Dirt On Blake "Bilko" Williams
Bilko, the Aussie FMX character who's hard not to like because he's funny, never serious, always good for a laugh, and rides a dirt-bike like a champion, is facing the challenge of riding two big events that he needs to do well in to keep the big bucks rolling in. Now this wouldn't be so hard if he was 100% fit and healthy, but five days out from the Istanbul, Turkey round of Red Bull X-Fighters, he is still limping around thanks to a bruised foot that is taking its time to heal. I checked in with the larikin as he rested up for his last Nitro Circus appearance this past weekend in Perth to find out how he's feeling heading into the first of his big two events. Photo: RedbullXFighters.com
Bilko, how’s things: Ahh yeah, it’s alright ya know, getting there.
What about the body, is it healing up: No my ankle’s still screwed from Dubai X-Fighters. I’ve still been riding Nitro but I’ve got bone bruising in my ankle and while I’m still riding it’s not healing in a hurry!
Bilko looked good in Dubai until he cased the 120-footer and bruised his ankle. Photo: B.Gardi/RedBullXFighters
So you’re stuck in limbo between wanting to ride and wanting to heal too: Yeah I want to practice for X Games, but I need to rest so I’ve just been riding the Nitro shows on the weekend. Then I had that big stack at Melbourne Nitro, which didn’t help.
You hurt the foot again: No I was lucky and landed on my head and rang the bell, which is pretty rare for me so I must have hit the ground pretty hard. Then I just took skin off the tops of my hands, elbows and shoulder.
Are you all good for X-Fighters Turkey: Yeah I’m good, even though I haven’t had the practice I want heading into it, and my confidence isn’t the highest, but I messed up Dubai, and missed Glen Helen, so I just want to do what I can without pushing it too hard.
One thing in your favour is the course in Turkey looks smaller than previous rounds. More confined: I like the sound of that as there’ll be no big dirt jumps, which I normally don’t mind, and although it makes me sound a bit gay, like I’m just a ramp kid, but I don’t need too many inconsistency’s right now.
So X Games it’s just freestyle for you: Yeah I tried to get into Best Trick, but didn’t get in. I have a 360 combo I could run with, but there’s always a bunch of kids that want to kill themselves that get a start.
Photo right: Bilko earned a bronze medal at X Games 12 with this good-as-gets Cliffhanger Flip. Credit: ESPNActionsports
How will your foot handle X-Fighters then straight into X Games: I’ll tough it out. It hurts to ride and I can handle the pain, it’s just its unstable so it affects my balance on the ramp when I preload, which is on my mind when going for a trick. Before my Nitro crash I was doing well – got my Cliffhanger Flips, Lazyboy Flips and everything back then went and ate shit so I’m not doing myself any favours. The physio said bone bruising can take up to 12-weeks to go away, and that’s off the bike.
So one bad landing doesn’t help the cause: Yeah everytime I practice tricks and I land perfect it’s all good, but say when I come back from a trick and my feet aren’t in the perfect position and I Iand on my heel or toes that’s when it faarkin smashes it!
And you’re at the money end of the season too: Yep, the important part for sure, like Nitro is a good moneymaker, but it doesn’t get you the big pay cheques!
Well good luck getting through X-Fighters and X Games mate, I'll let you go and see you in Turkey: Yeah no worries mate, and let's eat some Turkey!