nate! It really helped the time pass having someone there to shoot the shit with and just hang out all day. The first 2 weeks in the baltimore hospital basically was like this; first week-great nurses, good drugs that had me almost silly, crap food but i had no appetite anyway, and a room all to myself...2nd week- they moved me down from the 6th floor to the 4th. that was like going from a hilton to the ho-jo!
Nurses meaner than a dog shittin tacks(which by the way is how i felt after all the constipating drugs i was on) sharing a room with idiots who would talk shit to the docs and nurses and piss them off, pass out with their tv on full blast, and have a room full of loud as fuck visitors all damn day. Needless to say i was happy to get the hell out of there even if i was still in really rough shape. So i arranged all my own referals to docs in g-ville because the staff at u of maryland med ctr. couldnt seem to get anything done. it was like they were trying to keep me there as long as possible...fuckers. so now ive got a wheelchair, walker and hospital bed in my house to try to help make things easier...ha!
Once I got home and saw my doctor here I found out I had to have more surgery. This time on my right foot because baltimore sent me home with it still dislocated and broken! So I cant put any weight on either foot now which means...no walker just wheelchair. The only way i get around is the wheelchair or dragging myself around w/myarms on my ass.
The choices I have of places to be are lying in bed, lying in my recliner, lying on the floor, or sitting in the wheelchair. At first I could only sit up in the wheelchair for an hour or so then i gotta get my feet elevated to keep the swelling down. Now its been about 3 months and I can take my back brace off sometimes, and sit at the computer all day playing online poker to pass the time.
The thing about being hurt for this long is that I just about forget what it feels like to ride.
It sucks because at least once a day I think about whether its worth all this hardship to ride my bike. I know it is, but it definitely makes me tentative about trying more stunts in the future. I wouldnt rule it out, but I know Ill take a more calculated approach from now on. Thats pretty much it up to this point. Im getting the external fixator off my left leg on Oct. 6th, and getting a cast on. Hopefully soon after that Ill be given the ok to try to walk with a walker or crutches. I figure learning to walk and rehab will take anywhere from 1 to 2 months, then its back to the bike to see if I can get some skill back. I gotta give it up for DK and Right Guard, the best sponsors ever!
How many other companies do you know of that would stick by a rider who has been hurt as much as i have? I dont know if many would. Also DC shoes, and Vigor have both been awesome...thanks you guys. Thats it from crippled land...Hope to see you at the park! Im gonna go work on my Christopher Reeves halloween costume! just kidding.
|2005||Colin Winkleman has started a bmx parts/components company called Circus. His plan is to make parts that are of the highest quality that is in his power to design and produce. With past experience designing parts for DK, Colin thinks he has a good grasp on what it takes to make some advancements in BMX tech.
Colin, www.fatbmx.com, february 2005: I also realize that being injured for 6 months now, with the rapid pace of innovation in the industry, it's not entirely possible for me to keep a fresh perspective without being on my bike traveling and seeing all the aspects of bmx I'm usually exposed to on a daily basis. SO, all that rambling basically means that I need some input from riders. Despite not having so much as t-shirts produced yet (they're close) I've got a team together to help me bring Circus out with their input. The Circus team as it stands right now is: Stephen Lilly, Colin Mackay, Will Love and Ian Schwartz. They all have very unique styles of riding and that's important to me because I want Circus to be a company that takes consideration of all types of riding when designing parts. I'll be taking input from these guys to design the first line of Circus parts instead of just coming out with an array of copycat parts with a different logo.
I'm still healing and trying to get my ankles back in shape from the van ramp wreck. I've been up and able to walk for a while now, at first only with crutches but, it wasn't long 'till I could walk without them. My main problems now are a chunk of bone on the bottom of my right foot that makes it feel like I'm standing on a piece of gravel, and the lack of flexibility in my left one. I'm doin' good enough now to walk without people wondering...What's he got stuck up his ass? That is, just without limping. hehe. But it'll still be a while before I can ride properly.
Colin left the world on his own terms at his home in Greenville, NC.