BMX Update – Australian Cycling Team Olympic Nominations

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Cycling Australia (CA) have provided updates with regards to the nomination processes for BMX Race and BMX Freestyle after the suspension periods as of March 2020.

For BMX Race and BMX Freestyle, the Olympic qualification periods for which should have ended on the 1 June 2020 and 27 May 2020 respectively, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have replied favourably to the following propositions from the UCI:

BMX Race: The points awarded at two weekends of the UCI BMX Supercross World Cup during the 2021 season and at the 2020 UCI BMX World Championships will be added to those taken into account in the ranking of 3 March 2020. The remaining UCI World Cup weekends are still to be determined and will be communicated at a later date. CA will also await further updates from UCI as to the rescheduled dates for the 2020 UCI World Championships and the 2021 UCI BMX Supercross World Cup schedule.

BMX Freestyle: The points awarded at two weekends of the UCI BMX Freestyle World Cup during the 2021 season will be added to those taken into account in the ranking of 3 March 2020. The weekends are still to be determined and will be communicated at a later date. 

With specific regard to the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) nomination process, we will continue with our approach to nominate athletes with medal-winning potential as a priority,” said CA Performance Director Simon Jones.

These changes to the qualification window simply mean we have more time to get those nation quotas that will support our medal targets. With COVID-19 looking like it’s under control in Australia, we will need to make the best of this situation and work towards 2021 goals.

CLICK HERE for the full update from the Australian Cycling Team

BMXA will continue to update you regarding all changes surrounding Olympic qualification and UCI events.

Young Aussie riders taking on the world

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The early rounds of the UCI BMX SX World Cup were extremely pivotal this year with the Olympics just around the corner and very few places available for the showdown in Tokyo.

Nevertheless, the world cup in Australia presented some of Australia’s youngest talents an opportunity to compete, learn and challenge themselves against the likes of world number ones Niek Kimmann and Laura Smulders, current Olympic gold medallists Connor Fields and Mariana Pajon and heavyweights of the sport Carlos Ramierz Yepes, Alise Willoughby and David Graff.

Shannon Petre, Georgia Potter, Patrick Bognar, Diesel Connor, Jayden Keogh, Marcus Wigg and Ethan Zrna were the seven youngest riders in the first two rounds of the world cup at Shepparton.

Jesse Asmus, Harrison Davis and Morgan Seward are a part of the crew born in 2003  as well and were due to compete at Bathurst, however due to the bizarre weather they didn’t get a shot.

All these riders have danced with the best in Australia for their age group, some even the world, but coming up against the best of the best athletes in their prime was a completely new mission!

Georgia Potter of Happy Valley pegged the world cup rounds as her favourite events she has ever competed, stating the experience was amazing.

“To race against someone like Alise (Willoughby) who I’ve looked up too for a while was surreal, I never thought I would be racing against them, especially in my first year as a junior elite.” Potter said.  

Potter felt at home at Shepparton, with her home track Happy Valley and Shepparton her favourite tracks. However, 2020 Potter stated will be her biggest year yet.

“On the national stage I’ve been a little unlucky so far, I want to change that. “ 

“I was a little worried going into the world cup that I was going to do poorly but I pushed myself and I did better than I thought I would,” 

“This is my biggest takeaway, now seeing the best, I want to reach that, and the only way is to train hard, nationals is a big goal for me,” Potter indicated, as her goal for 2020.

Joining Potter on the world’s stage in the men’s ledger was Ethan Zrna of Mildura, who was racing at a world cup, in his home state and felt more relaxed than he thought he would at his first world cup event.

“It was a little bit easier than expected, as I felt there wasn’t as much pressure for me going into the race as I was out there to have some fun,” Zrna stated.

The current Victorian state champion, a title he has held for the last six years, loved every moment of his time during the world cup, even though it was just the four races.

“I got to race against Kai (Sakakibara) and Izaac (Kennedy) which was awesome but to even see the likes of Niek Kimmann and Connor Fields a couple tents over from you was amazing,”

This will be Zrna’s first national championships as a junior elite and the teen stated this year was all about experience, with the world cup rounds the perfect way to start the year.

“The biggest take away from the world cup was the importance of the mental game, seeing how the pros deal with it all Is something I need to add to my game,”  

“This year will be big for me in being consistent, making sure I get through every lap and hold my own game.”

