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What It’s Like to Participate in the BMX FreeStyle World Championships

By Martin Dražil

When I found out that despite the Covid-19 situation, the UCI World Urban Cycling Championships would take place this year, I immediately started to work on my tricks. With no championship of this kind being held in over a year, I knew I couldn’t miss this challenge. On June 4th – June 8th I would join the race.

As the weather outside wasn’t ideal for training and my usual spot was still closed due to Covid-19, the little space I had at home had to suffice. However, these small obstacles couldn’t stop me. When I was leaving for Montpellier at the beginning of June, I felt pretty confident.

Emotions flooded this year’s championships. No one had raced in over a year due to Covid-19 and, most importantly, there were two spots for the Olympic Games in Tokyo up for grabs.

The best riders from around the world arrived to take part in the race – what a show to watch! The winner Matthias Dandois showed a beautiful and perfectly handled ride. However, the absence of cheering spectators considerably transformed the race’s atmosphere.

My own performance didn’t exactly go as planned, but I’m still grateful for this valuable experience. I ended up in 14th position, right below the line to qualify. The organisers did an excellent job, and so did the participants – everyone respected the rules set to keep everyone safe, and in the end, there were no Covid-related complications. The perfectly organised schedule allowed everyone to train at a set time in a set place without risking contracting Covid-19.

Big thanks to We Love Cycling, the Czech Freestyle BMX Association and everyone else who supported me and trusted me in my endeavour to represent Czechia.