Today, we’re breaking down the process of competing in a USA BMX Freestyle competition for 2022 with the most current information we have. If you’re a young American with dreams of standing on the podium at the Olympics or becoming a National Champ, read on.
WHAT IS A BMX FREESTYLE COMPETITION?
BMX Freestyle Competitions are judged events, in which riders are scored based upon their skill at executing a routine, including one or more of a variety of different maneuvers, that are known as “tricks”. Within the context of these regulations, BMX Freestyle Competitions or Events shall refer to as “Park Contests”. - Page 1 of the handbook.
ABOUT USA BMX
Launched in 2020, USA BMX Freestyle heads into our second full season in 2022 with 8 live events, along with digital events throughout the year. We continue to grow and hope to see you at a competition soon!
YOU NEED TO GET A MEMBERSHIP (2 options to choose from)
A USA BMX Freestyle Membership
Minimum Age Requirement: None
Aside from having a bike and a hunger for competition, you will need at the very bare minimum, a USA BMX Freestyle Membership, aka the amateur level membership. This membership is good for the calendar year (Jan 1 – Dec 31) and in order to compete at these events, you have to join the club! Through this membership, you get to collect points based on how well you do in competition, and at the end of the season, you are ranked nationally based on your points.
UCI International Membership
Minimum Age Suggested: 15*
Like racing, you’ll often find UCI events and USA BMX events scheduled at the same competition, that’ll be the same case here at these USA BMX Freestyle stops, which are called C1 events. Riders with a USA BMX Freestyle Membership may compete in a C1 UCI event, however your points will count nationally but not towards the UCI, which is important IF you want to be on the pathway to the Olympics. If that’s something you’re considering, you’ll want a UCI International Membership. If you get this, you also don’t need a USA BMX Freestyle Membership to compete in a C1 event (Which is the level at which the Elites like Hannah Roberts and Perris Benegas compete in). If the Olympics is what you’re after, C1 events and higher are what matters. With this membership, you are ranked internationally.
*Why is the age suggested? If you’re under 15 and you only care about BMX Freestyle, save money and do not get the UCI International Membership. Right now the minimum age permitted to compete in a UCI BMX Freestyle event is 15 and over.
FYI: If you are a BMX Racer with a USA BMX membership, a BMX Freestyle Membership is separate even though it’s under “USA BMX”. You will need to purchase both to compete in both disciplines. However, the UCI International Membership covers all cycling disciplines recognized by the UCI.
A rider can participate in both the Amateur and Elite categories during the same season IF THE RIDER IS NOT CURRENTLY RANKED TOP 50 in UCI ELITE WORLD RANKINGS. Once a rider has participated in a UCI Elite Competition, they are only allowed to enter the USA BMX Freestyle Amateur class of EXPERT-OPEN only and no other class offered by USA BMX Freestyle. - Page 2 of the handbook.
PRE-REGISTER FOR THE ROUNDS
Just like any other competition, you will need to pre-register through https://www.usabmxf.com/. Rounds are typically broken up like so: Friday is practice, Saturday is competition day and Sunday is the overflow day in case Saturday rains out or they were unable to finish. Registration is straightforward, fill out the form and make sure you have your membership number ready. Every contest has a fee, and USA BMX Freestyle competitions are no different. For amateurs, be prepared to pay $75 and $100 if you’re looking to enter C1 event.
|Round 1||January 28-30||Premises Park||Tucson, AZ|
|Round 2||February 25-27||Woodward West||Stallion Springs, CA|
|*Round 3||April 1-3||Dodson Sports Park||Longview, TX|
|Round 4||May 20-22||Woodward Park||Woodward, PA|
|Round 5||June 24-26||Sk8 Cary||Cary, NC|
|Round 6||August 12-14||CV BMX||Newberg, OR|
|Round 7||September 9-11||4 Seasons Skate Park||Milwaukee, WI|
|*The Finals||October 14-16||Woodward Park||Woodward, PA|
3 MAKES A PARTY
In these competitions, there are several categories for women, including Women 11 and under, Women 12+, and Elite. In order for these classes to proceed, you need to have at least 3 women in the category, or 5 if it’s a UCI C1 event. In a situation where there are 3 women spread across different age groups, then the women can be combined at the discretion of USA BMX Freestyle. If for some reason 3 women register but only 2 show up, the competition still goes on.
Depending on the number of riders, there may be a qualification process or you may go straight to finals. For a class that has 3-9 riders, you can expect to go straight to finals, so be prepared with your two best, 45-second runs. Your run will be judged based on difficulty, height, flow, originality, style, consistency, variety of tricks, control, landings, and the use of the entire course.