NAG Title Chase Update: Cruiser
USA BMX NAG POINTS BATTLES UPDATE: BOYS CRUISER
May 2018 - Update No. 2 by Jacob Smith
The USA BMX National Series has officially hit the 10-race mark following the Dixieland Nationals, which took place from April 20th-22nd. Last weekend, both the Super Nationals (Desoto, Texas) and the Fraser Valley Nationals (Chilliwack, BC, Canada, the first Canadian National of the year) took place. Will all of this going on, right now seems like a good time to take a look at the USA BMX National Age Group Standings. The NAG Standings take each points-paying class (girls cruiser, cruiser, girls, Boys), divides the riders up into their age group, and ranks them based on the amount of National points they have earned over the season. USA BMX counts a rider’s best eight National scores, and any rider who has at least four National scores can be eligible for a NAG Plate. A NAG Plate is one of the most prestigious accomplishments a BMX racer can achieve in their career, and that is why keeping an eye on the current NAG points can be very exciting (and, of course, why racing at a National can be so awesome).
With all of this said, it is time to break down some of the biggest storylines going on the NAG standings right now. In what age groups are their close battles for the top spot? Who is on the verge of being in place to earn a NAG plate? Who should people keep an eye out for at upcoming Nationals? Hopefully, all of those questions will be answered here, and others as well. The boys/men cruiser groups will kick things off.
BOYS/MEN CRUISER (Top Ten earn a NAG plate)
7 & Under - Liam Holt holds down the top spot in the youngest cruiser class, as he leads Liam Auyon by just under 400 points. Third place has and still belongs to Samuel Lachowicz, but Benson Danielo has been making moves lately, and he has gone from tenth to fourth. Joseph Mather rounds out the Top Five, and then other notable riders include Cogan-Martin Kersey, James Johnson, and Montgomery Sobol. Kersey just bumped up from eighth to sixth, while Johnson and Sobol both moved into the Top 15 after previously being on the outside of it.
8 - There has not been a lot of recent movement in the 8cruiser class, but there are definitely some talented riders in this group. In the Top Three, Hayden Passanisi, Dylan Patterson, and Wyatt Hicks all have earned over 1,800 points on the season, and then fourth place Arjuna Burgos is right behind with 1,726 points. Patterson and Hicks just recently made the jump over Burgos to move up within the Top Five, while Ace Laack bumped up from fifteenth to fourteenth, which moves him close to a NAG plate position.
9 - The 9cruiser class has quite the battle brewing at the top of the standings. Daniel Waters is currently in first, but he only leads Carter Cochran by 39 points. Lucas Ruiz and Taylor Koll have both moved up in the standings recently and now hold down 3rd and 4th, respectively. Parker Tramposch just moved into the Top Ten after being in eleventh, and Jayden Linville bounced from fifteenth to eleventh.
10 - Cane Wood is one of the few male cruiser riders that has clipped the 2,000-point mark, and doing so has allowed him to hold nearly a 300 point lead in the 10cruiser NAG standings. Wood leads Gaige Gomolicke, and while third place did belong to Cohen Bundy a little while ago, it now belongs to Chris Felker, who has jumped up from 4th. Mason Hayes now rounds out the Top Five, and other riders like Justin Garcia, Jason Sterling, and Tommy Bruney have made moves in the standings recently.
11 - New leader alert! Just recently, Jason Linville has jumped Avery Fulton and Ryder Santos to take the lead in the 11cruiser NAG standings. Linville only leads Fulton by 95 points and Santos by 121. Elsewhere, Ryder Lawrence made a big leap from twelfth to sixth, Collier Kee moved up in the Top Ten, and Kyle Kirchhoff found a spot in the Top Fifteen.
12 - There has been a lot of movement in the 12cruiser class, but one constant has been AJ Hernandez at the top of the NAG standings. Behind Hernandez is now Charles St. Romain, who recently went from below 1,000 points and sixth place to nearly 1,500 points and second place. Michael Villanueva is third, but then it’s another big leaper in Treyson Dillon (formerly seventh) in fourth. Andrew Trejo rounds out the Top Five, while Tye Young sits behind him in sixth after moving up from eighth. New to the Top Ten are TJ Koch and Brock Smith, who now sit ninth and tenth, respectively.
