Schwalbe British 4X Series Round 5 & 6 – Falmouth

Rounds 5 and 6 of the 2019 Schwalbe British 4X Series took place in Falmouth, Cornwall last weekend. After, lets say a very challenging season, team rider Scott Beaumont, although still recovering from his major thumb injury, was starting to feel good on the bike again and he was showing some signs of good speed once again.

A strong 4th last week at 4X ProTour in Poland was seriously impressive and coming into this weekend he wanted to continue his return to form.

Arriving on Friday Scott began his weekend with a practice session on the track. Over the years this track has been very good to Scott and straight away he looked comfortable on the track. A good evening of food and it was time for bed in the team Dethleffs truck.

Saturday – Round 5:

The weather was perfect and Scott was clearly in the mood. A good practice session and some gates that looked perfect and he was ready to race.

In his 3 qualifying races, he took the holeshot in each one and simply checked out. He was looking good and focused for the semi final. In the semi final he chose gate 1. Again made a great start and sealed his final place with a big win.

Onto the final. Again chasing his favoured gate 1. The beeps went and Scott fired out of the gate. Leading through turn 1, he went tight in turn 2 to hold the inside line. He powered out of turn 2 and nailed the log section before launching the pro line doubles. He was pulling away with every pedal stroke. Across the finish line Scott had built a good lead and took the win.

Scott’s last 4 weeks have been an absolute rollercoaster of emotions and pain. At round 5 he looked relaxed and fast. Although still far from 100% he rode really, really well.

Sunday – Round 6:

Sunday and again we woke to blue skies and a perfect day for racing. The track had a few changes for Sundays race which would really spice up the racing. 

The same format for Sunday with 3 qualifying races to start the day. Scott won his first 2 races comfortably. In his third race he was bar banging through the first turn. It was some classic 4X action and it was good to see Scott feeling good on the bike again and racing hard. Scott held strong and took the win.

Into the final and Scott chose gate 1. Making a perfect start Scott was again going bar to bar on the first straight. It was entertaining for the crowd but Scott fought for the position and took the holeshot into turn 1. From here Scott rode a perfect lap and continued to extend his lead all the way to the finish. 

Out of 9 races through the weekend, Scott won every one of them. He looked strong and somewhere back towards his best after an horrific year of major injuries.

“I felt great on the bike all weekend and it feels even better to have taken the wins on both days. These result have now put me in mathematical contention for the overall title and I am excited to head to the series finals to see what we can achieve.”

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The teams next event will be the cycle show at Birmingham and then our next race the Schwalbe British 4X Series finals in Redhill, Gloucestershire in a few weeks.

Thank you again to all our sponsors for your support in 2019. We will see you all at the Cycle Show.

The final round of the 2019 4X ProTour was held in a town called Szczawno Zdroj (pronounced Sch-av-no Stroy) in Poland.

The track in Szczawno Zdroj is in south west Poland is widely regarded as one of the finest 4X tracks in the world. In the heart of the city, it is the pride of the town, lined by hedgerows and trees. At around 40 seconds long, there is a mix of high and low speed, technical and huge jumps. There is something to suit all the riders and the racing is always amazing. Scott arrived on Wednesday in the team’s Dethleffs motorhome so that he could take his time practicing the track over the next couple of days whilst he still recovered from his thumb injury that was sustained less than 3 weeks ago. The immaculately prepared track looked perfect.

Scott did some light practice on Wednesday and again on Thursday as the weather forecast predicted rain on Friday. Immediately you could tell this was one of Scott’s favourite tracks. He was flowing well and jumping all the big doubles looking much more comfortable on the bike than he did 2 weeks ago at World Championships in Italy.

Saturday morning rolled around and the race day schedule began with practice. Knowing just how physical this track is, Scott worked to a plan and restricted his practice to just 40 minutes to save vital energy for the racing.
After practice there was a small break for the riders meeting and then it was time for qualifying. The most exciting but nerve wrecking time in 4X. Riders get just one lap of qualifying. Any mistakes and it is time to head home.

