Sport

Strong showing tipped at state titles

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November 16, 2017

Ready to perform: Shepparton BMX Club will be represented by (back) Austin McNair, Levi Collins, Jamie Mahuika, Lance Mahuika, Cooper Bromley, (front) Nick Salau, Tori May, Tayla Robertson and Gian Renato at the Victorian State Titles this weekend.

BMX in Shepparton is thriving and nine riders will head to Melbourne to make an impact at the Victorian State Titles this weekend.

Heading to Hoppers Crossing for the competitive event are riders that are no strangers to receiving trophies and medals.

Elite rider and Shepparton BMX Club spokesman Levi Collins said there was a strong chance his clubmates would return with more silverware.

‘‘We’ve got a couple of contenders who will run really close to winning, obviously Gian Renato and Cooper (Bromley) should run really well in the junior elite, Jamie (Mahuika) might be a chance to sit on the podium if he has a good day, Tayla Robertson is a good chance,’’ he said.

‘‘Pretty much everyone lining up is a chance to make a podium, if not win, so the representation from Shepparton is really strong.

‘‘They’re determined and they know what they want to achieve, everyone has their own plans and goals.’’

Mahuika will compete alongside his father Lance, while the youngest member in Nick Salau will also have a go.

While most that age rely on training wheels, Salau has been riding down the start hill at the Packham St track since he was two.

Even with Collins’ experience, he said he was still learning from some of the youngest members of the club.

‘‘I can help their skills and what not and they’re not scared to ask and I’m normally asking them ‘what do I do here?’,’’ he said with a laugh.

‘‘That’s where the kids are at these days, their level is unbelievable.’’

But it is not just about the riders lining up at the state titles, with Collins saying BMX was again going through a boom phase as Shepparton had welcomed 10 new members.

‘‘Back in the ‘80s it was huge and I think it’s slowly getting back to where it was,’’ he said.

‘‘Kids are slowly starting to get back off their computers, I think that generation’s hopefully turning around and getting back outside and getting fit and getting active.’’

This year’s state titles begin on Friday and run across the weekend, with 800 riders expected to take part.

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