13 - One of the top young riders in BMX leads the 13cruiser NAG ranks, and that rider is Cannon Wood. Wood leads a very talented pack, which includes Drake Velador (41 back of Wood), Nicholas Baron (229 back), Noah Miguel (291 back), and Jayce Bartlet (627 back). Johnathan Austin has now moved from outside of the Top Fifteen to a Top Ten spot, and Tyler Bailey has almost done the exact same, but he sits in eleventh.
14 - At the moment, it is really a two-rider battle for the No. 1 plate in the 14cruiser class between Angel Montoya and Ceasar Flores. Montoya has the advantage at the moment, as he sits above 2,000 points and 207 points ahead of Flores. Ryan Bramer just jumped from seventh to third, and Foster Henderson used a couple of good national races to move from ninth to fourth. Gavyn Bowers is a new member of the Top Fifteen in this group.
15 - Amakye Anderson provides another new leader alert, as Anderson has recently moved past Joshua Veron for the No. 1 spot in 15cruiser. Anderson leads Veron by 96 points, and then Colten Landwer, Devin Nelson, and Cole Zufelt are all within 250 points of Anderson. Nelson and Zufelt were previously sixth and seventh in the standings, but now they are fourth and fifth, while Landwer is in third. Ian McCauley is on the verge of breaking into a NAG plate position after boosting himself from fourteenth to eleventh, and Jacob Clapp has just moved into the Top Fifteen, as he now sits fourteenth.
16 - There has been a lot of movement lately in the 16cruiser ranks, and that includes the emergence of a new leader! Mason Meininger has taken the scene by storm, and is now atop the 16cruiser class with just under 2,000 points. Kyle Jensen is 186 points behind Meininger, while Brayden Kempel is 198 back. Aaron Blee has moved up a spot from sixth and is now in the Top Five, Trevor Rystrom has made a big leap from eleventh to seventh, and both Yavant Hausler (thirteenth) and Brendan Young (fourteenth) have invaded the Top Fifteen in recent times.
17 to 20 - Riley Shea holds down the top spot in the always exciting 17-20cruiser class, although second place Tyler McGuire is only 82 points behind. From there, it is Jackson Elliott in third and Noah Tanker in fourth, and then it is a big battle for the No. 5 spot. Currently, Tyler Nelson and Nickolas Elliott are tied for fifth with 1,545 points, while Nick Kolesky is just a single point behind them, and Wyatt Smith is 51 points back. Rounding out the Top Ten is Louis Kaminski (up from thirteenth) and Ashton Antil, and some guys moving up behind them include Elliott Schoo, Caden Bowers, and Tre Heximer.
21 to 25 - Right now, the 21-25cruiser class belongs to Shane Harlow, who leads second place Carter O’Neal by over 300 points. Cole Fisher and Brandon Propheter are not too far behind in third and fourth, and then Nick Alejandre rounds out the Top Five are moving up from sixth. Other movers inside the Top Ten include Caleb Dunson, who went from ninth to seventh, and Michael Bonessi, who went from eleventh to ninth.
26 to 30 - New leader alert! Jumping up from third place and into the No. 1 spot is Stacey Eden, who has overtaken the lead in the 26-30cruiser class with 1,369 points. Right behind Eden is another Eden: Max Eden. Max is up from fourth and into second behind Stacey, while Jordan Teeters is up from fifth and into third. Former leader Daniel Patterson now sits fourth, while Evan Gresham now rounds out the Top Five. The biggest mover in this group is Brennan Buiso, who has lept from fifteenth to seventh, and knocked a lot of riders down a spot in the standings.
31 to 35 - Two of the top cruiser riders in the country lead the way in the 31-35cruiser NAG standings. Christian Ricks leads the pack with 1,963 points, but Chris Sutton is right on his wheel with 1,939 points (24 points behind). Nicholas Hurst, Brandon Brand, and Gilbert Contreras round out the Top Five, and Hurst and Brand both recently moved up in the standings to their new spots. Also making big moves towards the top are Keith Matthews (tenth to sixth), Darcy Glencross (outside of Top Fifteen to ninth), and Matthew Baisley (twelfth to tenth).
36 to 40 - Another top cruiser leads our next age group, as Eric Baca leads all 36-40cruisers with 1,965 points. Alex Ross is second, but he is a stunning 538 points behind at the moment. Up from sixth to third is Robert Taylor, and then it is Leeangelo Valencia and Jason St. Romain in the rest of the Top Five. Big movers include Danny Ashbrook, who has jumped from fifteenth to ninth, Adam Scott, who has moved from twelfth to tenth, and Jason Young Jr., who has gone from outside the Top Fifteen to eleventh.
