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Andover BMX Club Celebrates 25 Years of Thrilling Racing and Achievements

Andover has become a hotbed of BMX racing excellence. This year marks a significant milestone for the local BMX club, Andover BMX Club, as it celebrates its 25th anniversary.

Coinciding with this remarkable achievement are several other notable accomplishments that have brought immense pride to the club and its dedicated members.

The existence of a BMX race track and club in Andover is a stroke of good fortune for the community. While skate parks and pump tracks have become common sights across the nation, race tracks are a rarity. In the expansive South Region, which stretches from London and Kent to Dorset, only about 13 tracks are equipped to host regional races. This scarcity has attracted riders from far and wide, with enthusiasts traveling from places as distant as Oxford and Swindon to train with the Andover BMX Club.

Recently, the club has experienced a surge in membership and witnessed significant investment in the track and its facilities. These developments have translated into an impressive string of successes at regional, national, and even international competitions.

Over the past few months, Andover BMX Club has achieved numerous milestones, solidifying its reputation as a force to be reckoned with in the BMX racing world. One such highlight was the club’s remarkable participation in the British Championships last August, where an impressive contingent of 52 riders represented Andover, making it the second-largest club at the event, trailing only the host city, Bournemouth. This year, the club aims to replicate this achievement, aspiring to send an equally substantial number of riders, if not more, to the British Championships in Derby. With several South Champions currently honing their skills at Andover, the club harbors hopes of clinching the British Champion title across multiple categories this year.

Photo Credit: Adrian Dennis

Andover BMX Club’s prowess extends beyond national competitions, as demonstrated by their robust presence at the National series. With over 30 riders participating in each round this season, the club has managed to secure a coveted top 10 position in the national club league. Surpassing larger and more prestigious clubs like Birmingham, Peckham, and Bournemouth, Andover BMX Club currently sits in 8th place. As the season reaches its midpoint, the club remains determined to improve its standing at the next two rounds, slated to be held in Gosport at the end of the month. The club anticipates sending an impressive contingent of 40 riders to this event.

Setting new benchmarks, Andover BMX Club recently launched the British Cycling BMX National Development team in collaboration with several locally based businesses, namely Indy Racing Components, NXTeamwear, and nine-w Racing. Comprised entirely of Andover riders, this team has surged to the top of the leaderboard in the “national team” competition. If their exceptional performance continues, Team AIR (Andover Indy Racing) could secure a promotion to the elite league for the next season.

With 15 Andover riders qualifying for this year’s World Championships, scheduled for August, the club eagerly awaits the most prestigious annual BMX racing event in the world. This illustrious competition presents an opportunity for Andover BMX Club to claim a coveted W plate, as any rider placing in the top 8 of their category earns the privilege of racing under a world plate for the following season.

The club also takes pride in welcoming one of its newest riders, Sarah-Jane Nichols. At 54 years of age, Nichols, a former world champion from the 1986 world champs, has made a triumphant return to racing this year. Already making her mark at Nationals, she secured the second-place spot at the last round in Manchester just a few weeks ago, showcasing her incredible talent and tenacity.

Furthermore, Andover BMX Club has undertaken significant infrastructure improvements, including the installation of floodlighting at the track. This first phase of enhancements, set to be completed this week, represents a culmination of planning efforts spanning the past couple of years.

In addition to participating in national and international events, Andover BMX Club proudly hosts a regional round of racing during the summer season. As the event approaches, expectations are high, as last year’s raceday drew over 500 riders to the track. On Sunday, July 16th, riders from across the region will converge on Andover for an exhilarating day of BMX racing. The action-packed event, which caters to riders as young as 5 or 6 years old to those in their mid to late 50s, promises a fast-paced and fun experience for all. Starting at around 11 am and concluding at approximately 4 pm, the races guarantee every participant at least three chances to prove their skills. The most talented riders will progress to the knockout rounds, with the ultimate aim of reaching the finals. As the club celebrates its 25th anniversary, it also plans to incorporate some special festivities into the event. The organizers extend an invitation for coverage of this exciting occasion.

Andover BMX Club prides itself on fostering a family-friendly atmosphere within the sport, recognizing that BMX racing is intrinsically inclusive and appeals to all members of the community. The club boasts riders from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds, and it is especially gratifying to witness the growing number of girls actively participating in the sport at all age levels. For further information about Andover BMX Club, its teams, riders, races, training sessions, or social events, interested parties are encouraged to reach out to the club representative, explore their social media channels, or visit their relatively new website.