Jeffrey Whaley always dreamed of making a living from his sport, but he never expected to reach his goals the way he did, even as a BMX expert for the Cirque du Sun Volta show.
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But in 2017, the Montreal native and four other athletes came up with a BMX number that turned out to be the show’s conclusion.
“BMX was the finale of that show and it was one of the numbers that worked the best, it was really impressive,” Whaley said in an interview with QMI Agency.
The five specialists in the discipline have been on the road for several years and have completed more than 1,300 shows in total. However, the tour ended in 2020, like several other events, due to COVID-19.
“It was an opportunity I never imagined, even growing up. Le Cirque, I know I’m from Montreal, but I don’t have a circus “background,” added the 26-year-old athlete. I had never seen a cirque show before I worked for them.”
“It was really a great opportunity to be able to make a living from our sport but also to be looked after very well by a big company like Cirque. I compare it to ice hockey in the National League.
more than one way
By sharing his story, Whaley wants to show young people in particular that there isn’t just one way to play sport for a living.
“It shows young people that there isn’t just one way in sports like this. You don’t just compete, you are sponsored by Red Bull. You can make a living making YouTube videos. Some people make a living from it. There are some that run competitions and have sponsors, but there are also some that do video projects or shows.
Whaley is also present at the 10th anniversary of Jackalope, a festival celebrating certain extreme sports, this weekend on the Esplanade of the Olympic Park, he who has attended the event as a spectator but is taking part as an athlete for the first time.