You can check out all the results of the Australian rounds of the world cup HERE

National Championships entries close tomorrow night for challenge riders, make sure you register HERE

BMX AUSTRALIA STATEMENT REGARDING ACCIDENT AT BATHURST ON SATURDAY

The rider, Kai Sakakibara, fell on the second corner of the track in the day’s opening round and was assessed and treated onsite for head injuries by paramedics and a doctor from 1300MEDICS, before he was taken to Canberra Hospital by a NSW Ambulance helicopter in a critical but stable condition.

BMXA will provide support to Kai and his family and request privacy at this time. No further public comment will be made until further notice.

Round 3 UCI BMX SX World Cup Recap

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The day commenced with practice early on Saturday morning under overcast skies due to a low system over NSW that has caused flash flooding across the state.

The elite men then kicked off with round one before the rest of the program was abandoned due to the weather conditions. The women’s competition did not start.

The day was further marred by the injury to Australian Kai Sakakibara. You can read BMXA’s official statement HERE.

For results purposes for the men’s event, final placings will be based on the position a rider finished in their respective round one moto. Therefore, if a rider placed first in their heat, they will be one of the top 18 riders in the ledger. Riders are then ranked according to their finish time in that moto.

For second placegetters, regardless of whether the time was quicker than that of a rider who came first in another moto, will be placed from 19 to 36 and again ranked by finishing time. The formula continues through the rest of the placings.

CLICK HERE for all the round one results.

The shortened format was taken out by 2016 Rio Olympic gold medallist Connor Fields (USA), Great Britain’s Kye Whyte and American Corben Sharrah.

For the Australians Josh Mclean finished as the best placed rider, seventh overall, with a time of 34.754 and just behind him in eighth was Anthony Dean with a time of 34.856. Alex Cameron had a massive race, moving from third at the second berm to finish first in his moto in a stacked heat and 16th overall.

Bodi Turner posted a time of 35.27 and was 22nd after the round. Bradley Game took out 24th, Max Cairnes 25th, Izaac Kennedy 32nd and rounding out the top 36 is Shane Rosa.

Andrew Hughes had the quickest time of the third placegetters with a 35.405, which means he placed 37th. Matt Krasevskis was 39th, Wade Turner finishes 46th overall, Jayce Cunning 47th, Kyle Hill 49th, Corey Frieswyk 51st and Joshua McDermott rounds out the top 54.

Racing is expected to resume tomorrow.

 

 

 

World Cup Round 3 & 4 – Preview

For the first time in over ten years, the UCI BMX SX World Cup travelled Down Under to the regional hub of Shepparton for rounds one and two and in its entirety, the weekend went well for the Aussies.

Anthony Dean of Cross Keys BMX Club and Saya Sakakibara of Southlake/Illawarra produced Australia’s best results from the weekend, both placing second in round one and in round two, both made the finals however just missed out on the podium, with both finishing fourth.

Dean and Sakakibara now sit second in the world cup rankings and after blitzing through every one of their qualifiers before making it to the final last week, with Sakakibara grabbing the fastest lap time and Dean, the quickest gate time, they will both be fired up and ready to do one better at Bathurst.

Lauren Reynolds (Bunbury) and Izaac Kennedy (Logan City) both had cracking weekends too with Reynolds making the final in both rounds and Kennedy grabbing third place in the first round. Both riders have spent a considerable amount of time training at Bathurst and have their sights on the Olympics.

A couple of riders will be looking to join the above in the finals. Caroline Buchanan made the semi-finals in round two of the world cup as did Kai Sakakibara. Both riders, having improved on their round one results, will be eager to boost their UCI points at a track that they both know very well.

Not all riders this weekend will be striving for those elusive world cup qualification points, with some looking to test themselves on the world stage.

Shannon Petre, the youngest girl on the women’s ledger and Oli Moran, are both determined to fight as hard as they can and prove they can dance with the best. Petre, only coming back from injury recently, will be looking to get as much experience with the best before the world championships in May, whilst Moran is keen to challenge himself and do one better in the junior elite at worlds this year after placing second in Belgium last year.

Brandon Te Hiko unfortunately won’t be competing after falling in the first round of the world cup last week. The 22-year-old posted on social media revealing his disappointment but is glad the injury was not too serious.

You can keep up with all the action tomorrow and Sunday on BMXA’s social pipes and you can watch the live stream of racing at BMX Live tv – CLICK HERE– , with racing starting at 11AM on Saturday and 11:30AM on Sunday. Finals at 3PM on Saturday and 4:35PM on Sunday.