Scott was one of the last riders to qualify. His start was on point and he laid down a great run. A coupe of tiny mistakes but aside from that it was a perfect run. Crossing the finish line it would place Scott 4th.

On to the racing. Scott won his early rounds and looked comfortable out on the track. In the quarter final he again made a great start and won the race start to finish. In his semi final, Scott took gate 2, Tomas Slavik in 1, Stefano Dolphin in 3 and Denny Tischendorf in 4. and Scott made a great start and sat in 2nd all the way to the finish line.

Scott was ecstatic to make the final. Again defying all the odds and doctors advice he was chasing a great overall position in the 2019 series.
In the final it was the top 4 riders from qualifying who made it all the way to the final. Qualifying 4th it meant Scott was on the outside. The gate dropped and Scott grabbed the holeshot. He was flying down the first straight and looked like he was on for the win, until the rider in gate 3 tagged him going into turn 1 and forced Scott off the track. It was a racing incident but left Scott with no where to go and unfortunately he had to limp down in 4th. It was a cruel end to his night but the fantastic news was that Scott had done enough to finish 3rd overall in the 2019 4X ProTour.

“You know this feels like a win. I know I said that 2 weeks ago at Worlds but to be competitive here tonight and really have a shot at winning the race feels incredible. I still have some major problems with my thumb but I am thankful that in a year that has been effected so much by injury I have been able to finish 3rd overall in the 4X World Series. I am stoked. Thank you to my family, friends, all my sponsors and everyone who has taken the time to message me in the last few tough weeks. I think this result is something to be incredibly proud of and I couldn’t have done it without the support from everyone. Cheers.” Scott was clearly emotional in the finish area but could not stop saying thank you to everyone.

It was straight to the podium for the awards ceremony and then the long drive back home.

It is still no rest for Scott. In just 7 days we go again in Falmouth for rounds 5 and 6 of the 2019 Schwalbe British 4X Series. Thankfully after that he has a couple of weeks off!!!

2019 UCI 4X World Championships: Val Di Sole, Italy

As many of you will already know, it has been a very rough 2 weeks for team rider Scott Beaumont.  Everything was looking perfect at the UCI BMX World Championships in Zolder, Belgium. Winning throughout the qualifying races and looking very comfortable until the semi final where the rider next to him lost control on the take off for a jump and caused Scott to crash heavily.

The resulting injury was severe. An open fracture dislocation of his right thumb. For those unsure what that means, it’s the full set. A dislocated thumb, a broken bone and the bone then sticking out of the skin. It was a pretty horrific sight that needed an immediate operation to save the thumb. After two hours in an operating theatre, the operation was a success.

He needed to spend two days in hospital on anti biotics to fight the risk of infection and then he could return home.

On arrival back to the UK, Scott went straight to see his doctor who confirmed that he was looking at twelve weeks off the bike. He went to hospital who also agreed that it needed time off the bike, but concluded that in six weeks something might be possible. This was music to everyones ears. Scott was adamant though. 99.8% of his body was ready for 4X World Championships which would take place 7 days after the injury in Italy.

After lots of discussion, weighing up the pros and cons, we all decided the risk was worth the reward. The Dethleffs team truck was loaded and we set off for Italy on Tuesday night. 

Val Di Sole:

Arriving on Thursday morning after the long drive the team had just a few hours to make adjustments to the bike to try and make it more comfortable for Scott. His gear shifter was moved and adapted, sponge added to his grip and fork raised a little to take some pressure off his thumb. Then just two hours after arriving, it was practice time. Scott had two hours to dial in the track and then go to qualifying straight afterwards.

In his practice Scott was understandably slow and careful but lap after lap he began to jump some of the jumps and gain speed. By the end of practice he looked pretty good and the goal of simply qualifying looked possible.

With just one lap to qualify, Scott could not afford any mistakes. The gate dropped and Scott set off on his run. Vitally he jumped all the jumps including two 30 foot double jumps. Crossing the finish line he was understandably slower than normal with a time that would eventually place him 15th. To be honest the team were ecstatic. He had finished much higher than he thought he would and he was in the main show on Friday night.

