The second annual USA Cycling BMX National Championships are slated for Saturday, March 29 in Desoto, Texas. Several top hopefuls in the newest Olympic sport will compete for a national title and for points to qualify for the BMX squad that will be headed to Beijing in August.
Along with the elite level stars, BMX athletes from age five and up will battle for the stars-and-stripes jersey in both the challenge and cruiser classes as well as the chance to qualify for the team that will represent the United States at the BMX World Challenge in Taiyuan, China in late May.
Several of the world's top BMX athletes are scheduled to compete, including the number-two ranked rider in the world and current USA Cycling BMX Rankings points leader, Kyle Bennett. Donny Robinson, the number-four ranked rider in the international standings, will be back to defend his 2007 national title while U.S. Olympic training center resident Mike Day will try to move up from his current third-place position in the USA Cycling BMX Rankings.
The 2005 UCI world champion, Bubba Harris will also be on hand as he continues his comeback, adding depth to a strong elite men's field.
On the women's side, the current USA Cycling BMX Rankings points leader, former ABA BMX World Champion and multiple-time UCI 4-cross Mountain Bike World Champion Jill Kintner will be looking to continue her quest for Olympic gold, along with Arielle Martin.
Martin, the silver medalist at the 2006 UCI BMX World Championships, is in a very close second in the points chase and is ranked eighth in the world. Currently the top American woman in the 2008 UCI BMX Rankings, 18 year-old Amanda Geving will compete for the coveted stars-and-stripes jersey along with fellow Olympic Training Center resident and long-time BMX champion Kim Hayashi.
The USA Cycling BMX National Championships is the 14th of 17 women's races, and the 16th of 19 races on the men's side that factor into the 2008 USA Cycling BMX Rankings, the primary factor which determines the Olympic Long Team for the 2008 Games in Beijing.
The USA Cycling BMX National Championships also provide an opportunity for "Challenge Class" amateurs of all ages to qualify for the team that will represent the United States at the BMX World Challenge in Taiyuan, China in late May.
© BikeRadar & USA Cycling 2008