Tickets are still available – HERE

Aussies plateau in the second round of the world cup

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After yesterday’s stellar results, Saya Sakakibara grabbing second in the women’s and Anthony Dean and Izaac Kennedy grabbing second and third respectively, there was high hopes amongst the crowd and Aussie camp.

Leading into the women’s final, Saya Sakakibara and Lauren Reynolds looked red hot in their early rounds and both qualified first and second in their semi-final moto, generating the second and third quickest times of the semi-finals.

Unfortunately, after a positive start, Sakakibara and Reynolds were caught up in a tangle of bikes at the first berm that left Reynolds on the tarmac and Sakakibara off the pace. It was a tough way to end a positive day of racing, with Sakakibara finishing fourth and Reynolds finishing sixth.

Both riders looking to improve ahead of round 3 and 4 of the world cup next week.

“I’m disappointed right now, I was riding really good today and yesterday as well, even with the wind but then the crash at turn one, I just hung on, but I was too behind, “ Sakakibara said.

I’m feeling ready, physically I’m there and I’m in contention to win so I just need to keep improving,” Sakakibara said looking ahead towards the next two world cup rounds in  Bathurst next week.

Caroline Buchanan improved on her quarter finals in round one and made the semi-finals of the world cup for the first time since 2016 at Papendal. Buchanan had a fantastic day of racing and is taking positive strides during her first return to a UCI event at Shepparton since her near career ending injury.

On  the men’s ledger, Dean and Kennedy were looking to maintain and improve their fantastic form from round one and started the day in a positive manner. Dean looked a hot favourite throughout the whole day, barnstorming every race and besting round one champion Niek Kimmann in the semis. However, in the final, Dean missed the beat on the start and felt the effect. In a valiant effort he jumped from eighth to fourth.

Throughout the day, Aussies were progressing in full flow with seven males and three females making the semi-finals. Kai Sakakibara improved on his round one result of the 1/8 finals and finished 16th overall. Alongside him, bowing out in the penultimate leg was Josh McLean, who finished 15th and made his first semi-final since 2017, with Izaac Kennedy taking out 14th and Bodi Turner taking out 13th.

For a full list of Australian results, see below:

MEN WOMEN
Anthony Dean – FOURTH Saya Sakakibara – FOURTH
Bodi Turner – semi final Lauren Reynolds – SIXTH
Izaac Kennedy– semi final Caroline Buchanan – semi final
Joshua McLean – semi final Des’Ree Barnes – 1/8 final
Kai Sakakibara – semi final Annaliese Rokov – 1/8 final
Max Cairns – 1/4 final Erin Lockwood – Last Chance round
Andrew Hughes – 1/4 final Sara Jones – Last Chance round
Corey Taylor – 1/8th final Shannon Petre – Last Chance round
Matt Krasevskis – 1/16th final Georgia Potter – Last Chance round
Kyle Hill – 1/16th final Rachel Gaskin – Last Chance round
Bradley Game – 1/16th final Kiana Botfield – Last Chance round
Nathaniel Rodway – 1/16th final
Matthew Tidswell – 1/16th final
Jayce Cunning – 1/16th final
Joshua Boyton – 1/16th final
Kale Warner – 1/16th final
Oliver Moran – 1/16th final
Shane Rosa – 1/16th final
Joshua McDermott – 1/16th final
Hayden Fletcher – 1/16th final
Jye Hombsch – 1/16th final
Wade Turner – Last Chance round
Dylan Bennetts – Last Chance round
Damon Hocking – Last Chance round
Corey Frieswyk – Last Chance round
Ashton Wypch-Coles – Last Chance round
Ethan Zrna – Last Chance round
Jamie Gill – Last Chance round
Harrison Craig – Last Chance round
Jayden Keogh – Last Chance round
Patrick Bognar – Last Chance round
Nathan Glab – Last Chance round
Diesel Connor – Last Chance round
Benjamin Bullen-Aslin – Last Chance round
Adam Carey – Last Chance round
Marcus Wigg – Round One

 

Australian riders shine in ‘home’ BMX world cup

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It was the first time Australia has hosted a world cup round in more than a decade and the locals took advantage, with Rio Olympian Anthony Dean and Tokyo hopeful Saya Sakakibara grabbing silver medals, while rising star Izaac Kennedy finished third.