Race Night:

Friday began with an hour of practice so riders could dial in their race lines – normally different from the fast qualifying lines. Scott was as ready as he could be. 

In his first race he lined up against three fast guys. It wasn’t the toughest race he has ever had and on another night without the injury he would not have been concerned at all, but this wasn’t a normal night.

He had second lane pick, which gave him gate two. On the inside was the second fastest qualifier, but he felt confident he could get the better of him. The gate dropped and Scott’s start was ok – the best he could do. he was bar banging with the guys in gate one and three as they went off the first drops. It got pretty aggressive and Scott simply pulled the brakes. You could see the nerves. He slipped into third in turn one and set off in chase. A long story short, hats off to the two riders ahead of Scott because he tried everything and just couldn’t make a pass stick. He crossed the finish line in third and unfortunately his night would end early. This gave him 17th overall in the World Championships.

Scott said:

“I simply could not crash. Every doctor we saw was adamant. A crash this soon after my surgery would be extremely bad for my thumb and hand. We were bumping on the first straight and whilst I normally would have battled through that and come out leading, today I was not prepared to do it. I’ve pushed the limits so much this week and I wasn’t prepared to go all the way to the limit racing those guys tonight.

I have mixed emotions. I am ecstatic. We did what was deemed impossible. Simply riding a bike. Let alone riding a bike in the way we do. However when the gate drops we always know what’s possible and on this occasion I just didn’t race 100%. I am happy but frustrated if that makes sense.”

Thankfully Scott now gets two weeks off to rest and repair before the next round of 4X ProTour in Poland. 

The team just want to praise the effort Scott has gone to this week. It was nothing short of superhuman. No one believed it was possible, but Scott did and we think the achievement is pretty incredible.

Our team edit from the race will be live mid week too so we will send it to you all when it’s ready.

Till then,

Ciao from Italy.

USN Racing 2019 – UCI BMX World Championships

Well. Where to start. 

Scott Beaumont’s goal for 2019 was to win the BMX and 4X World Championships in the same year. Something that has never been done before.

What unfolded was not in the plan.

The race took place on Friday 26th July at the UCI BMX World Championships. Scott went unbeaten in his qualifying races. He was on fire.

In his quarter final he again made a great start but got a bit caught up in turn one. It was a challenging race for Scot but at the line he did enough to transfer to the semi final. It highlighted just how delicate BMX racing is and the smallest mistake can lose so much time.

In the semi final, whilst Scott was in second, another rider lost control on the takeoff of the double jump on the second straight and hit Scott side on. The resulting crash was unbelievable. Thrown like a rag doll it was a huge crash. Medics were quickly with Scott and treating him on the track.

He was then rushed to the medical centre onsite. The injury Scott sustained was an open fracture, dislocation of his right thumb. His entire thumb joint was hanging out. It was truly gruesome. The doctors on site tried to put the dislocation back into place but with no luck. They then administered local anaesthetic and tried again. In agony Scott was desperate for the dislocation to go back in. It wouldn’t. So it was straight into an ambulance and with lights on straight to hospital.

Scott was rushed through for x rays. Then the doctors administered further local anaesthetic to try and get the bones back in place. At this stage his thumb was starting to turn black from all the bleeding and swelling. They were unable to get it back in. Scott nearly blacked out on the bed. With all the pulling, hi thumb joint was now even more exposed and so the forms were quickly signed by Scott’s fiance Holly and he was rushed into the operating theatre. There was a 50/50 chance of Scott losing his thumb at this stage.

2 hours later and the operation was a success. The thumb joint back in place, colour restored to his thumb and the very real threat of having his thumb removed was now reduced. 

Due to the thumb joint being exposed for so long, Scott then had to stay in hospital for 48 hours whist anti bionics were administered through a drip to try and combat the high risk of infection.

On Sunday afternoon Scott was discharged and the team drove straight back home.

