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.

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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. 

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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.

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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

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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.

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