With less than a week to go until the 2017 UCI BMX World Championships gets underway we asked some veteran Worlds goers what their favourite World Champs have been in the past and why.
1-Brazil, Sau Paulo 2006
My first big trip outside Europe, Few days partying in Rio with Marco, Wild Man & Jason Carnes before.
Always dreamed of making a final & managed to do so and came away W4. Was the best feeling ever!
Spent a couple of great days in Beijing beforehand, did the sight seeing. We rode bikes down Tiananmen Square, trip up to the great Wall & summer palace.
Whole trip was a total culture shock but still one of my favourite trips, Oh and bagged W3 & W5
3-South Africa, 2010
1st year of Zelltours was a great trip with a great crowd, again we had a few days in Durban before the race. Big part of all these trips is seeing the world, visiting new places, having a laugh with mates.
Racing was good, track was great and some of the best food I’ve ever eaten.
Mixed results but Got W7 on Cruiser.
For myself I love an indoor worlds, people moan about the short track & expense etc. but the conditions are always perfect & atmosphere is amazing.
Rotterdam was a cool city & the track was not crazy but start hill was steep which I managed to get my head around.
Had some of my best races of all time, was never in the hunt but made stuff happen all day. My best result to date W2 (4 brits in final was awesome)
I think one of the most physically demanding tracks I’ve rode but was good to ride a track built for the amateurs with no 1st turn aimed at pro straight.
As a common theme to all these trips we hit up Miami for a few days 1st on another Zelltours trip. Everyone that went had a great time.
Racing was great, track was too, atmosphere amazing, Columbia was a great place to visit.
I had one of my most satisfying results too as the competition was really tough but I managed it again on the line with a photo finish in the semi. W3
I think the best thing about all the trips over the years is where the Bike has taken us, riding through different city’s all over the world, seeing new places & hanging out with mates!
I’ve been lucky enough to grab a few W plates too!
1. Vallett France 1999. First world’s for me. Won my Motos. Maid the main and jumped a bunch of stuff.
2. Valkenswaard 2004. Had the world champ in all my laps. Great memories, on and off the track.
3. Paris 2005. Bercy indoor. Made the main again, but Rupe had me and the rest beat in the pens.
4. Copenhagen 2011. Flew in late. 6 laps practice on the day of the race. Done massive Rimmer’s on the first jump.
5. Birmingham 2012. Came out the 1st turn screaming “It’s the holeshot” in the the Motos. Got plenty of autographs including Bennett. De-Wilde, Stevenson, Harris, Daudet and Willoughby were the 5 Elite winners. Got see Allier, Leveque and Soto in their prime amount others. Also watched Winnie make the world main and Indri battle. I got a few stories that would make your toes curl up, but what goes on at the world’s, stays at the world’s.
Ps. Although I didn’t mention 2014 worlds, it was probs my best spectator moment. Me and Jools watched Mike Gough win. Then we hugged each other and cried. Xxx
1. Bercy , atmosphere was electric and the racing was off the hook! Paris an awesome place to hold a race.
2. China. The place was amazing and the people even more so. Racing was great totally awesome experience.
3. Vancouver British Columbia The best place in the world, track was awesome, junior men main possibly the best race ever,
4. South Africa. Again a truly fantastic country, great venue, great racing great memories, some big crashes, making lifelong friends.
5. Birmingham, closest worlds ever, great atmosphere, great racing, great results,
Great city, great memories.
1 – 2012 worlds Birmingham, first worlds win at my 2nd every world championships on home turf2 – 2015 worlds Zolder, won for the 2nd time and felt so amazing! Track was running fast and nice weather!3 – Copenhagen 2011 worlds, first ever world champs and finished 4th. Hadn’t really raced many races out of England so was super pleased with how it went!4 – Columbia 2016 worlds, really fast track and good weather! Finished 2nd which I was slightly disappointed with as I was no.1 but extremely pleased with the consistency of making another podium. Lovely place and such welcoming people!5 – 2014 worlds, Rotterdam. Really class fun track, loved the layout of the track! Crashed in the main on the first jump and was gutted, but it was positive it was another main event!!
I love the worlds. Absolutely one of the best events in BMX, the international friendships that have been made are incredible and to take a 20″ bicycle and have it be the catalyst to travel around the world is amazing.1. Medallin, Colombia 2016. Earning a W2 plate was pretty Rad. The people were so generous, the city was amazing, paragliding over the mountain tops with zero instruction is something I will never forget. Traveled with one of my good friends Ethan there. Great food, crazy traffic, awesome track, and a ton of South American hospitality made the trip amazing.2. Auckland, New Zealand 2013. Had a pit stop in Sydney, Australia and got to tour a bit. They were having a coffee festival by the Opera house so I was in my happy place. GT hooked me up with a full house that sat on a hill with an amazing view. The track was good, crashed in both semis. Watching my little brother Sean Gaian win Jr men was a feeling on a different level.3. Rotterdam, Holland 2014. First year coaching for Team USA. Earned a W4 plate, could have bettered that had I not freaked out after snapping the main event and shocking myself while briefly ahead of Kelvin Batey. Should have cut him off. Great to become friends with him. Coached Bubba Gonzalez to a resilient win in 16 boys. Coached the USA Elite and Jrs, walked way too much and was spent.4. Copenhagen, Denmark 2011. Spent way too much money on food. Racing was great, crashed in both semis again. Watch the 17-24 men dutch kid pre pull the triple step into the first turn, mind blowing, he then drank Jack Daniels at the finish line. Sitting in downtown Copenhagen with Jason Carnes, Dale Holmes, and Steven Larralde drinking coffee and listening to Larralde talk about how he ws going to win. He did.
5. Zolder, Belgium 2015. Blew my knee out, resulting in an 9 month hiatus from racing. Coached for team USA again. Gimped around and took care of Collin Hudson as he went to a 2nd place in Jr men. Raced a semi with a blown knee, went into turn one in 2nd, didn’t come out of turn one. US medics carried me out of the medic tent when the Belgian medics turned their backs. Receiving a gift package from my brother from Great Britain with a number 1 plate, pulled at the heart strings.
—“Its better to be hated for what you are, than loved for what you’re not.” -Rev Run
1. Rotterdam 2014 – My 2nd win was an unexpected one after being out injured for 6 months. I raced with a torn rotator cuff and couldn’t lift the trophy over my head on the podium.
2. Copenhagen 2011 – My first win and a typical battle with Richard Van Zomeren, good to see my buddy Bob Van Westerop on the podium too.
3. Bercy 2005 – My first worlds main, the noise, lights and atmosphere was amazing.
4. Sau Paulo 2006 – Great trip with Ben Forewood to a crazy country, nearly won 20” and an awesome afterparty!
5. Taiyuan 2008 – Track was good and practice was so laid back sessioning the straights. Interesting commute each day with Mark Seaman and I made both mains.
1. Australia 2009 – My 1st win on Cruiser
2. South Africa 2010 – winning 20″ Elite Masters -Fun Zell Tours trip, being in Africa was cool.
3. Brazil 2002 – First trip to South America solo.. Amazing experience, atmosphere and went to Rio for the first time after the race for a couple of nights on my own.
4. Brazil 2006 – Partied in Rio for 3 nights with Todd Lyons, Jason Carnes , Andy Shaw before heading to Sao Paulo. I sucked at the race but loved this trip. The Elite final was awesome too.
5. Colombia 2016 – For me any trip to South America makes it more exciting. Zell Tours crew was fun, lots of laughs and memories. Seeing Mariana win in front of her hometown fans actually bought a tear to my eye! – Loved Colombia in general.