Roberts, Benegas, and Marino Transfer to BMX Freestyle Finals at the 2022 Urban Cycling World Championships
November 10, 2022
Reigning World Champion Hannah Roberts vies for her fourth World Title as she takes the top spot in qualifying.
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates /ENDURANCE SPORTSWIRE/ – The Elite Women’s BMX Freestyle Park Qualifying kicked off the 2022 UCI Urban Cycling World Championships.
Twenty-five women were on the start list, six representing the United States. Team USA women’s roster included: Hannah Roberts (Buchanan, Mich.; Hyper BMX), Perris Benegas (Reno, Nev.; Haro BMX), Angie Marino (Buffalo, N.Y.; Cult Crew), Chelsea Wolfe (Lake Park, Fla.; GT Bicycles), Bethany Hedrick (Ft. Mitchell, Ky.; GT Bicycles), and Cory Coffey (Ojai, Calif.).
In qualifying, each rider took two runs, with both their runs averaged for a final score, then the top 12 move on to finals. The women stayed relatively conservative in their qualifying runs, hoping to get through clean and make it into the next round. With that said, they still threw down incredible runs, and the finals will be quite the battle for the rainbow stripes.
Three-time World Champion Roberts had the two highest scores averaging 86.10, putting her in the top qualifying spot. Former World Champion Benegas had a late arrival to Abu Dhabi and was not able to get much time on the course, but she still showed off her classic big air. Her average score came to 82.20 putting her in third, only 0.40 behind Olympic gold medalist Charlotte Worthington (GBR). Marino’s tuck no-handers and a 360 over the spine got her an average score of 71.10, placing her in eighth.
Wolfe had a solid first run until she crashed, going over the spine. Her score placed her in 19th, unfortunately missing the mark on the finals. Out of all the World Championships she’s competed in, this was the first final she did not make.
As one of the top amateurs in the USA BMX Freestyle series, Hedrick had her first international contest experience at these World Championships. She found her flow around the course on the bigger ramps and 360’d the spine riding to a score of 40.60. But, at 17 years old, there’s more to come from Hedrick.
The progression of women’s BMX has grown so much over the years and since the sport’s Olympic debut in 2021. Roberts said, “The level of riders and what we’re holding ourselves to is rising, and it definitely adds like an outside pressure, but overall, we just like to have fun. I love to see the progression in the women, and I love to see them push themselves. I love coming to events and having no idea what these other women are about to do, and I just get my mind blown. It helps me step my game up at the contests and at home in training.”
Elite Women’s Qualifying Results:
1. Hannah Roberts (USA) – 86.10
2. Charlotte Worthington (GBR) – 82.60
3. Perris Benegas (USA) – 82.20
8. Angie Marino (USA) – 71.10
19. Chelsea Wolfe (USA) – 50.20
21. Bethany Hedrick (USA) – 40.60
24. Cory Coffey (USA) – 33.00
The women have a break tomorrow while the men prepare for their qualifying runs. With 63 starters, the top 24 will move on to the semi-finals on Saturday. Then both men’s and women’s finals will be on Sunday. Watch the finals live on FloBikes.
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USA Cycling is the national governing body for the sport of cycling and oversees the disciplines of road, track, mountain bike, cyclocross, and BMX. USA Cycling’s mission is to grow participation and engagement with the sport of bicycle racing and achieve sustained international success across all cycling disciplines. USA Cycling supports cyclists of all levels and abilities, from those just beginning in the sport to international caliber athletes. The organization identifies, develops, and selects cyclists to represent the United States in international competition through the support of youth and interscholastic programs, amateur and grassroots bike racing events, athlete development programs, and operational support for cycling clubs, racing teams, and event organizers. USA Cycling has a membership of 80,000, sanctions over 2,500 events annually, and is a member of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) and United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC).