The first two rounds of the 2019 UCI BMX Supercross World Cup are rapidly approaching and Australia’s 2018 elite men’s national champion is ready to take on the world’s best.
Coming hot off his 2018 success, Geelong’s Brandon Te Hiko is ready to throw himself into 2019’s world cup with the first two rounds this coming weekend (April 27-28) in Manchester, United Kingdom.
Winning the elite men’s title at the national championships in Bunbury last year, Te Hiko proceeded to compete in rounds two, three and four of the 2018 world cup, ending the season placed 69th out of 146 participants.
The 21-year-old has taken to 2019 with a newfound mind set and has been happy with his results so far, including a second place at the Oceania Championships, and a first place in one of the two superclass rounds at the Sydney BMX Club during the first stage of the 2019 BMXA BAD BOY National Series.
“2019 so far has been pretty good,” Te Hiko explained.
“I started off with a second place at the Oceania’s and from there I’ve just been focusing on training instead of racing. Last year I spent a lot of time on racing, but because of all the big races this year, my training has been the priority.
“I think I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been in and thanks to my coaches Luke Madill and Danny Kolsky, I’m much more confident especially on the 8 metre start hills.
“I think my win in Sydney during the first stage of the national series was a massive booster coming into Manchester. I wasn’t feeling the sharpest as I was trying to train and peak for these world cup rounds, and the fact I won while not being in the best form was great for my confidence.”
A couple months on from that result and Te Hiko will be lining up on the gate this weekend with the likes of the world’s best riders such as Dutchmen Niek Kimmann and Joris Harmsen, Frenchmen Sylvain Andre and Joris Daudet as well as the host nation’s Kye Whyte.
Even though the world’s best will be alongside Te Hiko as the gates drop, the Victorian’s focus will be on his own processes and the days of being star struck are well behind him.
“The aim is always to win… that’s with every rider,” Te Hiko said.
“I’m coming into Manchester feeling pretty nice and relaxed. This race is a process and in order to get the results I want, I just have to go through the process.
“A few years ago, I definitely felt a bit in awe of those big names. But now when I look at it, I think that they’re just another competitor. At the end of the day, BMX is a pretty tough sport, and anything can happen.”
Representing Australia alongside Te Hiko in the men’s elite class are more than half a dozen of the country’s top competitors including Rio Olympian Anthony Dean, Kai Sakakibara, Hayden Fletcher, Jye Hombsch, Matt Krasevskis, Joshua McLean and Shane Rosa.
Leading the way will be Dean and Sakakibara after their strong results in last years’ world cup series. Dean finished the year on 445 points in eighth position while Sakakibara ended his year on 360 points in twelfth.
Action commences this weekend at 11pm AEST on April 27 with the early rounds before the main event begins at 1am AEST on Sunday morning.
Round two launches at 10pm on Sunday evening with the main event expected to start at midnight.
Keep an eye on BMXA’s social media platforms as we share the live streaming of the event closer the to the date.