Sunbury BMX riders tune up with a winter workout

Sunbury BMX’s Kyle Sleightholm finished third in the 10 boys event. (Shawn Smits)

By Tara Murray

Sunbury BMX club riders are continuing to enjoy the thrill of racing during the off-season.

They joined competitors from the Bendigo and Ballarat Sebastopol clubs in the first Winter Triple Challenge, with the final event which was held in Sunbury on Saturday.

Overall titles were awarded for the best junior and senior riders and the top club, with age group champions also recognised.

Sunbury’s Josh Bettany said it was good preparation for the riders ahead of some big events.

“Traditional dirt tracks become difficult to maintain and boggy in the wet,” he said.

“Sunbury BMX Club riders, however, are keen to keep their skills and fitness up in readiness for the first state open race meet to be held in August.

“We saw the quiet winter period as an opportunity to hold a tri-series with two other local clubs that are currently rebuilding their club’s membership base and infrastructure.”

Though Sunbury, which is the third biggest BMX club in Victoria, finished the series third, the experience gained was seen as invaluable. For many Sunbury riders it was their first ever event against other clubs.

Bendigo won the overall contest with 12.5 points, while Ballarat Sebastopol finished on 12 points and Sunbury on 11.7 points.

The three clubs were surprised by the high level of attendance and interest in the events, with riders from across the state also entering.

Lucas Hajnal. Picture Shawn Smits.

PHOTO GALLERY:Winter Triple Challenge

Ballarat Sebastopol’s Sienna Richmond and Hunter Simmonds were the joint winners of the overall junior riders of the series, while Bendigo’s Adam Aherne was the senior winner.

More than 100 riders competed in at least two events to qualify for the overall rider of the series awards, including 39 from Sunbury.

The Sunbury riders recorded some good results.

In the Superclass event, Sunbury claimed the top four positions with Rob Slatter winning.

He overtook Damon Hocking in the final round. Michael Ellul and Luca Weber finished third and fourth respectively.

Ben Ackerman won the 17-24 men’s age group,

Mia Fiest (nine girls), Hamish Monaghan (10 boys) and Lincoln Bettany (11 boys) finished second on points in their age groups.

Lucas Hajnal (eight boys) and Kyle Sleightholm (10 boys) finished third in their age groups.

Joseph Borg, Matilda Prest, Archer Watts and Jack Wright all competed in the mini wheelers.

Picture Shawn Smits.