Devo Wrap: Wrapping up the final Junior BMX Development Camp of 2013

The USA Cycling National Development Program (NDP) may be winding down its events for the 2013 calendar year, but the seeds for a successful 2014 are sown daily throughout the year. The latest example of that is the final BMX Junior Development Camp of 2013 that recently wrapped at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif.

The third BMX Junior Development Camp of the 2013 calendar year was held from Sept. 30-Oct. 6.

The camp, which featured a mix of first-time and returning campers, was run by coach Arielle Martin, assistant coach Stan Horton, and rider coach Jordan Miranda. Special guest instructors included former professional BMX riders Steve Veltman and Dr. Jason Richardson. High Performance Director of Sprint Jamie Staff and National BMX Coach James Herrera were present at the camp in supervisory roles.

"This has been the most progressive and motivated group I've had all year," Martin said. "Every single one of the riders has pushed themselves and made gains this week and it's been fun to watch. It was really exciting to see Ryan Pettigrew and Lexa Jones lay down the fastest male and female time trial laps we've seen all year. No doubt we will be seeing some of these kids moving through to the Evolution and elite programs."

For the first-time participants, the camp represents an opportunity to experience the difference in tracks compared to domestic racing, especially the start hill. The returners displayed to Staff a big improvement from their first visit and their continued interest in becoming the next Connor Fields.

Arielle Martin (left) offers the riders pointers in a classroom at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista. (Photo by Jamie Staff)
Arielle Martin (left) offers the riders pointers in a classroom at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista. (Photo by Jamie Staff)
The participants rode primarily on the replica Beijing Olympics Supercross track in Chula Vista.

"This is perhaps the best group of young athletes I've seen in recent camp history," Herrera said. "Everyone was charging the track this morning and great progression was seen throughout the group."

Staff, who won the 1996 BMX world championship, talked to the riders about the extra effort necessary to compete internationally. He also educated the riders on the importance of maintaining a nutritious diet and proper workout technique in the gym.

Staff would like to thank USA BMX for running the qualifying events for these camps. He would also like to thank Chase Bikes, Tioga Tires and Ikonix for their valuable contributions to the program.

Below is a list of the riders who participated in the camp:

Juniors Men
Christopher Abernathy
(Alpine, Calif.)
Michael Boyle (Boise, Idaho/Eight 01-Extreme BMX Pro)
Ponton Cary (Winchester, Va./Powers Bike Shop)
Makieva Hopson (North Las Vegas, Nev./Vendetta-Elite Bicycles)
Damian Ontiveros (Fremont, Calif./510 Bay Area BMXers)
Austin Palasota (Saint Peters, Mo.)
Ryan Pettigrew (Watsonville, Calif./Jr
Benjamin Roberts (Wheaton, Ill.)
Jacob Williams (Sandy, Utah/Teraflex Jeep Mods)
Uhl Woods (Benbrook, Texas)
Justin Yaggy (Isanti, Minn.)

Juniors Women
Courtney Atwater
(Phoenix, Ariz.)
Elida Beeman (Lansing, Mich.)
Shayla Blackmore (Durango, Colo./Phoenix Factory Racing)
Lexa Jones (Peoria, Ariz.)
Kaeli Lixandru (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Crystal Schwartz (Harris, Minn.)
Jenna Spracher (Hampton, Va.)

Check out a huge photo gallery from the camp, featuring pictures of the riders on the track, in the classroom and learning from Martin.

USA Cycling's National Development Programs are supported by the USA Cycling Development Foundation. Support the future of American cycling with an online donation now.


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This Article Updated October 8, 2013 @ 10:07 PM For more information contact: