2018 USA BMX Sunshine State Nationals Race Report
There’s something pleasing about seeing the vibrant green grass against the orange slurried surface of Sarasota BMX. The nation’s oldest BMX facility played host to a USA BMX national for the first time in its illustrious history. Back in 2016 the facility went through a major overhaul and became the 2nd Supercross track in the state of Florida.
The big hills always bring out the best amateurs and this weekend was no exception. We saw National Points leader Anthony Bucardo continue his win streak on Friday by winning the ever popular SX Open class. He was able to hold off DK’s Spencer Cole and local hotshot Joseph Leto. On Saturday Bucardo would sit out and focus on adding a few points to his National tally in 17-20. With Bucardo out, Leto took the win on his home turf and Daylight’s Zach Jacobs to finish up right behind him with a second.
Venezuela’s Jholman Sivira, who has been living in the Sunshine State as of late, dominated A Pro. The long tall Texan Billy Russell chased him around both days for the seconds and Santiago Suarez and Brandon Roharik finished up in the third slots, respectively.
Tyler Brown secured the lead in the Vet Pro points chase with his victory on Friday night over the always hard charging Jonathan Suarez. On Saturday afternoon Suarez returned the favor and put a last turn swoop on Brown to take the victory. Its been a while since we have seen a 3 way battle for the Vet Pro title but this should be one of the ones to watch in Tulsa for sure.
Elite woman has been the Alise Willoughby show all year and this weekend was no different. Alise has won every single pro series main event in 2018 outside of the Midwest Nationals when she was on her honeymoon. Even with her dominance this season she’s still not outside of the 480 point window required to claim the title just yet. We’ve seen some strange things happen at Grands over the years so don’t count out Haro’s Brooke Crain who is sitting in second place.
Joris Daudet has won more main events this year than every other AA combined. Nonetheless his found himself in 6th place exiting the 2nd turn during Friday night’s semi final. The Frenchman played it cool and passed into 4th before the finish line. His teammate and this month’s cover boy Connor Fields grabbed the victory. Considering the last time Fields was in Florida he was in the hospital, we’d say that this trip was much more satisfying. On Sunday Joris roared back for the win, Fields netted a second and the World Champ Sylvain Andre finished up in third.
On the amateur side of things Daylight’s Carly Jacobs had a standout weekend with wins in 17-20 Women’s Cruiser and 17-20 Women both days. She looks like primed and ready for Oklahoma. Also having stellar weekends were Wiawis’ Matthew Haas in 14X, Curtis Krey in 15X, Paulo Moreira in 41-45 X and Cruiser, Isabella Nelson in 11-12 Girl Cruiser, Eric Rupe in 51-55 Cruiser and 51& Over X, Braden Romer in 31-35 Cruiser, Stella Sunseri in 12 Girls and Ty Young in 11 Cruiser.
It was a picture perfect weekend at a picture perfect facility. We’ve seen a lot of tracks over the years but not many have been as visually pleasing as Sarasota is. If you’re looking to get some beach time in and ride an awesome and challenging track, look no further than the oldest one in the country.