The 2016 USA BMX National Series and North American Supercross Series will make a stop in Rock Hill, at the Novant Health BMX Supercross Track. The facility, owned and operated by the City of Rock Hill, is one of the premier BMX facilities in the United States. Open in 2014, the facility has hosted the 2014 USA BMX Gold Cup East Regional Finals and the 2015 USA BMX Carolina Nationals. The track is one of three operational USA BMX tracks that features both the Olympic size starting hill and an amateur starting hill. The facility will also play host to the 2017 UCI BMX World Championships.
The 2016 Carolina Nationals will take place the weekend of April 22 through 24. The event will feature many of the top amateur riders in the United States along with many of the top professional athletes from around the world. Two-time Olympic Gold Medalist, Maris Strombergs (Latvia) and 2012 Olympic Silver Medalist, Sam Willoughby (Australia) are both expected to compete. The two medalist will be joined by a number of other Olympians and Olympic hopefuls. With over $60,000 in pro purse money up for grabs over the weekend, the elite riders will be competing not only for Olympic qualifying points, but also for the richest single day purse in the sport of BMX racing. Amateur and “A” pro riders will also be competing on the 8 meter pro hill as they try to claim one of the 8 available spots offered in the Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ).
The LCQ will take the top 16 elite riders, the top 4 “A” pro riders and the top 4 amateurs in the United States, using their best scores from the North American Supercross Series (Oldsmar, Florida / Rock Hill, South Carolina / Grand Junction, Colorado) and have them compete in one race (the day before trials) to participate in the United States BMX Olympic Trials in Chula Vista, California. This one rider will join the seven selected riders to make up the eight-man field at the Olympic Trials.
Elite riders will also take part in the North American Continental Championship on Sunday. This race will feature only riders from the United States, Canada, Mexico, and countries in the Caribbean. This race will carry more weight for riders and countries vying for Olympic Qualification.
With all of the activities taking place on the big starting hill, the majority of action will still be taking place on the amateur hill. With over 1,000 entries expected in the amateur class, racing will feature many of the top amateur riders in the United States. Many of these riders will be representing the United States in Colombia at the 2016 BMX World Championships next month.
Rock Hill offers new rider orientation on Tuesday evening at 5:30 PM and Saturday at 2:30 PM. They have practice from 4 until 8 PM on Wednesday and Thursday, and local racing of Friday at 8 PM. For up-to-date information on the track, visit http://cityofrockhill.com/departments/parks-recreation-tourism/parks-facilities/rock-hill-outdoor-center/novant-health-bmx or to find a track near you, visit www.usabmx.com.