Penticton BMX rider Brody McLean, who competed in the 2017 World Championship in Rock Hill, U.S.A., earned a bronze medal at the Canadian BMX Championship in Calgary last weekend. Lee Cejalvo photo

Osoyoos BMX rider earns bronze in championship

Osoyoos’ Brody McLean takes bronze at Canadian Championship

Osoyoos’ Brody McLean learned a valuable lesson competing in the 2017 Canadian BMX Championship in Calgary last weekend.

“I should never give up because I can always make it back up on the rest of the track,” said McLean, a member of the Penticton BMX Club.

McLean, nine, placed sixth among nine riders in the Cruiser 12 and under race, then surged from the back of the pack in the 9 male to earn a bronze medal. McLean wanted first, since he finished in top spot in his previous five races, until the final. McLean said he had a bad gate and then came out of the first corner last, before being able to climb his way a podium position. McLean believes he would have had a better result had he taken a different lane, but a rider next to him moved over, giving him nowhere to go.

“I had a great time there. It was a fun experience,” said McLean, who went into the championship with the mentality to win.

Related: Osoyoos BMX rider races to the top at nationals

There was disappointment, but that disappeared quickly after knowing what he accomplished. He also loved the track they raced on in Calgary, which was technical.

At the start of August, McLean was in Rock Hill, Calif. for the Union Cycliste Internationale World Championships. While he did not return with a world plate, he raced well against the best BMX riders.

“It was a big thing for me. It was probably one of the biggest races I’ll ever do,” he said. “It was super fun, but also at the same point, sort of scary. I was going against the best in the world.”

McLean raced five times over two days against 110 riders in his age group. More than 4,000 competed in the championship in different divisions. What McLean got out of that is knowing he can keep up with the best. He feels he was one of the best. McLean’s mom Kirsten said she felt he performed really well against.

“It was really amazing,” she said of the event.

Kirsten felt her son learned from seeing the other riders dedication, especially as he went in with low confidence because of an up and down season. McLean has taken part in clinics to improve his riding ability. He also goes to Kelowna every Wednesday to race more as he loves it and meeting people.

“It’s really about fun,” she said. “He races his best when he’s having fun.”