Nigel Sylvester, professional BMX rider. (Photo: Getty Images, Photographer, Jerritt Clark)
At first, Nigel Sylvester was just a boy on his bike in Queens, NY. He’s still on his bike years later, but this time it’s a bike he designed and he’s getting paid to be on it. Now sponsors like Nike, Gatorade and G-Shock are helping Sylvester on his journey to the top of the BMX game.
NIGEL SYLVESTER EXPLAINS WHY HE WANTS TO BE THE FACE OF PRO BMX:
The 24-year-old is known for his street tricks, which include riding over railings, taxicabs and maneuvering in between buses, cars and people all over New York City streets.
Sylvester was discovered performing tricks on his bike as a teen, and stays close to the street bike scene through performing in cinematic-style web videos for his sponsors.
Nigel Sylvester is making history as … a talented African-American BMX rider who has taken his street tricks to new roads, from the guardrails of New York to other cities across the U.S. While Sylvester seldom competes, he has managed to get sponsorships from some of the biggest sports-related companies in the world to continue filming his rides.
What’s next for Nigel?
Sylvester recently parted ways with one of his sponsors, bike company Mirraco. There are rumors that he may be in the process of working with another company to head their brand or develop his own.
A little-known fact about BMX racing …
BMX, considered an extreme sport, debuted as an Olympic sport in the 2008 games in Beijing, China.
THE GRIO’S Q & A WITH NIGEL SYLVESTER
Q: What’s next in this chapter of your life?
now I’m focused on BMX, getting better and growing my business acumen. BMX is
like most things in life, you never stop learning and there is always room to
improve. Personally I’m focused on being a better me, I’m always thinking about
how can I be a better son, brother and friend.
Q: What’s a little fact about you that many people don’t know?
A: One thing many people don’t know about me is
that I have a very addictive personality. If I find something I like whether
it’s food, music, etc, I tend to do it to the extreme, you see how I am on a
Q: What’s your favorite quote?
A:One of my favorite quotes is “You only Live
Once.” That quote was something I said to myself when I made up my mind to
pursue BMX professionally. I believe you have to try different things
throughout life because you never know what can happen and you can easily
surprise yourself with great outcomes.
Q: Where do you get your inspiration?
A: I draw inspiration from so many different places
and that’s why I love NYC. The city offers so much on a daily basis whether
it’s music, art, fashion, or culture. I’m able to pull from all these different
walks of life, put it into my riding and then project it back onto the world
with my spin on it.
Q: Who are/were your mentors?
person I really look up to is my big brother Adrian Sylvester. I
truly believe if it wasn’t for him I would not be in the position I’m currently
in. He’s been such a motivating force in my life, I can’t thank him enough for
all the blessings and wisdom he has shed upon me. He doesn’t ride BMX but
the life lessons I’ve learned from him help me navigate through life.
Q: What advice would you give to anyone who wants to achieve their
A:I always emphasize to people that you must chase
your dream and never give up. I feel if you really want to achieve your goals
and become successful in life developing a ever lasting hunger for whatever it
is you want is required. I’m just as hungry to succeed today as I was when I
first started riding.