A storm of superstars is headed to Knox BMX Club in Knoxfield, Victoria for this weekend’s Knox Thunderdome thanks to a turbocharged format, $7000 prize pool and a tonne of racing over two huge days at the track.
The quality of racing on the menu at the Victorian club this weekend has been likened to that of a national level event. The entries are spearheaded by 2016 Rio Olympian Bodi Turner, who has returned to his home base following a year training and racing in the USA.
Also lining up on the gate will be sibling duo Kai and Saya Sakakibara – the reigning Australian men’s and junior women’s champions – two-time Aussie men’s champ Corey Frieswyk, elite men Brandon Te-Hiko, Josh McLean, Andrew Hughes, Hayden Fletcher, Jye Hombsch and Wade Turner. Up-and-comers Phoebe Wallen and Leah Hearne will also throw their hats in the ring.
Undoubtedly, the talent is as large as the challenge of winning this uniquely formatted event.
Over two days all classes except for pro classes will contest four motos on day one, and two motos plus finals on day two. Riders will need to bring their best form for both days.
Meanwhile the Superclass men and Super Ladies will be a part of a thrilling spectacle. On day one there will be a one-two combination of a time trial and Top 8 Shoot-out. Riders will first line up for a time trial, to be run in random seeding order, with the fastest eight progressing through to the Top 8 Shoot-out – an all-out straight final between eight riders.
No motos, no semis. Direct final. Talk about turning up the heat.
Pro classes will race two motos and finals on the second day. The fastest riders will also be competing for the title of ‘King and Queen’ of Thunderdome, awarded to the fastest lap time recorded during motos.
Rider view: Tom Siinmaa gives the inside word
If there is an award for being a good bloke, Tom Siinmaa wins it this week. The Knox BMX club member will miss this week’s Thunderdome – which kinda puts him in the bad books – but he’ll be absent due to attending a mate’s wedding in Queensland.
That makes him a good bloke.
Nevertheless, the 27-year-old school teacher, who won the superclass race at the South Australian state titles last weekend offered the following words of wisdom ahead of this weekend:
It’s going to be a tough one to pick…In the men’s race I think it will come down to Bodi and Kai. Bodi has the experience, but Kai has just had a great year. In the women’s race it’s hard to fault Saya Sakakibara.
In saying that, someone like Phoebe Wallan will give it a good go, and no doubt will try and latch on to Saya’s wheel.
Format and prize money are big winners…The structure of the weekend is a massive drawcard, and makes me wish I was going! No one can fault the prize money either. It’s huge for a club event.
The time trial will open it all up…different types of riders might come through and make the shootout, and that could change the dynamic of the race. A one-off final will be huge too.
The track has a few quirks…The start hill is unusually flat, so you need power off the start and you have to go hard to get out of there. The next big challenge is the third straight, there are a number of combos you can use to get through there. Nailing that section will be key to winning.
But the final word is…what an awesome job from the club to put this on!
OH! And you can enter until 10pm AEDT TONIGHT – Wednesday November 1, 2017. CLICK HERE TO ENTER.