Many of Victoria’s best BMX riders will battle for supremacy at the Bendigo Gold Rush on Sunday.
The Bendigo BMX Club’s biggest event is expected to attract more than 200 riders to the Victoria Street track in Eaglehawk on Sunday.
Last year’s cruiser class world champion Jaclyn Wilson headlines the local talent vying for the prizes, while a number of up-and-coming young stars are good chances to feature on the podium.
Kailen O’Grady has been in superb form in the 10-year-old boys’ class, while Sam O’Grady, Tyler Sturt and Will Oliver are other hopes.
Sisters Rhian and Meleia Hobbs commonly upstage their male counterparts and, along with Briana Eyles, will be right in contention on Sunday.
Practice for the event will be from 3pm to 5pm on Saturday, as well as from 8am to 10am on Sunday, before the first race at 10.30am.
“We’ve got a local event on Saturday, so it’s a whole weekend,” Bendigo BMX Club president Brett Hobbs said.
“We’ve got a race meeting from 12.30pm, from 4pm we’ve got face painting, a spit-roast dinner and kids’ games out here as well.
“On the Sunday, practice kicks off from 8am. It’s all classes from under-5 to 40-and-over. We’ve also got the elite women and men racing as well.”
Hobbs encouraged interested spectators to come along to see the thrills of top-class BMX racing up close.
“Obviously, it’s a really good spectator sport and we’re bringing the best from around the state, so this is a really good chance to see what it’s all about,” he said.
● Meanwhile, students can get a taste of the exhilirating action for themselves when Bendigo hosts the north zone final of the Victorian Schools Cycling Championships next Wednesday.
The event is open to school students aged nine or over and has expert and novice categories.
Cycling Victoria’s BMX manager Chris Ball called for interested students to have a go.
“It’s a great opportunity for students to be introduced to the sport and to test themselves against others from their own age groups in a supportive and fun environment,” he said.
The north zone final also incorporates a “bring a buddy” program, which encourages licensed riders to bring an un-licensed friend for the chance to win a new GT BMX bike.
Footage from the event will be aired on SBS’ Cycling Central after the state final in Knox on October 24.
The Bendigo event will start at 9.15am, with novice riders able to take part in coaching clinics to prepare for action on the track before racing begins at 11am.
Details can be found at vic.cycling.org.au. For more information, contact Chris Ball on 8480 3000.