BMX racing brings hundreds to Eagle
EAGLE – About 240 BMX riders of all ages, along with their families, took to the Eagle County BMX track on Sunday for state series racing.
The track was in tip-top shape for the annual event, which attracted families from both the Front Range and the Western Slope.
A paid pro-am also helped bring some talented Colorado riders to the track; pro rider Kenneth Gustafson came in from Parker to take part in the action, winning $600 in Pro Am competition.
“We don’t get to race a lot, as pros,” he said. “This is the only class you get to race in, at state qualifiers like this one, so in between nationals it’s nice to have these to keep the race momentum moving, and to make some cash on the side.”
‘Best turns I’ve ever riden’
Gustafson said he’s been competing in Eagle since 2016, and while the convenience of the location is nice, it’s the track itself, specifically the asphalt turns, which keeps him coming back.
“These are honestly some of the best turns I’ve ever ridden,” he said.
Former collegiate racer Jarrod Adcock agreed.
“They’re smooth, and they grab really good,” Adcock said.
Roman Diaz, who came in to town from Grand Junction, won the 24-inch cruiser division for 13-year-old division on Sunday.
He said in addition to the turns, the final set of jumps before the finish adds a nice touch to the course.
“The third straight gets a little technical, you have to throw in some actual skills to manual the jumps to get through it,” he said. “It’s fun because it makes you a better rider, because you have to manual a jump to get through it. So if you don’t do that, it’s not pushing yourself.”
While the event is known to bring in a large group of riders, organizers said this year’s event offered a new attraction – free camping, and free gate practice on Saturday night – which also helped bring in overnight guests.
“There were campers everywhere,” said Halsey Lucas, who was working the Eagle Outside booth. “It also helped that we partnered with Crown Mountain BMX, hosting it as a double weekend.”
To get a state number on your BMX bike, you need to race in at least four state series events, like Sunday’s.
The Metz family from Durango traveled over Red Mountain Pass in their 5-hour journey to Eagle, chasing 16 year-old Ryder Metz’s state plate.
Ryder’s dad, Brett Metz, said they’ll be traveling to Colorado Springs next weekend as Ryder needs one more race.
“This and dirt biking makes up our summer travel schedule,” Brett said.