41 to 45 - This age group is one that has seen a lot of movement recently in its NAG standings. Now atop the points board is Darren Lankford, who leads Grady Stimits and former leader Wayne Roon. Lankford is up from third, and Stimits is up from sixth. Making even bigger jumps are Brent Lee and Jason Alstatt, as Lee went from twelfth to fourth, and Alstatt went from thirteenth to fifth! Cory Skinner is also on the upswing, as he sits one point under 1,000 for the season, and just moved from ninth to seventh.
46 to 50 - Shawn Diprete has exploded past the 2,000-point mark and into the No. 1 position in the 46-50cruiser NAG standings, but he does have a lot of talented competition right behind him. First up is former leader Jean Marc Durviaux, who sits 97 points behind Diprete. Next is the duo of Jim Bramer and Drew Motley, who currently has 1,755 and 1,744 points, respectively. In fifth is Jim Nelson with 1,558 points, and then sixth is Donovan Miller with 1,450. This class is definitely one to keep an eye on, and some riders to also keep an eye on include Craig Prince, Jon Lindberg, and Gerry Erickson, who all made recent jumps in the standings.
51 to 55 - Make no mistake about it, the 51-55cruiser class is another one to be on the lookout for. Leading the way currently is Eric Rupe - on his brand new Redline Flight cruiser. The BMX Hall of Famer holds a 147 point lead over former Natl No.1 champ George Goodall. Not far behind Rupe and the Gorgeous one are Robert Raymonde and Eric Sweets, and together all of the Top Four have passed the 1,500-point mark. Rob McAllister rounds out the Top Five after moving up from seventh, and then Cody Smart and John Pringle are two other riders moving their way up in this group’s Top Ten.
56 to 60 - Turnell Henry is currently the man to beat in the 56-60cruiser class. Henry leads second place James Harris by 183 points in the NAG standings right now. With a jump up from fifth, Alfred Freeman now trails Henry and Harris at the top of the board, while Renato Pistolesi (formerly tenth) and Greg Mathias round out the Top Five. Terry Trew has bumped up from eighth to seventh recently, and also recently, Brian Strain has lept from fourteenth to ninth.
61 & Over - Last, but definitely not least, is the 61&over cruiser class. Matt Spencer holds down the No. 1 position with nearly 2,000 points, and he has a significant 500-plus point gap over second place James Gillispie. Albert Patterson is up from fifth and into third, while Richard Lindauer has also made a Top Five jump, as he has gone from eighth to fifth. Also of note, Greg McGill has gained almost 500 points recently and moved from twelfth to seventh, while Danny Bushnell has gained a little over 400 points and gone from thirteenth to ninth.
*National boys/men cruiser Update (Top 99)* - While on the subject of the NAG standings, a look at the National standings would be a good idea as well. This is where every rider with National points gets ranked no matter what their age is to determine who earned the most points overall for that subject of bike (girls/women cruiser, cruiser, girls/women am, boys/men am), and in a way, it can determine who was the top rider for that subject for the year.
Incredibly, the top two riders in the current cruiser National Standings are both from the same age group. 8-year old Hayden Passanisi is holding onto the National No. 1 spot over age class-rival Dylan Patterson. Patterson made one of the most notable jumps in the National standings, as he moved from outside the Top Twenty-Five to second. Behind those two is Shawn Diprete, Cane Wood, and Angel Montoya, who join Passanisi and Patterson in being the only cruiser riders with over 2,000 National points. Diprete is another big jumper, as he has gone from twentieth to third. Eric Rupe, Matt Spencer, Eric Baca, Christian Ricks, and AJ Hernandez round out the Top Ten. Other notable movers include Chris Sutton (twenty-second to fourteenth) and Mason Meininger (thirty-seventh to thirteenth).
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Jacob Smith races out of New York as a 17-20 Intermediate ("at the moment"), along with his brother (who is 21-25 Inter). THey both rode when they were younger in the NBL days, and just recently returned to the sport they love.
Jacob is an avid writer, who has dabbled in sports media, writing in the past as part of cnywrestling.com - a website that covers high school wrestling in the central New York area, and newyorkwrestlingnews.com, which has a similar goal as cnywrestling.com, but is based more around New York State as a whole. Smith is currently enrolled at SUNY Cortland as an Adolescent Education: English major.