A local mountain biker topped his section for the 2022 BC Cup Downhill Series after riding the final race last weekend.
The series was a collection of events across the province where runners accumulated points. Brock Hawes competed in the men’s junior expert division and found himself leading in points early in the summer.
He’s just returned from the last BC Cup event at Coast Gravity Park in Sechelt, BC, confirming his spot as first in the men’s junior expert section this season.
“It’s a pretty fast class with a lot of talent,” Hawes said. “It’s been an incredible season… It’s amazing what can happen with a good team. I owe everything to my manager [and] Graviti Driven trainer.
The 17-year-old said he had never heard of downhill mountain biking until his family moved to Sun Peaks in 2018, but as soon as he tried it he fell in love with it.
Hawes entered his first race in 2019. Although he didn’t do well right away, he saw massive improvement the following year.
“In 2020 I went to try and do another race, which was at SilverStar, and I ended up finishing second,” Hawes said. “I was really thrilled with that, so I fell in love with racing right there and went on to do the BC Cups for two years…I’m still improving.”
Hawes’ goal has been to learn to take less risk for cleaner racing. Although he has seen more improvement and success this year, he said he still made a few mistakes throughout the season, including a few crashes during races.
Around mid-season, just before the Canadian Downhill Mountain Bike Championship at the Kicking Horse Resort, Hawes was riding a steep track on his day off when he crashed.
“It was just a stupid accident and I just smashed a rock with my armpit,” Hawes said. “I rode the rest of the track – crashed at 17 minutes and rode up to 26 minutes. Then I took off my jersey and disengaged, and a friend of mine said I was bleeding.
Hawes realized his armpit was open and would require stitches, which meant he couldn’t compete in the Kicking Horse Nationals.
“The adrenaline rush just hit me. It really sucks because if I got on the podium at the Nationals, I would have gotten an invite to go to the Worlds,” Hawes said. had different thoughts. Now that I have the general classification, I should receive an invitation for the World Cup next season.
Moving forward, Hawes said he is looking for sponsors to help him train and achieve more success at the World Cup. Next year, he will also start organizing fundraisers to help him pursue his goals.
To see photos or videos of Hawes, visit his Instagram at @brock_hawes.