Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 5
25 May 2018

Nico Badet - Found in Translation

Hopping over much more than the language barrier...

vans flying v clean fitbike

Interview and photos by Wes McGrath

Earlier this year while I was in Barcelona, I had the chance to meet and get to know some amazing people. Some old familiar faces and some brand new personalities that I'd never planned on meeting. One person that stuck out to me in particular was the style master from France, Nico Badet. Naturally, Nico is friends with Joris Coloumb and Anthony Perrin (whom I was staying with while in BCN) so I was able to ride with Nico quite often. It didn't take long for me to notice his unique style and approach to not only bike riding but to life itself. We began sharing ideas of his first trip to America, over coffee and a spliff he told me that he would start his trip with the Vans BMX Street Invitational and then onto a month long journey in Southern California. I didn't hesitate to invite Nico to stay at my place down in Long Beach so he could catch some classic summertime in the LBC.

Nico has no tolerance for rude people, but in light of being yelled at he keeps his cool and we finish the session on our own time!

People always give us a hard time at this spot, Nico wasn't affected by this women trying to give us the boot!

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 11

Long Beach has so many spots that have been touched by so many riders over the years. Nico adds his own style like no one else can...

What's up Nico? You've been traveling a lot these past few months and now you're back in Europe. Can you let us know what you're up to right now?

Right now I’m on my way from the west part of south France for the wonderful yearly gathering called, TRIP APACHE. This is when 50 bike riders and skaters come together and are simply smiling all day long! No hotel just gipsy vibes around the Basque Country in Spain during one week. It’s simple. It’s life! I’m stoked for sure, it’s our pilgrimage.

Sounds cool - Ok, let's start with the basics..




South France

Current city:

Barcelona (Spain) / Lyon (France)

Years riding:

14 years

Who are your current sponsors and how long have you been riding for each of them?

VANS - 2010 / MArieJADE - since the beginning 2009 / Fit Bike Co - 2009 / The Shadow Conspiracy - 2014 / Bros Bike Store - since the beginning 2014/ The French Connexion - Fit Bike Co French distro - 2015 / Sparkys France - Shadow French distro - 2014

Related Video

Another Day - Nico Badet In California

DIG X VANS - More Info

What have you been busy with lately, any new projects on the horizon?

Yeah I just spent an amazing month in SoCal, and I met so many great new friends. It was my first time visiting the USA so it's easy to say I had a BLAST. I have so many new projects going on, one with the French FIT distributor and THE FRENCH CONNEXION in Paris. I'm also working on my new part for the MArieJADE DVD called, Nofutur. Lastly I'll be working on a new Shadow part too.

Tell us a little about your life back in France.

My life back in France is about riding and visiting my friends, easy living... I’m about to buy a car so I can venture out a bit more. I’ll need to make some money to enjoy my summer like a prince! hehe.

Where and what do you usually ride? Who do you go riding with on a daily basis?

I love riding with everyone, everywhere so the good times never stop. I mean, I really enjoy street riding but a good bowl or a California pool is amazing! The list of my mates is too long and I’m glad about that. The BMX community is such a big family I can’t quote everyone and that’s what is so cool about this industry.

How many months out of the year are you traveling?

BMX is so large I am lucky enough to enjoy visiting my buddies all over the world, pretty much anytime... The freedom of travel within BMX is priceless and I won't ever stop enjoying that notion.

How long have you been riding peg-less?

Since 2012.

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 6

Sunsets in Long Beach at this particular spot are shinning gold down the street like nothing I've ever seen. To add to the goodness I haven't seen a wallride pedal slide like this before either!

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 25

Nico heads down the stairs for his last session of the trip and it's safe to say he had a great stay at the 666 house in Long Beach!

"So evidently, one year later everybody was riding four pegs, so I took mine off... it’s important for me to do things differently."

- Nico Badet

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 7

Summertime in the LBC is something you have to experience for yourself...

What was the main influence behind you embracing a pegless style?

The fun! Because less is more, you know?

Did your peg-less riding come directly from street riding or did it evolve from skatepark riding?

Back in 2010 during the Vans, "Let it Ride" event, I was riding four pegs and at that time I was the only one riding all four pegs at the contest. One year later everybody was riding four pegs, so I took mine off because it’s important for me to do things differently.

How much time did you spend in California and did you feel like it was enough time?

