Print and Go Back ESPN.com: BMX [Print without images]

Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Eddie Fiola returns with the Proformer

By Brian Tunney
XGames.com

Eddie Fiola, '80s Freestyle BMX sensation and former King of The Skateparks, has reentered the BMX market with the release of a new signature series frame, fork and handlebars dubbed the "Proformer." The collection, available in Fiola's signature "Eddie Yellow" colorway, mimics the GT Performer frame construction of the mid '80s, but features updated geometry and modern technology such as removable cable guides and brake mounts, and an integrated headset and Mid bottom bracket. The frames were constructed at True Torch Welding in Santa Ana, Calif.

"I know some people will want to preserve this, but I prefer they ride it. Seeing someone riding this bike would be the best reward," said Fiola.

The first 50 from the collection will ship in a collectible carton, and will also include a 22-page book titled "My Life Behind Bars," a full color hard cover book filled with photos of Fiola's BMX years. The second set, items 51-100, ships without the book but features Fiola's autograph on the frameset. "This was a very hard project to work on," Fiola added.

The Eddie Fiola Proformer frame, fork and handlebar set.

Eddie Fiola rose to success in the early '80s as an innovative skatepark rider new on the Southern California scene. After short stints with Haro and Kuwahara, Fiola joined forces with GT Bicycles and enjoyed a wealth of success in BMX freestyle contests throughout the world, including the King of the Skateparks series. Fiola worked with GT to aid in the design of the Performer series of bicycles (still in production over 25 years later), but left GT in 1987 to pursue a deal with a new brand dubbed Citicat that ultimately fell through.

By the late '80s, Fiola's popularity scaled back as a new crop of vert contenders emerged in the top spot at contests, including Brian Blyther and Mat Hoffman. Rather than coast on his prior success as a BMX professional, Fiola rode contests in a "Team Unsponsored" t-shirt on occasion and concentrated on his transition into stunt work for television and movies.

Now 48, Fiola makes appearances at old school BMX jams, still rides on occasion, and earns a living doing stunts in movies such as "The Hangover" and "Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull."