BMX Carolina nationals sets stage for world competition to be held in Rock Hill this May

BMX Carolina nationals sets stage for world competition to be held in Rock Hill this May

ROCK HILL, S.C. (CHARLOTTE SPORTS LIVE) — When you think of Rock Hill, South Carolina, you probably think of football. With 20+ active players in the NFL that hail from this city, it makes sense.

But what I bet you don’t think about is BMX.

“Olympic spots are on the line, as well as some spots on the world’s team,” said Justin Wahl, the lead photographer and social media manager at BMX.

This weekend, Rock Hill is the center of BMX, with the supercross track hosting the Carolina Nationals, with pro and amateur racers from around the world getting a feel for the course before the world competition to be held here later this spring.

“That is a big race because if you place in the top 3, you’re automatically selected for the Olympic team,” remarked pro-racer Kamren Larsen.

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Larsen is the top racer in the United States, is currently ranked 8th in the world and is hopeful to be heading to his first Olympics this summer.

“This is my first full cycle, so I’m really excited for this one,” said Larsen. “It’s given me the extra push that I need to, yeah, try to compete at my first Olympics.”

While Paris had to wait a century to host the summer games again, Rock Hill only had to wait six years and will become the first repeat location since the event’s inception in 1996.

“This is a big hill track,” says Justin Wahl. “We don’t have a lot of those around the country so this is a main hub for these BMX racers.”

Amateur racer Alexis Alden, 16, can confirm.

“It’s so amazing to have something [on] home turf,” says Alden. “Last year in Scotland, it was so weird driving on the wrong side of the road so it’s just way more comfortable . . . I really love this track . . . it’s one of my favorites ever.”

Competition for this weekend wraps up Sunday morning but this is just the precursor to the main event when the BMX World Championships are held here in mid-May.

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