2024 BMX Worlds Day 1 1130x600
Team USA

24 Athletes Advance to Quarter Finals at the 2024 UCI BMX Racing World Championships

By: Angelina Palermo  May 17, 2024

With Olympic qualifying on the line, the Americans are showing their speed ahead of the final day of the World Championships

The 2024 UCI BMX Racing World Championships returned to the United States in Rock Hill, S.C. Not only is the World Championship on home soil, but it marks the final chance for Olympic qualifying points for Nations and individual riders prior to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. 27 American athletes qualified for the World Championship and put on a show for the hometown crowd. Friday marked the first round of qualifying across all categories, and the day concluded with eight finals for the Men’s Junior, U23, and Elite categories. 24 athletes will move on to the final day of racing tomorrow, across both the men’s and women’s categories.


Ava Corley (La Mirada, Calif.; Tangent/ Rift/ Rockstar Racing Team) will be the one to watch tomorrow as one of the top ranked Juniors in the field. She rode away in her heat today and will be looking to keep that speed tomorrow. Rita Fedewa (Fort Collins, Colo.; Impact BMX Racing) and Savanna Stokes (Las Vegas, Nev.; Mongoose Bikes) both finished third in their heats, advancing to the next round. Alexis Alden (Peachtree City, Ga.; Albe’s Bike Shop) won her Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) and will also advance.


After winning the last UCI BMX Racing World Cup in Tulsa, Okla., McKenzie Gayheart (Fort White, Fla.; Factory Full Tilt/ Radio) has her eyes set on another win this weekend, especially after winning her heat race. The rest of the U23 women would also advance with Jacy Moore (Port Orchard, Wash.; Impact BMX Racing) finishing third behind Gayheart, and Keiley Shea (La Habra, Calif.; 316 Racing) and Breanna Winter (Antelope, Calif.; Tangent/ Rift/ Rockstar Racing Team) both qualifying through the LCQ.


The U.S. Elite Women showed their dominance tonight, with all advancing straight to the quarter finals tomorrow. Felicia Stancil (Lake Villa, Ill.; Factory SSquared/Answer) and Alise Willoughby (Saint Cloud, Minn.; Team Toyota/ Daylight Cycle Co.) both won their heats. Willoughby was accompanied by Daleny Vaughn (Tucson, Ariz.; DK Bicycles) and Lexis Colby (Surprise, Ariz.; Supercross BMX) in her heat, with the three sweeping the top three spots in their heat. Payton Ridenour (Pottstown; Penn.; Mongoose Bicycles) finished third and Carly Kane (Guilford, Ind.; Huffy Bicycles) finished fourth in their respective heats.


The squad of Deegan Brown (San Jose, Calif.; Supercross BMX), Sean Day (Tacoma, Wash.; Factory Full Tilt/ Radio), Bryton Bailey (Henderson, Nev.), and Cedric Cade (Henderson, Nev.; Impact BMX Racing) all transferred straight from the first round to eighths. Bailey would be the only one to miss out on advancing after finishing fifth in his heat.


All four U23 men moved onto eighths including: Weston Meurlot (New Smyrna Beach, Fla.; 110% Nutrition BMX Race Team), Patrick (PJ) O’Brien (Punta Gorda, Fla.; Davis Racewear), Ethan Popovich (Valparaiso, Ind.; Haro Bikes), and James Cutter Williams (Potomac Falls, Va.; Tangent/ Rift/ Rockstar Racing Team). They went on to ride strategically and advance to tomorrow’s racing with Williams winning his heat.


In the Elite Men’s race, all four men moved on to the evening session. In eighths, Jeremy Smith (Seminole, Fla.; Hyper Bicycles) rode one of the fastest laps of the day riding in second and passing for the win on the third straight away. Corben Sharrah (Tucson, Ariz.; Daylight Cycle Co.) rode to second out of the gate having a clean run to advance to the next day of racing. Cameron Wood (Peoria, Ariz.; Mongoose Bicycles) had a perfect lap out of the gate and is also moving forward. Unfortunately, Kamren Larsen (Bakersfield, Calif.; Factory SSquared/Answer) hit his pedal and crashed in turn one ending his world championship campaign early.


Racing will resume tomorrow at the Rock Hill BMX Supercross Track at 2:00pm ET. Watch racing live Peacock.