Video Vault: Mat Hoffman Head First

"At that given moment Mat Hoffman was, hands down, the undisputed king of freestyle..."

1 Oct 2014

Filmed and edited by Eddie Roman

Head First centred around Mat Hoffman, and If you rode BMX bikes in 1991, then you knew who Mat Hoffman (or Matt, at the time) was. Mat won every vert contest and was on the cover of every magazine. At that given moment he was, hands down, the undisputed king of freestyle. But, even with that knowledge, I was nowhere close to prepared for what I was about to see when I sat down and watched Head First for my first time. Most of my exposure to Mat was through magazines, which was very limiting for a guy who was known to throw down multiple variations in one air. I had no idea how much of a well rounded rider Mat really was, not only firing off unheard of vert combos at dizzying heights, but slaying the streets of OKC as well. Vert, dirt, street, there wasn’t anything Mat couldn’t do. Square aluminum handrails with knurled pegs? No problem. Matt wasn’t the only rider in the video, it also included guys like Chase Gouin, Psycho, Chad Herrington and Fuzzy Hall, but as great as those guys were, no one could hold a candle to the Condor. This video also played a part in shaping my musical tastes, giving me my first tastes of Jawbreaker and Fugazi, in fact, I still get goosebumps when i see the closing section of Mat destroying the Secret Ninja Ramp and riding to “Blueprint” from Fugazi… and I’m pretty sure that I always will. This video hit harder than Mat’s head on the flat bottom of a vert ramp after snapping a pair of Taiwanese forks. - Stew Johnson

Taken from the DIG article "The Eddie Roman Influence".