The Greatest Race on Earth: 2015 Grands
After going through 747 motos, twice, and then moving thru eights, quarters, and semis ...it was finally main time at the #2015Grands. And here are you brand new National No.1 Champions for 2015. On behalf of USA BMX members everywhere, and our staff here at HQ, we'd like to congratulate the following riders on successfully reaching the ultimate feat in our sport.
After her ROC win on Friday, Redline's Alise Post wrapped up her 8th career / 2nd consecutive National No.1 title. But even knowing that, Alise wasn't going to slow down any and carried on with her goals and plan to win, as always. In Saturday's mains, she went 1-2-1, only losing once to Caroline Buchanan .
As an amateur, Alise was a 2-time No.1 Champ on both her class bike and cruiser, and then turned Pro and racked up 2 straight No.1 plates in her first two years. Last year, after a 7-year drought filled with the occasional injuries, Alise recaptured the No.1 Pro Woman title and isn't about to let up any time soon.
With less than a year away from the 2016 Rio Olympic games, Post looks to be right on target for medal contention. After her knockout performance in London for the 2012 Olympiad, she will be out to prove herself. And if she races anything like she did in 2015, USA will have high hopes for Gold.
WOW! What a battle it was. Coming into Tulsa, France's Joris Daudet (Chase Bicycles) had the most podiums, seven wins, and was in a 3-way tie in pro points. Joris' teammate, Connor Fields (also with 7 wins) and Redline's Sam Willoughby (8 wins) were the other two in this ultimate 3-way title chase.
After Connor won the ROC race on Friday (with Sam in 2nd and Joris way back in 4th), the U.S. suddenly had high hopes of seeing an American recapture the silver Cup. Sam looked unusually unbeatable and Joris seemed as if he hadn't brought his A-game. But nobody had any idea of what was about to happen.
On Saturday, as expected, Sam, Joris and Connor all made it to the big show - and whoever scored the best (aka "taking the win"), would also win the 2015 Pro title. In the first main, it was all Joris, from start to finish. Had he been laying low all weekend, and saving it until it counted? Or did he just step it up into overdrive and find that extra uumph that was needed to win the USA BMX Championship?Whatever the case may be, Joris went on to pull off three straight wins - going 1-1-1, to become USA BMX's 24th Pro champion.
With this Championship, Joris became the second Frenchman to ever hold the U.S. Pro title (the last time, being Hall of Famer Christophe Leveque, in 1999). Ironically, Leveque is the owner of Chase Bicycles, and is Joris' sponsor.
The announcers call him Dr.Holeshot - and they have good reason to: Becerine has one of the best starts in BMX. Always has, and still today in his mid-30's, probably always will. Coming in to Tulsa with a comfy lead, Cristian just had to play it safe and make the main in order to hoist a 2nd No.1 Vet Pro cup above his head.
Once he'd made the final, the No.1 Cup was just frosting on top of the cake; and Becerine was out to win the #GreatestRaceonEarth. His closest comp in points - #DB44, Derek Betcher, wasn't looking his sharpest and wouldn't challenge the Factory Ssquared rider. Instead, it would be Cristian's good friend and fellow Argentinian, Javi Colombo - last year's No.1 Vet Pro champion, who would keep Cristian honest.
With a 1-1-1 in the finals - just like Joris did, Becerine re-captured his 2nd U.S. Championship. By the time he'd left the River Spirit Expo on Saturday night, it'd be a safe bet that he was already plotting on how to hold on to this title in 2016!
When it came time for the traditional handing-over of the No.1 plate from last year’s Champ, Olivia Armstrong could only hand herself her current 510 Bay Area BMXers plate. Yes, she was last year’s Champ, and along with Alise Post, was one of the only repeat Champions this season.
Hailing from Redmond, Oregon, Armstrong came in to the #2015grands up for both the Girls and Girl Cruiser title. While the 20” title was going to be tough for the newly turned 15 year old, cruiser looked as if it’d be a tad easier this year.
After struggling with nagging injuries and old age, 6-time No.1 Vet Pro Jason Carne$ had finally reclassified back down to the amateur ranks for 2015. When not racing national events, he was usually found and seen at various BMX tracks around the country doing Flight School clinics for the young, old and new riders. And when not at the tracks or nationals, he could probably be found at the nearest 24 Hour Fitness, getting his “pump” on. If you’ve ever seen his bulging biceps, then you’d know what we’re talking about. For a man his age, he’s remained in pretty good stature - and all of us would like to think that racing BMX has something to do with that “fountain of youth.”
As he drove to Tulsa in a mini-van, only 1 point shy of point leader Jud Ciancio, Carne$ knew that the competition would be tough. The title would obviously come down to either 41-45 cruiser (his class) or Jud’s 46-50 group. Once motos were posted, Jud’s mid-40’s class wound up with more rider-count than the early-40’s ranks. After winning his final, Carne$ could only wait and watch from the finishline podium to see what his fate may be. If Jud won his main, the Hyper racer/employee would take the title. But thanks to Utah’s human-version of a muscle car - Todd Parry, who was making his Kuwahara debut at The Grands, Jud would be pushed back to 2nd place and that meant ...the Cup was all Jason’s.
With a big smile and a fist in the air, Redline’s TM and cool Clinic instructor, would score a 7th Cup for his collection.
Throughout the history of BMX Racing, we have seen some mighty fine representatives for our sport win the National No.1 Amateur cup. But perhaps none more so deserving as Haro~Promax’s Kevin Pauls. Hailing from Simi valley, and racing since a young age - often in contention for the title by always coming up short, Pauls became this year’s No.1 Amateur in thrilling fashion, with his triumphant win in 16x.
By day, Kevin Pauls is an honor roll student taking AP classes with a 4.0 GPA, at Santa Susana High School in Simi Valley, CA. By night, he is one of the hardest working ams in the BMX business. After coming so close, so many times, his new No.1 Amateur title is the results of years of hard work, perseverance and triumph.
It could be said that Utah’s Sophia Foresta is a cycling phenom. For she not only can go super fast on a 20” or 24” BMX bike, but she can also rip it up on a 27.5” mountain bike. Sponsored by GT Bicycles, Sophia has the full support to rack up plenty of wins and titles - and splits her time between the two bicycling disciplines.
After taking her first National No.1 title back in 2012 - becoming the first Utah rider in BMX history to win a National No.1 Cup, she rode a perfect race in the 2015 main event at this year’s Grands to caprture her 2nd USA BMX Championship.