This past weekend in Wellington, New Zealand, the second round of the Red Bull Pump Track World Championship went down and the country’s capital lived up to its reputation of being pretty darn windy. 178 days a year the wind gusts at or above 39mph (63 km/h) in Wellington, and Saturday was one of those 178 days. The wind started off as a northerly and then pulled a 180 around lunch time to finish the day as a southerly. Despite the wind, riders put down some blazingly fast times around the small but well-designed Velosultions pump track. Competitors from as far as Christchurch in the South Island had made the trip, but a win was not going to come easily.
After laying down the 12th fastest qualifying time, local 16-year-old Elliot Smith rode his Kona Shonky though the 32 strong knock out rounds, besting both elite BMXers and fellow mountain bikers. After a day of hard racing (and quite a bit of play in practice), Elliot would finish off in fourth place, qualifying for the Red Bull Pump Track World Championship finals later in the year at an undisclosed location in Europe.