New Zealand's BMX best raring to go for world championships in the United States

  • 28/07/2017
Sarah Walker in action
Sarah Walker in action Photo credit: Photosport

Injured Kiwi BMX stars Trent Jones and Sarah Walker have reported in fit, healthy and raring to go at the BMX world championship in the United States this weekend.

The pair will join eight other riders for the elite championships on Sunday (NZT) and are part of the wider 84-strong New Zealand team competing at the Rock Hill course in South Carolina.

Walker has not raced since a crash on her return to the Supercross World Cup in May after finishing seventh on the first day in her comeback ride.

She has had time on the Rock Hill track and has been preparing on the Netherlands track where she crashed, with good friend Laura Smulders, the European champion.

Walker believes she has done all she can to be ready, but says she just won't know until she gets on to the ramp on Sunday.

"I am certainly faster than I was back in May and I placed top-10 there on the first day," Walker said.

"I've had probably the two fastest female riders to train against in Laura and her sister Merel, but I am not certain I will quite have the top-end speed.

"Either way it's exciting to be back racing."

Jones has also been out since May after a crash at the same track left him with a smashed posterior cruciate ligament in his knee.

"In sports like cycling and motorsport, they say that you learn to use the leg without it. So after a few weeks when the swelling went down, I went back to work," Jones said.

The 22-year-old has been back on the bike for five weeks, with some recent racing in Pittsburgh, and training stints at Rock Hill and the former US training centre near San Diego.

There are two things in his favour, he believes: the Rock Hill venue, which is the best in the world, and his top-16 ranking at the end of 2016 which gives him an automatic ride to the elimination finals.

"At best I have four laps to ride in the afternoon - all knockout laps. My knee does not like to have long days before it starts to seize up. I'm pretty happy not to have that morning racing to put the extra stress on the knee."

NZN