On Monday morning Scott met up with his doctor to work out a plan. It started with going straight to hospital for a fresh x ray, re dressing and examination. The 2 doctors on Monday agreed that Scott would need 12 weeks to recover from this injury. A trip to Core Clinics afterwards filled him with more hope. Some work on his hand to reduce the swelling was the starting point.

On Tuesday, Scott headed straight to another doctor to seek out an alternative diagnosis. Starting every conversation with each doctor by saying on Thursday I have qualifying for the 2019 UCI 4X World Championships maybe wasn’t doing him any favours. However. By Tuesday afternoon he had a doctor saying that by racing this weekend in Italy, the risk of infection in the joint wouldn’t particularly increase and that in 9 weeks he could start training again. When asked if it was even remotely possible to race this weekend he said no. The pain would be too much. Another trip to Core Clinics and some positive talk.

Leaving Core Clinics, Scott was clear. He wanted to try riding his bike to see just how much pain he would be in and what adjustments he could make to his bike. 

He had a roll around, did a couple of wheelies. Stopped. Looked at the bike and was constantly thinking. You could see the cogs turning.

A long story short. We are now travelling through Europe in our Dethleffs motorhome. 

4X ProTour Round 2 – JBC, Czech Republic

Round 2 of the 2019 4X ProTour took place in JBC Bikepark in Jablonec Nad Nisou in Czech Republic.

An incredible facility that continues to showcase the very finest that 4X racing has to offer.

The drive to JBC took about 22 hours but it is so worth it. Easy in the Dethleffs motorhome though….

Our parking spot at Jablonec is next to the start at the top of a mountain that overlooks the city. It is an incredible view and makes our 3 days there perfect. Next morning it was breakfast on our terrace and a walk of the track.

This track isn’t one of Scott’s favourites but he was feeling confident. That evening it was the welcome party for the athletes with a BBQ on the lake, music and talk of the weekends racing.

On Thursday it was practice session one. Scott rode well and looked good on track. That evening it was the official plate awarding ceremony in town where the top riders are interviewed and presented with their race number for the weekend.

Friday and it was time to qualify. Scott unfortunately made a mistake in the woods section and it cost him dearly. 15th was poor but it was just qualifying and Scott would fight on the next day.

Saturday and 14,000 spectators flooded the hillside. Red Bull air race planes did acrobatics overhead and the atmosphere was electric. The riders were introduced to the fans. Scott was ready to race.

In his first heat he took the win and looked comfortable.

In his second heat, due to his poor qualifying he was left with the outside gate. He made a good start and dived inside in turn one. He bumped another rider which caused him to run wide in turn two.

He lost a lot of time and unfortunately went out in this heat. He was gutted but was happy with his riding. 

From here it was on to Zolder in Belgium for the UCI BMX World Championships.

USN Racing 2019 – HSBC BMX National Series Round 9 & 10

Scott Beaumont:
HSBC British BMX Series Round 9 – 6th
HSBC British BMX Series Round 10 – 2nd

Quite a strange race report to write as just a week after a big crash at the 2019 4X National Championships, Scott was back racing again. Most disagreed with this idea, but Scott wanted to get another race in before the 2019 BMX World Championships in just 3 weeks time.

Scott is still in a lot of pain and his back is still not fixed. We were all aware that racing this weekend was going to be tough, however Scott felt that racing would help his recovery.

We arrived at the Glasgow on Friday and what a venue it is. Home to the 2023 BMX World Championships, the track is huge. Big jumps, massive corners and long straights. On a normal weekend this track would have been perfect, but this was not a normal weekend.

There was a short practice session on Friday evening and Scott enjoyed getting to grips with the track. Thankfully the forecast rain stayed away and we were all set for the weekend.

Round 9:

Round 9 on Saturday began with a short practice session and then 3 qualifying races. In his qualifying races Scott finished 3rd, 1st and 2nd which he was very happy with. The main problem however was that he simply could not start. The pain in his lower back from last weeks crash was really causing him problems.

