2022 BMX Nats
National Championships

Sharrah and Vaughn Win Elite BMX Racing National Titles in Tulsa

By: Angelina Palermo  May 16, 2022

Mckenzie Gayheart and Jesse Welch take the first-ever U23 National Championship wins and Keiley Shea and Ethan Popovich grab the Junior titles.

The BMX Racing community gathered in Tulsa, Okla. at the brand-new Hardesty National BMX Stadium right next door to the USA BMX National Headquarters over the weekend. This was the first national held on the new track and racers were excited to get their first laps on the new build.

On Sunday, the Americans stepped up to the 8-meter hill to compete in the USA Cycling National Championship in the Elite, U23, and Junior categories. This was the first-ever U23 field since the category is now officially recognized by the UCI as a way to bridge the gap between Junior and Elite racing.

After a morning full of motos, it all came down to the main event. In the past 12 seasons, since the National Championships have contended on the 8-meter supercross hill, the Elite Men’s National Championship sleeve has been worn by one of three Olympians, Connor Fields, Nic Long, and Corben Sharrah. Fields was out this year due to his injury from the Tokyo Olympics, and Long has retired to the Vet Pro class, leaving Sharrah as the only one left in the group to keep the tradition going.

In the Elite Men’s race, the former World Champion Corben Sharrah (Tucson, Ariz.; Daylight) took the holeshot and never looked back grabbing yet another national title. He narrowly beat out Kamren Larsen (Bakersfield, Calif.; Haro Bikes) and Lucas Howes (Tempe, Ariz.; Premier Racing National Team) who finished in second and third, respectively.

In the Women’s race, the Elites, U23s, and Juniors were all run in the same heat, but were scored in their respective categories. The battle was on between Daleny Vaughn (Tucson, Ariz.; DK Bicycles) and Felicia Stancil (Lake Villa, Ill.; Factory SSquared). Vaughn has been on fire since she won the Grand Nationals in November, while Stancil has been recovering from a dislocated hip and fractured femur from a race earlier in the year. Nonetheless, it was great to see them racing elbow-to-elbow on the track. Stancil grabbed the holeshot, but Vaughn made the pass as they came out of turn one. The two were side by side the whole third straight, but Vaughn was able to create some distance to bring the stars-and-stripes home to Tucson with Sharrah.

In the U23 races, Jesse Welch (Riverside, Calif.; Box Components) and Mckenzie Gayheart (Fort white, Fla.; Full Tilt/ Radio) walked away with victories in the inaugural event. For the Juniors, 16-year-old Ethan Popovich (Vaparaiso, Ind.; DK Bicycles/ Duo Brand) and Keiley Shea (La Habra, Calif.; 316 Racing/ DK) earned the red, white, and blue sleeve in their respective classes. This group has a bright future ahead of them!

Next up on the USA BMX schedule is Music City Nationals in Nashville and the first UCI BMX Racing World Cup of the season in Glasgow, UK all taking place over May 27-29, 2022.

Full Results

Top row left to right: Corben Sharrah, Mckenzie Gayheart, and Ethan Popovich.

Bottom row left to right: Daleny Vaughn, Jesse Welch, and Keiley Shea.