I spent one month in California and it was enough to get the feeling of how damn cool Cali can be but not enough to ride everything I've seen in videos and out of the car window! I must come back.

Which cities in California did you get to visit?

Huntington Beach / LA / Long Beach / Santa Ana / Costa Mesa / Sunken City.

Landing in California, you started your trip with the Vans BMX Street Invitational in Huntington Beach, riding alongside some of SoCal's best. How was that for your first introduction to America?

Hell yeah that contest was easy to be a part of and all the dudes were so cool and chill about riding in a contest like that... I was able to catch the “DOOR STEP” premier in Long Beach, which was the best introduction to the core of BMX in SoCal.

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 24

One of the first days we went out to uncover some LBC goodness, Nico came across this bank to rail and right away applied his pegless style!

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 20

Nico holds such a unique style that you never really know what he is thinking, even at the most local spots.

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 19

Innovation is key and Nico is no stranger to utilizing the spot and his options to make it all possible. Wedging his water bottle just right to make his move possible.

What were you up to while you spent time in Long beach?

Visiting this perfect city with these incredible spots! The size of the city was perfect for me - just pedaling downtown was best. I hate to waste my time in the traffic.

Describe your typical day in the LBC?

I started the day with a delicious peanut butter Açai and then shared a coffee with all the locals.

I was stretching in front of the ocean during the free yoga lesson and then enjoying my favorite and massive burrito at Eddie’s. After that, I was going to ride and ended up drinking a well deserved fresh corona at the “good bar” close to the Six. Thanks again to my mates for showing me all these perfect spots.

Who did you get the chance to ride with while you explored Southern California?

I had the chance to stay at Wes' house and we hit the road to get some crazy pictures and I rode with my FITBIKE team mates and also some European VANS homies. I felt like a local boy showing them the city and the cherry on top was I got to know and become friends with the good guy in black and BMX, the legendary Rick Thorne.

Did you get the chance to ride anything unique, that you don't usually ride in France?

Fuck yes! Empty pooooools!

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 9

Passengers in life are constant so make sure they're great company just like Nico!

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 2

I couldn't believe that Nico hasn't ever ridden an empty pool before coming to California. So we had a nice long session! We even caught a glimpse of Rick Thorne in the wild of Hollywood!

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 3

There's nothing that screams SoCal like a good pool session! Nico blasting the deep end out in the Hollywood Hills.

"Riding an empty pool made me feel like the Prince of Dogtown, even if I didn't visit Venice."

- Nico Badet

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 8

Even with an opposite approach, Nico laces this pedal crook past all the sketchy-ness at the bottom of the rail.

What did it feel like to ride your very first pool?

Like I said I love to ride everything and empty pools are the most iconic spots in Cali! That made me feel like the Prince of Dogtown, even if I didn’t check Venice. I can die happy, I rode an empty pool.


Can you explain how you've become friends with Rick Thorne? Has he been an inspiration for your love of pool searching and riding?!

I first met Rick when we were riding that Hollywood Hills pool, he's super funny and an awesome person to be around and ride with, such a real dude! You can feel his experience in our little community of BMX. I have so much respect for people who help drive BMX with a focus on fun and respect! So yes, he has been an inspiration to me, I am younger than him and looking up to older riders with respect is what it takes to have a solid new generation of riders... It's all about motivation and congratulations in between all the good times.

Is there anyone you'd like to thank?

Thanks to Andy Zeiss (Vans Europe) for sending me over the ocean! Jerry Badders for the perfect visit at the massive VANS HQ. Chris Moeller ( FITBIKE / S&M) and Dylan for welcoming me at the Building and for showing me what 'Made in USA' means! Ian Morris (Four Down Distribution / The French Connexion ) For driving me to the famous 605 ditch and for my first ever empty pool session. Tony Malouf for being a perfect TM (FITBIKE) Wes McGrath for your beautiful pictures and for the amazing hospitality.


Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 16

Sunken City out in San Pedro was a staple spot for Nico to visit. We had a running joke all month about how badly Nico wanted to ride and enjoy Sunken City!

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 15

This spot showed to me the drive that Nico has for his riding. This big 180 wasn't easy to deal with all the loose dirt and broken glass everywhere!

Nico Badet Digbmx Wes Mcgrath 21

Nico has so much to offer BMX with his attitude and his style on his bike. Supported by Vans, Nico is able to keep his flow moving without a hitch!

