Schwalbe British 4X Series Round 1: Chicksands

After the long winter break, our 2023 4X season fired back into action with round 1 of the Schwalbe British 4X Series which was held at Chicksands in Bedfordshire on Sunday.

After filming a course preview film at the track on Thursday, Scott was immediately looking fast on the track and certainly looked like he had the pace to be at the sharp end in racing.

For the elites, the start was going to be absolutely vital with the ‘S’ bend at the top of the track where all the remaining action would take place. Britain’s fastest riders, all still bunched together head into these turns trying to out brake each other. Sometimes it works and sometimes it all unleashes!

In the motos Scott took a win and two second places which he was fairly happy about. He led races, was passed and crucially made some great passes himself on this tight and technical track. He also made a huge mistake whilst leading the second moto where he nearly crashed but saved it!

Into the semi final as the top seed in his race, Scott took gate one on the inside. Making a perfect gate, Scott led the race into turn one, but heading into the S bends, another rider got inside and Scott had to ride the outside berm. He then got immediately shuffled back to 4th and the race went from perfect to a disaster in 2 seconds straight. 

Unfortunately he did not make the main final. However. In 4X there is a small final to determine 5th to 8th positions and to award the final step of the 5 rider podium.

In the small final, Scott took gate 2 to give himself a bit more space. He made a great start and rode his best lap of the day, taking the win, 5th on the day and the final step on the podium. 

‘Today has been great. It’s been a long winter and it feels great to get started with 2023 4X season. Although I didn’t take the win today, there are a lot of positives to take away. My track speed was really good, and it has been a good start to the year. It was awesome to see so many riders racing 4X in the UK and I’m excited to celebrate 20 years of British 4X all year’ Said Scott at the finish line.

The podiums were held immediately after the finals.

Round 2 will take place at Fly Up 417 in Gloucestershire on Sunday May 7th. See you all there.

Thank you to all our partners for the 2023 season. It’s going to be a great year.

Race Report – 2023 British BMX Series Rounds 1 & 2: Cyclopark, Kent

Rounds 1 and 2 of the 2023 British BMX Series took place at Cyclopark in Kent. An incredible facility for BMX, road cycling, cyclocross, XC and a great skatepark too. 

We arrived on Friday afternoon, parked the motorhome, set the team tent up and then it was a couple of official practice sessions. The weather was awful. Cyclopark had transformed into Cyclone-Park. However the show must go on and with a better forecast for the weekend, the team decided to utilise the Friday session to get used to the flow of the track. With a strong cross wind the session was simply about pumping around the track to lock in where the jumps were and look at some lines.

After practice our photographer Charles Robertson took some great images of our 2023 ICE race bike.

Saturday: Round 1

Saturday morning rolled around and it was time to get the 2023 show on the road. The weather was much better. Cloudy but no rain and less wind. 

In BMX riders have 3 qualifying races – called motos which qualify riders through to the knockout stages of quarter finals, semi finals and then the final.

Scott’s day got off to a good start, finishing 3rd in moto 1. His speed was good but his outside gate made it tough. In the second race he finished 4th after holding 2nd all the way to the finish line where he was pipped by 2 other riders. In his final moto he took a good 2nd and really looked good.

Qualifying through to the final, and with 3rd pick, Scott took gate 6. He wanted some space to simply focus on his first straight and not bang bars with the others in to turn 1. The gambled worked perfectly. Making a great start Scott powered down the start, just a fraction behind the leader. In a battle into turn 1, Scott managed to get all the way over and slot into 2nd. He tailed the leader all the way and as he closed on the final straight, the rider in 3rd also drafted Scott. Crossing the line it was a photo finish for 2nd – Scott taking it by 0.004 of a second! 

“I am stoked with that race. I gave it my all and finishing 2nd in a close race like that is a great result to start the season. I have had a great day and it’s amazing to be racing in Cyclopark again” said Scott in the finish area.

Sunday: Round 2

After some great food on Saturday night and a decent sleep, it was time for round 2.

In the motos, Scott looked on fire. He finished 2nd, 1st and 2nd in his motos and was able to progress to the final with the 2nd choice of gate.

After the motos Scott decided that he would change gearing, dropping from a 44-16 to a 43-16. Just to try and get a better jump out of the start and get across to the inside.

In the final, Scott took another huge gamble and chose gate 5. The theory was that the riders had been bumping and banging all weekend and this would give him a clean run around the outside. He made a great start and rocketed down the start straight. Level into turn 1. Scott hustled and got himself into 3rd. Another solid lap and he crossed the line in 3rd.

“That was a tough day, but again, I’m really happy with my riding. Finishing 2nd yesterday and 3rd today lands me 2nd overall in the points in the British BMX National series. We will now turn our attention towards the first 4X Nationals and ProTours of the year I am happy with how fast my legs are turning. There’s plenty to be happy about” said Scott after the final.

The team now has to turn everything around in 4 days as we prepare for the first British Cycling 4X National event of the year at Chicksands in Bedfordshire this weekend – Sunday April 9th.

Many thanks to all our team partners for your support.