Langley’s Drew Mechielsen returned to the track with the resumption of international-level BMX racing in Verona, Italy on May 8 and 9, aiming to qualify for the Olympics (Nico van Dartel/special to Langley Advance Times)

Langley’s Drew Mechielsen returned to the track with the resumption of international-level BMX racing in Verona, Italy on May 8 and 9, aiming to qualify for the Olympics (Nico van Dartel/special to Langley Advance Times)

VIDEO: Langley’s Mechielsen top Canadian at Verona BMX competition

Sport has been on hold for more than a year due to pandemic

Langley’s Drew Mechielsen did the best of any Canadian rider at the resumption of international-level BMX competition at Verona, Italy.

She ranked 14th at the end of the two-day event that wrapped up May 9, leading the rest of the Canadian BMX squad.

It wasn’t enough to suit Mechielsen, who expressed her frustration on social media.

“I definitely didn’t achieve everything I was searching for this weekend, but that’s the way it goes sometimes,” Michielsen commented.

“Onwards.”

Mechielsen and James Palmer, both Elite National champions and Olympic hopefuls, were joined by first-year Elite rider Molly Simpson, as well as Teigen Pascual, who earned the title of Best Junior Rider of the Year in 2020.

Pascual finished 20th in Verona, while Palmer ranked 23rd and Simpson placed 40th.

READ ALSO: A fraction of a second kept Langley BMXer off the podium

It has been more than a year since the 2020 BMX world cup season was cancelled due to COVID-19.

Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) scheduled the first two rounds of the 2021 UCI BMX World Cup, which had been scheduled to take place in Stuttgart, Germany, on May 8, and 9, on the same dates, a year later, in Verona, site of the official Italian and European BMX racing training centre.

The other rounds of the 2021 UCI BMX World Cup will take place in Bogota, Colombia, on May 29 and 30, and in Sakarya, Turkey, on October 23, 24, 30 and 31.

Verona is part of the Olympic qualification process, which includes competitions from 2018 until the end of May at the Colombia World Cup.

Canada is hoping to qualify one man and one woman, which will be confirmed in early June following the world cup, with the squad announced on July 5.

Mechielsen represented Canada at the 2017 and 2018 UCI BMX World Championships, finishing the 2018 World Cup season ranked among the top eight in the overall standings.

She was 2019 Canadian champion in BMX racing.


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