A rising star exploded onto the big stage, a pair of world champions saluted and Des’Ree Barnes won an incredible ninth straight 1A plate to highlight the final day of the 2019 BMXA BAD BOY National Championships at the Shepparton BMX Club.

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Diminutive Queenslander Izaac Kennedy has long shown he has the talent to succeed on the sport’s biggest stage and today he confirmed it by winning his first national elite men’s title at his first attempt in the class.

Kennedy set the scene with a dominant win in the inaugural Pro Spectacular on Wednesday and looked the man to beat for most of today, before flying to victory in a thrilling final to win from fellow first year elite rider Kyle Hill and the experienced Shane Rosa.

It was a remarkable performance from the affable 18-year-old, who only a few months ago was off the bike, his 2019 dreams seemingly shattered like the bones he smashed in his right hand during a race fall at the first stage of the BMXA BAD BOY National Series.

After surgery, and while his rivals worked on their craft around the country and indeed the world, Kennedy plotted a comeback with dogged determination that ended with domestic BMX’s ultimate prize.

“This is awesome,” Kennedy said.

“It’s my first year racing in elite and it hasn’t been a great start this year getting injured, but oh, I’m stoked.”

Earlier, hometown town hero Hayden Fletcher, reigning national title holder Brandon Te Hiko, Rio Olympian Bodi Turner and the highly fancied pair of Max Cairns and Matt Krasevskis all crashed out in the carnage that were the semi finals.

Leanna Curtis dominated all three motos required to win her second national women’s elite title, while both Curtis and Kennedy won the DK Bikes Hole Shot award for the first rider out of the first berm in the elite finals.

Matthew Tidswell confirmed he is a star on the rise with a brilliant day of riding that culminated in his maiden Australian title in the junior elite event.

Barnes, who was racing in the junior elite women’s class for the first time, claimed her ninth consecutive national title and has now set her sights on a sixth world title at this year’s world championships in Belgium in July.

Two riders that will join her in Belgium – reigning world champions Kira Hill and Jordan Callum – both added the Australian title to their world crowns by winning the respective 15 years events. For Hill it was a fourth 1A plate in a row, while for Callum it was a second national title this week after winning the 15-16yrs cruiser event on Thursday.

In other events,

  • Abbey Richards claimed the 14yrs girl’s race and world championships finalist Callum Howarth won the corresponding boy’s event. Howarth also picked up his cruiser event three days ago.
  • Paige Harding held off the fast finishing W6 plate of Tahlia Marsh to win the 16yrs girl’s final.
  • Clare McNamara backed up her cruiser title with a win in the 17-24yrs category, beating home 25-29yrs rider Kirsten Dellar in the combined final.
  • McNamara’s win was made all the sweeter just minutes later when her younger brother Rory took out the 16yrs boy’s final.
  • The men’s 17-24 final had to go to a photo finish before confirming James Tait had beaten Joshua Cooke by 42/1000’s of a second.
  • A three way photo was then needed in the next race to split winner James Smith from Aidan Nemet and Dirk Winter.
  • Jacob Sverns took out the 30+ masters event from popular local rider Levi Collins. It was a wonderful result for Collins who had put hundreds of hours into building the Shepparton track that made the championships such a success.

For all today’s RESULTS, click HERE.

Attention now turns to the fourth stage of the 2019 BMXA BAD BOY National Series at Satellite City in Darwin on June 29, with the UCI BMX World Championships set to come alight from July 23-27 in Heusden-Zolder, Belgium.