GoPro Mountain Games event was not your ordinary night of racing at Eagle County BMX
EAGLE — GoPro Mountain Games organizers approached Eagle County BMX about an event crossover — the idea was to get some pros on the track.
Track founder Jay Lucas loved the idea, but also had another thought.
“We wanted to make sure we included the kids in the (Mountain Games),” Lucas said.
The Eagle County BMX track opened in 2010 and has turned Monday nights into a community experience in Eagle. The regular Monday night races are part of the USA BMX circuit. Competitors come out to the track and attempt to earn points toward the season-long series, which culminates every year in late November at the Grand Nationals championship event. If a competitor enters a lot of events, then they give themselves the best chances at earning a prestigious plate for their bikes, indicating a top ranking.
“If you’re chasing points and you want that plate on your bicycle to have a No. 1 on it, or a No. 2 on it, you got to go to a lot of races,” Lucas said. “And you gotta do double points races.”
As part of the GoPro Mountain Games on Friday, June 8, the Eagle County BMX track hosted a double points USA BMX race, in addition to a Pro-Am competition.
Eagle resident Evelyn Steinberg, 9, comes out to the track every Monday. Her mother, Amy Zak, said the atmosphere at the weekly races is great for kids like Evelyn.
“We’re all here to cheer each other on, and it’s like one big family out here,” Zak said.
After Steinberg’s race — which was attended by both her mother and her grandmother — the family stayed to watch the pros, cheering on locals Isabella Sargent and Bjørn Bredesen. Sargent went on to make the podium in the Pro-Am.
Bredesen, who grew up racing the Eagle County BMX track before racing at the collegiate level for Colorado Mesa University, said the competition in the pros race was tight.
“It was a pretty tough race,” Bredesen said. “There were lots of pros, and there was a big crowd out here so it was awesome.”
Doublecross Bikes rider Kenny Gustufson, of Parker, won the men’s race. Gustufson said the big crowd made the event even more exciting.
“There’s a ton of fans, which is not the norm for a BMX race, so I’m pretty pumped,” he said.
Gustufson said when he heard the Mountain Games were incorporating BMX into the program for the first time ever this year, he knew he had to get involved.
“GoPro stepped up and put up some big money,” Gustufson said.
It came down to a showdown between Gustufson and Tyler Faoro, who finished second. Walker Finch took third.
“The track is awesome, freshly paved turns, tons of riders, good competition, beautiful weather, I couldn’t ask for much more,” Finch said. “It’s my first time attending but I’ll definitely be back.”
On the women’s side, Alaina Henderson finished first, Addison Finch took second and Sargent finished in third.
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