Dual Olympian Lauren Reynolds finished fifth in the women’s race too, making it the first time since the second round of the 2015 world cup in Papendal that four Australians were featured in finals on the same day. That time around it was Dean, Sam Willoughby, Reynolds and Caroline Buchanan.

Dean and Kennedy were pipped in the men’s race by reigning world cup champion Niek Kimman (Netherlands), while Sakakibara followed home only American world champion Alise Willoughby. Colombian two-time Olympic gold medallist Marian Pajon was third in the women’s event.

Willoughby, who alongside Reynolds is trained by her husband, London Olympic silver medallist and Australian BMX Hall of Famer Sam Willoughby, raced in a helmet that was painted half in the red, white and blue of her native USA and half in the green and gold of Australia was a popular winner, despite getting the best of Sakakibara.

The 20-year-old Australian had looked electric leading into the final and was the fastest qualifier from the semis, returning to the world cup podium for the first time since her breakthrough victory in Santiago Del Estero in the final round of 2018.

In the men’s event Dean was  back in the top three for the first time since the same Santiago Del Estero round in 2018 and the 2016 Olympic finalist, who also trains under Sam Willoughby, was over the moon with his performance.

“It was good racing, warm day, hot weather and now it’s raining so it was a crazy day,” Dean said as rain bucketed down on the track just minutes after the conclusion of the event.

“It’s a long track, very demanding so I’m just happy to finish with a second, even though I really wanted that win in front of a home crowd. Second place though, I am stoked with that.”

Dean said recovery would be key ahead of Sunday’s second round, but he was confident of a strong showing.

“Definitely after today’s performance, I know where I am at, I know I am capable of winning so I’m very excited to go home and rest, get ready for tomorrow.”

Meanwhile Kennedy showed that he is the hottest teenage prospect in men’s BMX by snaring his third podium in just his second ever world cup final and only his sixth ever stop in the sport’s premier global series.

Dual Olympian and former world champion Caroline Buchanan continued her return from serious injury but was knocked out in the quarterfinals in a dent to her bid for a third Olympic Games berth.

Sakakibara’s brother Kai, who finished 2019 ranked tenth in the world, looked fantastic all day before becoming a surprise elimination in the 1/8th final.

Racing resumes at midday on Sunday.

For a full list of Australian results, see below:

MEN WOMEN
Anthony Dean – SECOND Saya Sakakibara – SECOND
Izaac Kennedy – THIRD Lauren Reynolds – FIFTH
Kai Sakakibara – 1/8th final Caroline Buchanan – ¼ final
Corey Frieswyk – 1/8th final Des’Ree Barnes – Last Chance round
Jayce Cunning – 1/8th final Rachel Gaskin – Last Chance round
Bodi Turner – 1/8th final Erin Lockwood – 1/8th final
Max Cairns – 1/8th final Sara Jones – Last Chance round
Joshua McLean – 1/8th final Shannon Petre – Last Chance round
Andrew Hughes – 1/8th final Georgia Potter – Last Chance round
Matt Krasevskis – 1/16th final Annaliese Rokov – Last Chance round
Bradley Game – 1/16th final Kiana Botfield – Last Chance round
Nathaniel Rodway – 1/16th final
Wade Turner – 1/16th final
Joshua McDermott – 1/16th final
Shane Rosa – 1/16th final
Kyle Hill – 1/16th final
Joshua Boyton – 1/16th final
Oliver Moran – Last Chance round
Corey Taylor – Last Chance round
Hayden Fletcher – Last Chance round
Brandon Te Hiko – Last Chance round
Dylan Bennetts – Last Chance round
Matthew Tidswell – Last Chance round
Marcus Wigg – Last Chance round
Diesel Connor – Last Chance round
Adam Carey – Last Chance round
Damon Hocking – Last Chance round
Ethan Zrna – Last Chance round
Harrison Craig – Last Chance round
Benjamin Bullen-Aslin – Last Chance round
Nathan Glab – Last Chance round

How the BMX World Cup works, and how important the first four rounds are

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The opening rounds of the 2020 UCI BMX Supercross World Cup at Shepparton BMX Club are rapidly approaching, so before the gates drop, here’s a quick summary of the world cup including the format, the point system, and where the entire world cup will journey.

