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2017 Worlds: The Journey Begins

Great article from Mike Carruth at

I found out that the 2017 UCI BMX World Championships would be coming to the yet-to-open Novant Health BMX Supercross track in Rock Hill, SC on the afternoon of June 12, 2014.

THAT was big news, and we scrambled to get the details together and confirm the story that came over the Twitter feed that day.

Fast-forward three years, plus a month-and-change, and the Rock Hill facility has not-only opened, but has hosted more than half-a-dozen great events. UCI BMX World Cups, USA BMX Carolina Nationals, and countless local events for the community.

The plan for investing US$7 Million to build the facility was always for it to become a “magnet,” attracting BMXers from far-and-wide to visit Rock Hill. We would stay in the local hotels, and experience some of the famous Southern Hospitality that the Southern United States is so famous for.

The plan worked. It has become just-that in the time between opening day on August 25, 2014 and today.

And now we’re down to the final two days, in a three-year march to the Rock Hill Worlds.

I’m sure we ALL had our own, individual plan well-prepared. For racers, “how am I going to qualify?,” For parents “how are we going to pay for the trip?” For my part, it was planning out the computing, photography and other technical needs of the #NewsTeam for the trip.

Then, suddenly, the moment is at hand. Panic joins excitement in the emotional cocktail of simply pulling out of the driveway. “What are we forgetting?” “Did you pack (chargers, batteries, camera bag—really anything I have ever forgotten in nine years of doing this)?”

It is no comfort, reading Facebook Sunday Morning, learning a friend from overseas forgot his laptop—in EUROPE! Hey, at least I can turn around and head back North up I-65, if it came to it. But, certainly, there is a point of no return.

It’s going to be an incredible, unforgettable week of BMX in the steamy South, that’s for sure.

With over 1,000 riders representing Team USA, the UCI way of doing things will certainly be a different experience that they’re used to. Of course, that’s part of the experience, too.

We’re all as ready as we’ll ever be. Practice is underway, with more on Monday. Racing starts at 8AM Tuesday, with all Cruiser classes. The first W1 titles will be awarded that-very day, and everyday thereafter, til the Elites get their rainbow jerseys on Saturday night.

If you didn’t make it to Rock Hill, or decide to spectate from the air conditioned comfort of your hotel room, you can watch the race action on YouTube Live (link below). We are also linking the official schedule, so you can keep up with where things are in the program, and what’s coming next.

OK, hatch closed. Shifter engaged to “Drive.” 599 miles on the countdown.

See ya’ll Monday!

—Mike Carruth


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