Aug 16, 2023
Cape Cod BMX Prepares For National Competition
Cape Cod BMX in Sandwich has welcomed many hundreds of bikers and BMX enthusiasts to town for the New England National competition this weekend. Though the official races are scheduled to begin today
Cape Cod BMX in Sandwich has welcomed many hundreds of bikers and BMX enthusiasts to town for the New England National competition this weekend.
Though the official races are scheduled to begin today on Friday, August 4, the track has remained busy all week. In the days leading up to the event, riders have been arriving and practicing on the track. Cape Cod BMX has hosted two training clinics with professional riders on Wednesday and Thursday and held some initial races Tuesday evening.
Track manager Tammy A. Gibbs said volunteers from the community have been essential to preparing for this weekend; in the past few weeks, volunteers and track staff have also been busy installing bleachers, paid for by a grant from the Sandwich Visitor Services Board in June.
This will be the largest event the track has ever hosted. Last summer, the track hosted a qualifying event for the USA BMX Gold Cup with 300 riders participating. This weekend’s races have more than 850 registered riders and are expected to have 3,000 spectators in attendance.
The Sandwich flea market, which is typically held on Sundays at the field across from the track on Quaker Meetinghouse Road, has been canceled so that the field can be used as additional parking and camping for the races.
Racers from all over the country, and even Canada, are expected to show up for the main event this weekend, but even by Tuesday, riders from as far as Arizona arrived to begin learning the track.
Out-of-town riders expressed amazement at the size of the track.
“I travel the country, and I do this for a living. I’ve seen about 80 percent of the tracks in the country, and this track is amazing,” said Dillon Reeder with TB Products, which will be providing the trophies for this weekend’s competition.
Local riders are proud of the Sandwich track.
Nine-year-old Matteo Martin has been racing for about three years and has been involved with Cape Cod BMX since the track was moved from its longtime home on Joint Base Cape Cod to the new Sandwich location in 2021. His mother, Cindy Martin, was involved in the grant-writing process to move the BMX track to its current home.
Matteo was all smiles while he described his efforts to move rocks and help design and build the track.
Ms. Martin said she and her husband decided to try BMX as a sport for their son because he did not have the attention span for team sports like baseball.
“One thing I love about BMX is that it’s great for the neurodiverse. Unlike baseball, you don’t have to worry about pitchers or catchers or anyone else on a field. With BMX, it’s just you, your bike and the track,” Ms. Martin said.
Mr. Reeder agreed that BMX is a good individual sport but added that it is also a great family sport.
Several riders in attendance at Tuesday night’s race brought siblings, cousins and parents, not just to watch but to race as well.
At just 3 years old, Riley (Big Peck) Peck followed older cousins onto the track, making him the youngest rider competing in Tuesday night’s race.
Ms. Gibbs said the BMX community is like a big family. Riders will meet at one competition and stay in touch, excitedly counting down the days until they race each other at the next one. She said a family she met at a competition in Maryland is coming up to help with the concession stand at this weekend’s nationals.
“The families and friends you make last forever,” Ms. Gibbs said.
The opening ceremony for the New England Nationals is set to begin on today at 1:30 PM. Races tomorrow and Sunday are scheduled to begin bright and early at 9 AM.
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