Brodie Mitchell

Meet Brodie the 8 year old BMX racer.

Brodie was 4&1/2 years old when she was watching the Olympics and saw Caroline Buchanan racing BMX.  
Instantly she told her dad she wanted to ride a BMX and they went to the old Belmont BMX track one wet winters day during the July school holidays and rode and rode and rode.  

Her dad, Byron knew that this was a real interest.  As parents we always try to support our children but don’t want to be over zealous or commit the big dollars on a bike if it nots the real deal.

That weekend they watched a club race and by the following Tuesday she was a member of the Geelong BMX club.

In these early days it was not just the support of the local club and her parents, but even as her dad tweeted a pic of young Brodes even the very talented Caroline Buchanan responded and these little sparks can ignite a life time of passion in a sport.

We have often seen the rising cyclists come from a bmx background and its easy to see why.

Firstly the support of the clubs with willing parents on the sidelines, marshalling, starting, running the canteen and getting the whole family involved.

At a BMX event, be it training or racing, you are just there, one venue, many races, many chances to get a better shot at a start or a double or just feeling like you can ride your bike around the whole track and enjoy it.  The rest of the time is quite social and you can watch better riders right there in front of you and see what they do and be inspired.

All in all, it seems to be a great sport to build the foundations of future cyclists, with skills and fitness and fantastic bike handling ability.

brodie start line

Only a week ago Brodie rode in the Victorian School championships at Geelong BMX track and competed in her age category, and many heats later after coming 2nd, 2nd, 2nd and 2nd she came 2nd in the final!  Her good BMX friend came 1st, so she was pretty happy with this.

As I was sitting on the couch talking to Brodie about this day, and about coming 2nd to her friend, it was obvious that the joy was not in the winning or the medal but in the being, the riding, the friendships, the excitement of being on her bike because she can.  

Its just pure innocent love of bike riding with no inflated egos, jealousy or disappointments present.

I can only imagine what such an attitude will transpire to as she gets older, and I know her family and the club will continue to nurture her in this way, allowing her to grow her competitive spirit but not losing this innocence of pure happiness.

Brodie loves riding mostly because it is fun, mostly she loves the jumps and skills.

It was funny when I asked her about training in any sort of weather, it excited her to tell me that unless its “terrible rain”, she wants to keep training.

Her dad, Byron was quick to point out that she is often the last person on the track as training is winding up and its getting dark.  At this stage training can consist of one or two days a week and one day racing on the weekend, which ramps up in the summer when the season is back in full swing.  I suspect this year they might travel a bit more with Brodie getting better and better at the sport.

Byron got into BMX racing because of his daughter, and the father of 3 sporty girls is genuinely happy he did so.  When they first started training together he tells me that he could pump his way round the track and keep up with Brodie as she pedalled, but now he has to put in sneaky pedal strokes to stay with her as she gets faster and more skilful.
Brodie even helped seal the deal for his 40th birthday present with the gift of a new BMX.  The father and daughter deal was further sealed now!

But when Brodie isn't at the BMX track, I wanted to find out what else fills her days…seems there is no problem there.

She loves riding her other bike, a mountain bike at the You Yangs and her fave trail is the new EPIC trail and in her words,

“you go woo woo woo woo woo!”

And if you have ridden the Epic trail you know exactly what she means.
Brodie said she loved exploring little dirt trails and loved the quietness just riding her bike along the river or the waterfront.  But also that it was fun to this with her family.

I also asked her what makes her the happiest, something she would love to do forever and do it everyday.
Her dream is to be a Melbourne zoo keeper during the week and ride bikes on weekends.
She loves tigers but the snow leopard is her absolute favourite.

I asked her about her family and this is what she had to say,
“Mum is emergency teacher & takes Cinder(the dog) for runs on bike.
Dad is just on his trainer in the garage and goes to work and sometimes rides to work.
Alana does ballet, contemporary and stretch, swimming and horse riding.
Layla does gymnastics and swimming.
And I do sometimes mtb, sometimes bmx & swimming!”

Brodie family

I asked her if she gets tired, the answer was …”ummmm yes!”
Brodie knows the whole routine, the family is tight knit and busy.

She gets up around 6am to read and happily admits she is a bookworm and loves Roald Dahl with her favourite book being BFG.

Her yummiest food to eat is Vegemite on toast.
The vegetable she dislikes the most are tomatoes.
She loves fruit and especially Apples.

At school Brodie enjoys creating poems, loves art, but says, “I don't like maths”, definite No!

I asked her what she loved most about being a girl?
After a long pause she agreed that whilst it was good to beat other boys on the bmx track it was even better beating her dad.

Only a few weeks ago she got an upgrade to a new fast lightweight race machine.
She is in love.  

Brodie is a girl that rides a bike, and right now, she is having so much fun being that girl.

brodie and jess

So go get on your bike today and remember the inner glow of being 8, on a new bike, feeling fast and feeling carefree, feeling happy and without a care of what anyone thinks…you ride because it makes you feel GOOD.

Thanks Brodie for keeping it real!