Saturday, July 23, 2016

Zach Newman...small town bmx vert outsider, unknown and unsponsored shocks at the BMX Worlds...

Everyone loves an underdog, that's why Zach Newman's recent fourth place finish on the vert ramp at the BMX Worlds is so popular. Unsponsored, unknown and "under the radar" has been the theme for the 26 year old small town Kentucky native. "It's hard to break-in, so many contests are invite only, and if you are not connected through agents, insiders or sponsors it's nearly impossible to get a look", says Newman, who has been the first alternate (#9 of eight riders) for the prestigious XGames for the past three years straight. "I knew I could compete with those guys if I could just get the chance to ride, so I borrowed $1500 from my parents for a plane ticket to England in hopes of proving myself at the BMX World Championships". The BMX Worlds is an "open competition" for bike riding extreme athletes and this year was held in conjunction with the three day outdoor NASS Music and Sports Festival in the UK. A far away second in terms of money, exposure and prestige to ESPN's Xgames, yet, the BMX Worlds featured all the heavy hitters of the Vert Ramp, their sponsors and the international prime time coverage that follows. Newman who just missed the podium by a couple of points, seemed to be the crowd favorite. "Haha, I've made so many friends here in England, I camped with the kids and hungout, It's been a blast!". Newman said there was enough prize money to cover the loan and that hopefully the risk was worth the reward in terms of future support and sponsorship. While most of the other athletes stayed on in the UK to see the sites, Zach was on a plane the next day headed back to Kentucky and his 9 -5 job as a mechanic at the local bike shop. "Hey, I have a job and I need the money" said the smiling Newman. If hard work and perseverance pays off we will see Zach Newman on the Podium very soon! Zach would like to THANK his wife Rachel, his parents, Resers Bicycle Outfitters (for the time off), Ollies Skatepark (they let me ride for free) Woodward Camp (extreme sports heaven on earth), FIT Bikes (they help me with bikes and parts) and everyone else who has supported me along the way, the trip so far has been awesome!

you can follow Zach on Instagram @zachfullface

Billy Chadwick @localbmxmaguk