Nico Badet is supported by our Official DIG Partners: VANS | FIT BIKE CO | 4Down x The French Connexion


Photo Journal: Eclat Motorhomies

Don't know where we are going, but we know where we are sleeping.


The Raph Jeroma Williams Interview

"​BMX is my escape from reality"

Related Content

Snapshots - FIT GLASGOW
Snapshots - FIT GLASGOW
Snapshots - FIT GLASGOW
Snapshots - FIT GLASGOW

Snapshots - FIT GLASGOW

Benny L, Olly Rendle, Josh Roberts & Nico Badet

5 Oct 2016
Fit London
Play Button


Austin Augie, Brandon Begin, Ethan Corriere and Tom Dugan

9 May 2018
Nico Badet Bros Lost Clips Bmx Street
Play Button

Nico Badet - Bros Lost Clips

Three year old footage finally surfacing

18 Apr 2018
Play Button

Nico Badet "Don't Stop" - Fitbikeco

Hi8 Cali dreaming, don't skip the beat

4 May 2018
Nico Badet Grand Rue
Play Button

3.6.5 épisode 1: Nicolas Badet

For Grand Rue

10 Aug 2016

Latest Content

Y Pof Hc1g Pwhqdefault
Play Button


"Get to de choppa!"

19 Jun 2024
6xvq77np Nbshqdefault
Play Button


An Italian Full-Length Video

19 Jun 2024
5bz D Gg Kk XM8hqdefault
Play Button


Japanese jammin'

19 Jun 2024
OK7 NYH Nnrmkhqdefault
Play Button

Kanode Knows - Antonio Chavez

Making Money in BMX, Getting on Fiend, and a BMX Plus Cover at 12 years old

19 Jun 2024
C Oq X7vb RP 8hqdefault
Play Button

Volume Bikes - Jason Watts Smoko Bars

"Take a Smoko and go ride"

19 Jun 2024
Dqanp Dk P Ej Mhqdefault
Play Button



18 Jun 2024
3 EI Gn Dvey7 Yhqdefault
Play Button
Hzz RZWLE6 Uhqdefault
Play Button
M Bo FPVN2i9 Qhqdefault
Play Button

Source BMX - Brett Silva - Bike Check

A fist and a half of seatpost

14 Jun 2024
N7 XG Hm9ls Ahqdefault
Play Button


2 Weeks in Cali

13 Jun 2024
Xn Eteozzp U Uhqdefault
Play Button

Profile - Doctors without Boredom –Spoke & Word Ep. 4

Perfect Tabes, Emergency Medicine, and Dr. Luis Pinzon

13 Jun 2024
Sb RM3b UD Vshqdefault
Play Button



12 Jun 2024

DIG Partner stores

More Features

Jamie Pipe Tribe

A Brave New World - The history of KHE Bikes, Part 2

Taiwan, a pornstar, and innovation in a can

18 Apr 2024
Dragon Higa gap to manual copy


This is Project X - This is BMX

9 Apr 2024


"I got my first WTP frame at the back end of 2001. Half a lifetime ago."

21 Dec 2023
Simple session 2023 boyd hilder 9

Simple Session 2023 Photo Journal

23 years and counting...

27 Sep 2023
BOH RAIL JAM 2023 47

Battle of Hastings - Photo Journal 2023

From the beach to the basement of Source Park

12 Sep 2023
Trey Jones Pocket Air1 Aguilar 2023
20230804 DIG GLASGOW 0028


Jammin' and premierin'

11 Aug 2023
20230421 OHIO 0218

Postcards from Ohio - Photo Journal

3 cities, hundreds of spots

9 Jul 2023
45 dig 93 by dolecki LYNN 250 POSH

Trails Closed - The End of Posh Woods

Why the legacy of Posh will absolutely endure

14 Jun 2023
2nd angle Zack Scott DIGBMX 4

The "Full Coverage" Interview

Never underestimate the camera guy!

8 Jun 2023
Robin in Split Croatia Photo Kieran Cooper 7

Robin Bourhis “From Engineering to Riding”

The story behind his WTP 2023 Video Part

26 May 2023
Darty burnslow digbmx 12

Darty in the Ditch 2 - Catching up with Brett Silva

Austin comes together to ride and remember...

23 May 2023