Filed under National Champions on January 02, 2018 |
No.1 Pro: Connor Fields
It'd been nine years since an American born and bred AA-pro BMXer had hoisted the No.1 Pro Cupp high above their head on the Grands National stage. That dude was racer-turned-school teacher Randy Stumpfhauser. At that time, Vegas' Connor Fields was a 17 year old rising star in the amateur ranks, about to turn pro and already dreaming of Olympic glory some day.
That day came in 2016 - in Rio, when America's greatest hope for Olympic Gold succeeded in his quest. Fields became the first American to win an Olympic Gold medal for BMX.
Now, there's a big difference between winning a one-lap main for a title than there is winning a year-long series - and next on Connor's list was to concentrate on the USA BMX Pro championship. It'd be a tough one - with 22 races over ten months. All year long, Connor and his Factory Chase teammate, Joris Daudet, battled it out for the win. Joris, already being a 2-time Champ, was ready to defend his plate and hoped to win a third-consecutive No.1 title. But there's no denying Connor when he sets his mind to something - as he proved in Rio.
By the time November rolled around he and Joris were basically tied in points. Less than 40 points separated the two, and Fields was on a mission. After winning the ROC, he went into the Grands as the points leader, and Joris having fought a food poisoning on Friday, would only help Fields mentally and perhaps hurt Joris' mindset and physicality.
During the Saturday night Pro Championship Finals, Fields was on fire. While Daudet gave it his all - including an inside-swooping elbow in turn two during the second main, Connor didn't flinch and kept his eye on the prize. It was an incredible night for Connor, as he broke the 9-year drought of U.S. racers being No.1 Pro.
There's no denying Connor's future spot in the BMX Hall of Fame - from Olympic Gold to No.1 Pro. Now all there is left for him is a Wolrd Championship.
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