Monster Energy’s Taka Higashino made history in 2010 – becoming the first Japanese Moto-X rider to medal at the ESPN X Games. He won bronze in Best Trick with a double seat grab back flip Indy air. But long before taking a podium rung on action sports’ center stage, Taka paid his dues on American SoCal freestyle soil – and foam pits – as the Japanese transplant took up residence here in the States in 2006. Adopted by Metal Mulisha and under the tutelage of fellow Monster Energy FMXer Jeremy “Twitch” Stenberg, Taka’s risen, like the sun, up through the global FMX ranks to the upper echelon status he now enjoys. The 2010 Dew Tour FMX champ (Salt Lake City stop winner) and Red Bull XRay stop winner in Australia, Transworld Motocross bestowed upon Taka the “Breakout FMX Rider of the Year.” Taka’s also a fixture on the Feld Motor Sports-produced Nuclear Cowboys tour. AT X Games in 2012 he won gold in Moto X Greestyle and second in Moto X Best Trick. Take is the first Japanese medalist in the X Games.