THE 2020 UCI BMX SUPERCROSS WORLD CUP

  • Round 1 – Shepparton BMX Club, Victoria (Australia) – February 1

  • Round 2 – Shepparton BMX Club, Victoria (Australia) – February 2

  • Round 3 – Bathurst BMX Club, New South Wales (Australia) – February 8

  • Round 4 – Bathurst BMX Club, New South Wales (Australia) – February 9

  • Round 5 – National Cycling Centre, Manchester (United Kingdom) – April 18

  • Round 6 – National Cycling Centre, Manchester (United Kingdom) – April 19

  • Round 7 – National Sports Centre, Papendal, (The Netherlands) – May 2

  • Round 8 – National Sports Centre, Papendal, (The Netherlands) – May 3

  • Round 9 – Rock Hill BMX Supercross, South Carolina (United States of America) – May 15

  • Round 10 – Rock Hill BMX Supercross, South Carolina (United States of America) – May 16

THE FORMAT

Early Rounds: Riders compete in the opening round of racing. The top four of each race go into the qualifier rounds while fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth place battle it out in the Last Chance Round.

Last Chance Round: Every rider who didn’t progress to the qualifiers has a chance to battle their way in through the last chance round. The riders who finish first or second in each race of the Last Chance Rounds progress, while the other riders pack up their bikes early.

The Qualifiers: The qualifiers begin the main road to the final gate drop. Depending on numbers, the qualifiers consists of 1/16 finals, 1/8 finals, quarterfinals, semi-finals and of course… the final!

Riders who don’t make it into the top four of each qualifying race are knocked out.

The Final: The remaining eight riders after the long knockout stages compete in the all-important final for a chance to finish on top of the podium and receive the most points.

THE POINTS

Obviously, the rider who picks up first in the final accumulates the most points. The top eight all get unique points for making it to the final. But from there, the points are distributed based on their overall ranking.

The points can be seen below.

FINAL

  • 1st = 150 points

  • 2nd = 130 points

  • 3rd = 115 points

  • 4th = 100 points

  • 5th = 90 points

  • 6th = 80 points

  • 7th = 75 points

  • 8th = 70 points

SEMI-FINALS

  • 9th – 10th = 65 points

  • 11th – 12th = 60 points

  • 13th – 14th = 55 points

  • 15th – 16th = 50 points

QUARTER FINALS

  • 17th – 20th = 40 points

  • 21st – 24th = 35 points

  • 25th – 28th = 30 points

  • 29th – 32nd = 25 points

1/8 FINAL

  •  33rd – 40th = 15 points

  • 41st – 48th = 10 points

  • 49th – 56th = 7 points

  • 57th – 64th = 4 points

Kicking off the world cup series with a win is a huge momentum boost for the remainder of the year. Getting ahead in terms of points is a powerful message to the rest of the competitors, and USA’s world champion Alise Willoughby couldn’t agree with the statement more.

“Obviously being an Olympic year, it’s so important to get that great start at Shepparton,” Willoughby said.

“With everything being so condensed in the schedule, there isn’t a lot of time to make up if you’re not where you want to be.

“More to that, Shepparton is well known for having the most similarity to the track in Tokyo, which means not only will the racing be really competitive, but it’s almost like a test run for the big show later in the year.”

Race Plates in 2020

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As of this year, BMXA are not issuing race plates for the national series. This means riders can use their own race plates and save time acquiring one on the day.

Race plate colours will vary depending on the class the rider competes in. An example of this is, only riders with a UCI issued International Elite Number will be permitted to use white plates and black number combinations. A black plate with white numbers will not be permitted at any of the national series events.

Race plate numbers will vary from event to event with state numbers only permitted at state or club events, for all national events, only Australian and world number combinations will be permitted (i.e. W1 and 1A with the correct colour combination).  The number a rider enters for their first stage of the 2019 BMXA National Series, will be their number for the entire series, unless they have achieved a national or world plate result at the respective events.  A change to an “A” or “W” plate will be permitted if requested after these events.

All of the above is clearly outlined in Rule 54 of the BMXA 2020 Rule Book on pages 35 & 36.

If riders turn up with an incorrect colour/number combination they will be requested to change it prior to taking to the track and/or starting the next lap. Further to this if riders require a plate on race day for the national series events, BMXA will have limited number of race plate available for sale at a cost of $50.

If you would like to review the BMXA 2020 Rule Book – CLICK HERE

Please CLICK HERE, for a full breakdown of race plate numbers and colours.