Leon is a rising star in the BMX world, having achieved a number 1 ranking in the UK for his age group (U14) he is now competing with the 15 and 16 year olds. We have decided to help him as he has qualified for the World Championships this year and last year so he clearly has the talent but was unable to go last year due to the costs involved. We wish him well.
Below are a few blogs Leon has done for us to give us an incite to the world of BMX . . .
Hi, my name is Leon Parker-Livesey and I am 14 years old, and I am a BMX racer.
BMX Racing National Series Round 7 and 8
I am currently the National and British number 1 in BMX Racing for my age. This weekend, June 15th and 16th I rode at Peckham, London, for a National race event. In these races I wanted to challenge myself more after winning last year’s National series, so I rode one year up to race with 15-year olds. I have only just come back from a broken elbow, so I was not at my best. Fortunately, I still made the A final on Saturday finishing 8th and I finished 9th on Sunday by winning the B Final.
North Region BMX Racing Round 7
Today, 23rd June I raced 2 years up with the 16 year olds at the Regional Race in Plattfields, Manchester and won all of my races.
2019 UCI BMX World Championships – Heusden Zolder
Practice day 1
My first impression of the track was BIG, long and very technical.
I thought this would take some getting used to and then when I got to ride the track on day one I didn’t quite get the hang of it; I only got 4 laps
Day 2 Practice
I found the track much better on day 2 and found some faster lines to take, after that, I was a lot more confident.
Each of the 47 countries competing has a tented area for riders. The GB tent had around 350 riders, all getting ready for races, doing stretches and warming up, eating pasta, nuts and other energy foods. We had lots of water and watermelons as the heat was unbelievable.
The atmosphere in the tent was very friendly with everyone chatting and being supportive.
The GB team members/helpers told us when to move out of the tent for our races. There were 3 staging areas that we had to go to. we spent about half an hour in each one waiting for other races to finish. This meant that from leaving the tent to being on the gate ready to race took about 1 and a half hours. During this time, we were given water to drink and each area had shade but was still very hot. It was a relief to get to the gate but also nerve racking.
I was nervous on the gate in my first moto as I didn’t know who I was riding against and it is a very technical track which I had only had 8 practice laps on.
As the starting beeps went off, I snapped out of the gate and got out in front, this enabled me to take all the fast lines I’d worked out in practice and continue to extend my lead, winning by 5 or 6 bike lengths.
I was confident in the second moto after a good win in the first. Not as good a gate this time but I continued to pull away as I did in the first and won by a similar distance.
A good gate saw me win the 3rd moto by about half a straight, feeling very confident and ready for next race.
After the motos there was a 3.5-hour delay as the local hospital was overrun with accidents but also spectators suffering from heat stroke due to the extreme temperature of 45degrees.
The delay was good as I got to go back to the hotel and cool down but also bad as after winning the 3 motos so well, I was very confident and ready to race.
In my 1/16th race, 2 riders on either side of me got very good gates and got out in front, leaving me in 5th place around the first berm (corner). On the second straight, I worked my way into 4th place, which is a qualifying position and on the last berm I went underneath 4th place and got into third.
On the first jump of the last straight, I hit my front wheel hard losing a lot of speed and 2 riders passed me. I pumped hard down the last straight and was catching 4th place only to run out of track and missed out on a qualifying position by less than 6 inches.
I was very upset as I knew I was capable of making it through, but a silly mistake cost me the chance of a title. This has made me more determined to train and work harder to become better, stronger, faster and win a world plate.
I would to thank the Lewis Balyckyi Trust for your support