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It was shining green and gold on a scorching 30+ degree first day of the 2019 UCI BMX World Championships at Zolder in Belgium with Thomas Tucker (pictured) and Portia Eden racing to W1 cruiser plates.

COVER PIC: Courtesy of Craig Dutton

The extreme heat had spectators and riders ducking for shade and water all day but each and every one of the 32 Aussie riders competing for world plates did the BMXA family proud.

In particular were the six riders who made it into their respective finals, led by Tucker (13-14 boy’s cruiser) and Eden (12 & under girl’s cruiser), and supported on the podium by Callum Howarth (13-14 boy’s cruiser) and Tahlia Marsh (13-16 girl’s cruiser), who both grabbed bronze.

Delivering a near flawless performance, Pine Rivers’ Tucker launched the perfect start to his 2019 worlds campaign. Tucker’s goal for these championships was to not only win the cruiser, but also score his seventh consecutive 20inch title.

Well on the way to achieving it, there’s no surprise Tucker was happy with his result, especially considering the tough conditions.

“Yeah I got out in front and had a good lap there in the final,” Tucker said.

“Today was a tough day, crashed in the third moto and having to deal with the heat was key. But I got it done in the end.

“I needed to conserve my energy, so I made sure I relaxed on the third straight.

“I’m really grateful for my parents for getting me here and my coach as well for all he has done for me.”

WATCH HIS FULL INTERVIEW BELOW!

 

🇦🇺 Thomas Tucker grabs 🥇 in 13-14 boy’s cruiser! 🇦🇺

Here’s his post race interview. 👇

UCI BMX Supercross UCI BMX Zolder #HeusdenZolder19 #TeamAUSBMX #BMXAFamily

Posted by BMX Australia on Tuesday, July 23, 2019

 

Joining Tucker in the final was Nerang’s Howarth. The fellow Queenslander also notched some impressive performances in the build-up to the decider and had plenty left in the tank to pick up the bronze medal.

Last year, Eden claimed the 20inch world title and this year she has added to it, claiming a cruiser world title. Competing in a hard-fought final, the Cairns rider did everything she could to hold her one-spot on the last straight and it paid off.

Clarence Valley’s Marsh was ecstatic with her bronze medal performance. The NSW rider picked up the world no.5 plate last year in the same category and is over the moon with her new, higher ranked plate.

“I’m so stoked with this!” Marsh said.

“I’m really happy with my performance. I came second in all my motos and picked up a first place in the quarters. I came second in the semi and I couldn’t be happier coming third in the final.

“I had a great gate, got a bit shut down… but just held on to third.”

WATCH HER FULL INTERVIEW BELOW!

 

All smiles for Tahlia Marsh who has claimed the 🥉 in the 13-16 girl’s cruiser. 🇦🇺

Here’s her thoughts! 👇

BMX Zolder UCI UCI BMX Supercross #TeamAUSBMX #HeusdenZolder19

Posted by BMX Australia on Tuesday, July 23, 2019

 

In other Australian results:

  • Displaying a clean set of heels all day, Geelong’s national champion Cameron Gatt was pushed to the back of his 12 & under boy’s cruiser final and while attempting to find the front, came down with another rider to finish in eighth place.
  • Bayside’s Letitia Weatherhead made it to the 40 & over women’s cruiser final and finished in eighth position.

Australia currently sit third in the overall medal tally on four, with France in second on 10 and the Netherlands on top with 14 to their name.

Day two will feature 45 Aussie riders, eager to commence their 20inch campaigns against the rest of the world. Male riders aged 11 and under will be joined by their female 13 & under counterparts, ensuring more exciting racing heading your way.

Follow the action via the LIVE STREAM from 4:45PM AEST.