WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — The Wee-Chi-Tah BMX track saw hundreds of racers Sunday as they compete in two state qualifier events.
BMX racers say the competition is just half of the reason they love getting on the track. For some, like BMX track operator Rick Johnson and announcer and coach Ray Ralston, it’s the lessons and relationships formed off the track that keeps them coming back.
“The BMX community is like a big family you meet so many friends and you just keep them for a lifetime,” said Rick Johnson, Wee-Chi-Tah Track Operator.
Johnson and Ralston say races, like this weekend’s Texas state qualifier, are a chance to bring hundreds from all over the state to compete on the BMX track right here in Wichita Falls.
“It really makes all that hard work worth it because for an event like this we’ll work for two or three weeks every night straight to pull off something like this,” said Ray Ralston, announcer and coach for Wee-Chi-Tah BMX track.
In just one weekend more than 600 racers of all ages put their skills to the test. Racers like 63-year-old Adrianne Chang-Fields, the oldest competitor in both races.
“I like the fact that it keeps me in shape, I like it that it keeps my brain alert and I plan on doing this well into retirement,” said Adrianne Chang-Fields, a racer at Wee-Chi-Tah BMX track.
Ralston says the best part about this sport is seeing the joy it brings to the many competitors young and old.
“My favorite part is the smiles. My daughter for one and a lot of these kids the moment they put on that helmet, the moment they get off the line they’re sweating, they’re tired, they’re sometimes hurting but the smile never goes away,” said Ralston.
Since the Wee-Chi-Tah BMX track is only one of four in Texas, Johnson says it is important to continue these events, welcoming bikers from all over to the area.
“Here in Texas we try to support all the Texas tracks and remain Texas BMX strong here,” said Johnson.
Those at the track want to continue teaching the community life lessons behind BMX racing, one race at a time.
The winners from today’s race will represent Texas at the championship race in Fort Worth Texas coming up in a couple of weeks. You can find information about upcoming races and classes here.