300 toddlers, aged just 18 months to 5 years-old, raced no-pedal balance bikes at the Strider UK World Cup this Sunday, in the biggest ever UK celebration of balance bike riding and racing at the National Cycling Centre, the home of British Cycling, in Manchester.
The event, which was the second biggest event globally, saw the British balance bike champion Ashton Heron (3 years) retain his title; and saw 2 year-old Jack Wall and 5 year-old Tosin Adegbehingbe take the honours in their respective age-group finals.
Adrian, Ashton’s dad, said: “It was an incredible day of racing in a stunning venue - all of the kids just loved it! There really is nothing else like this type of event around for toddlers and young children in the UK. It’s these type of events that will really leave a legacy to the Olympics this year.”
2012 saw the first ever organised series of toddler STRIDER balance bike events in the UK with thousands of children taking up the chance to ride and race at events across the country.
The event this Sunday, which is the last event of the 2012 season, saw some of the most exciting and closely fought Strider Cup racing of the year, Melanie Thomas, Organiser of the Strider UK World Cup event, summed up the day by saying: “It was a great day from start to finish with the final race of the day being decided by a matter of inches!”
“Even though this is the first ever year that strider racing has been held in the UK, we have amassed a very loyal and rapidly growing following of riders and families who have loved the chance to race at events all over the country. Not only are we planning to continue the Strider Cup series in 2013 – but we’re hoping to make it bigger and better than ever giving access to children to ride and race at events all over the country – no matter what their ability!”
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This was broadcast on BBC Breakfast on 20th October 2012 with Mike Bushell, BBC Sports Correspondent talking about the Strider UK & World Cup events in Manchester, UK and the STRIDER World Championships Sarasota, Florida. It also includes an interview with the current UK champion, Ashton Heron (aged 3) and his father Adrian. It was great to meet Ashton and his parents in Florida! Best of luck defending your title.
There are still 2 more chances for the US Strider Riders to race at USA BMX National events this year. The Disney Cup Fall Nationals are taking place in Orlando the 26th-28th of October and the Grand Nationals are November 22-25th. The next UK World Cup event takes place on the BMX Track at the National Cycling Centre, Manchester, UK on Sunday 18th November 2012.