In the final he chose gate 5 hoping to give himself a little bit of space so that he could concentrate on his own race. The gate dropped and Scott just could not pedal. He pulled up down the start hill and rolled around to take 6th.

Afterwards he said:

“I made the start and it was just too painful to pedal. I’m gutted because I know on a normal day I could have won this race. But this is not a normal day and we have to keep working to be ready for World Championships. Tomorrow is a fresh day and tonight we will work on my back to try again.”

A night of ice, heat patches and rest to prepare for Sunday.

Round 10:

Sunday and again it was blue skies and perfect conditions. Again there was a short practice session before the three qualifying races. Scott was clearly struggling as he wasn’t jumping all the jumps during practice. He came back to the Dethleffs team truck and immediately started his stretching routine to try and release the tension in his back.He went out for the first race and actually felt a little better. He rode well and finished 2nd. He then backed it up with 3rd and 2nd in his other 2 races to qualify for the final.

Final:

In the final he had a complete change of plan and elected for gate 8 – the outside. A brave move normally but on this occasion a vital one. Due to his back damage he can’t accelerate very well due to the intense pressures on his lower back but once up to speed the pain reduces. So he elected for gate 8 so he could come out of the gate and then have the space to get going and hopefully put a good lap in.

The gate dropped and Scott was in the hunt. Once he wound the gearing up he really started charging on the first straight and into turn 1 he sat 3rd. Then on the next straight he positioned himself perfectly and made his move into 2nd in turn 2. From there he sat on the leader back wheel, unable to make the pass but crossing the finish line he was very happy with the race.

“You know, I shouldn’t even be here. I have been in agony all weekend but I believe that it has been the right thing to do. The BMX and 4X World Championships are just a few weeks away and we have to push hard now. I want to thank Stefaan Vossen at Core Clinics as he is the reason I have made it onto the start today. We gained vital points and I’m hoping now we can get a good season result in the BMX National Series. Now we have a week and a half to continue working and to get my back better. My speed is there. I just need to be able to gate. We will do everything and I’ll be ready.”

Images – Sandra Smith

2019 HSBC 4X National Championships presented by Schwalbe

Saturday 29th June saw team rider Scott Beaumont attempting to make British Cycling history by winning his 10th Elite National Championship title at the amazing track in Afan, South Wales.

A track that has served Scott well over the years, he was fired up and ready to give this everything.

The day started with practice and straight away Scott was looking good. He found a technical line in the pro line that involved taking off from the small line and boosting all the way over to the pro line. It was fast but tricky. By the end of practice he had the track dialled and was ready to qualify.

Next up it was qualifying. Quite literally one lap, no crap. There is no room for error. It has to be perfect or you are packing the bike up and heading home.

Scott seeded as number 1 was the last rider to go. He made a great start and looked pretty good through the top sections. Through the rocks he didn’t hit the right line and again in the last turn he slid a little at the entrance and these little mistakes mounted up to Scott crossing the line in 3rd. 

It wasn’t a perfect start but the team regrouped at the truck and were ready for racing.

In the quarter final, Scott made a great start and checked out. It was a perfect lap and Scott stamped his plans for the day taking an easy win and looking fast.

Onto the semi final. Scott again made a great start and led the race through turn one. On the exit another rider dived to the extreme inside and cut Scott off at the exit. It was a great move but there was no panic. On the second straight Scott was held on the outside as he battled but then in the second turn the other two riders dived inside. There was contact and unfortunately Scott was thrown from his bike landing on his back.

The medics were immediately called as Scott was in considerable pain. He was extensively examined on the track and after 20 minutes he got back to his feet. 

On initial examination, Scott had severely bruised his coccyx and kidney area. Against all doctors orders, Scott managed to drag himself back to the start for the small final. He simply could not even walk but he knew that if he did not ride, he would receive zero UCI World Ranking points. If he got on the gate he would get 8th position and valuable points to his overall.

The gate dropped and Scott literally rolled down the track. Another rider crashed so Scott actually finished 3rd giving him 7th for the day.

It was a bad day at the races and the team are gutted but that’s the nature of 4X and Saturday just wasn’t Scott’s day.

We will be back in 2020 fighting for this title again.

Scott will now undergo treatment all week with Core Clinics as he fixes his lower back with the intention of racing rounds 9 and 10 of the BMX National Series this coming weekend in Glasgow.

We will update you all laster in the week with his progress.

Scott is leaving everything on the line at every race and it’s quite the roller coaster during the course of a season. Thank you for the incredible support.

4X ProTour Round 1: Fort William

Scott Beaumont
Seeding – 4th
Result – 3rd

After an up and down start to the year, Scott Beaumont arrived in Fort William feeling strong and back to full fitness. Round 1 of the 2019 4X ProTour was back in Scotland and thankfully Scott was ready to race.

After signing on, Scott picked up his number plate and all systems were go. Scott was seeded as World number 2 at this race on the recent UCI World rankings and would therefore qualify with the number 66 plate.

The first practice session was held on Thursday under terrible conditions. Heavy rain all day made it horrible outside but actually made the race track fantastic. The sandy nature of the track meant that there was plenty of grip and Scott made the most of this 1.5 hour session dialling his lines ready for qualifying on Friday.

On Friday the weather improved and it was time to qualify. Scott had worked on the fastest line down the hill during practice and he was all set to set a qualifying time.

Qualifying is very simple. One lap, no crap. There is just one chance to qualify in the top 32 riders. A mistake, crash or mechanical and its time to go home.

In the gate, Scott looked calm and focused. The gate dropped and Scott fired down the long first straight. Hitting all his lines and putting together a good run, Scott crossed the finish line with a time that would give him 4th position for the session – 0.4 seconds behind the fastest time.

“Yes I’m happy with that. I had a good run and hit all my marks. The real day is tomorrow and we will be ready to race” said Scott in the finish area.

Race day arrived and thankfully the sun was out. The track dried and conditions were perfect.

During the day Scott did interviews with BBC as well as in front of the huge Fort William crowd ahead of the finals. After a short practice session, the scene was set and it was time to race.

Round 1. Scott chose the inside gate, made a great start and took a commanding lead to win the race, leading from start to finish. 

Quarter Final. In the quarter final, Scott again opted for gate 1. Making a trademark explosive gate, Scott again took the win easily, leading the race from start to finish and opening up a good lead by the finish line.

In the Semi Final, Scott would face his biggest rival, fastest qualifier, Czech Republic rider Tomas Slavik. Slavik chose gate 2. Feeling good with his gate, Scott decided on gate 3 to try and drag race him on the first straight. The gate dropped and Scott made a flier. The two riders went bar to bar on the first straight both ending into the lead at different parts of the first straight. Entering the first turn level, Slavik took the advantage from being inside. Scott settled into second and looked very comfortable.

Exiting the last turn, Scott got an amazing drive and overtook Slavik across the finish line to take the win and book displace in the final as the only unbeaten rider all day.

Final time. In the final Scott had third pick of the gate and he elected to go for gate four. Giving himself space to get a good drive and fast wide line in turn one. 

The commentator had the crowd going wild. All chanting my name, blowing air horns, revving chainsaws and blowing whistles. It was an electric atmosphere.

As the beeps went Scott missed the jump by a fraction and entered turn one wide in fourth. He carried lots of speed and was close to the front guys when disaster happened in turn two with one of the riders crashing out. Scott had to swerve around him and then set off in chase again. 

Sat in third, Scott gained on second but across the finish line he could not get there.

Taking third, Scott was content:

“If you had said to me six weeks ago that I would have finished third here I would not have believed you. I can’t thank Core Clinics enough for the help they have given me in getting back to full fitness. 

This has been a great start for the team in the 2019 4X ProTour and we can definitely build on this going forwards.

Our next race will be the Malverns festival in two weeks time where Scott will be racing Dual Slalom, Quad Eliminator and Downhill over the three day festival weekend.

Hopefully see you all there.

Images – Charles Robertson