In front of the pack

Lincoln’s Kahahane has won eight BMX races this summer
By: Russ Edmondson The News Messenger
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The victories are piling up for Lincoln BMX racer Nathan Kahahane. Kahahane, 8, was racing on his bike in Arizona over the weekend and placed first in two events at the American Bicycle Association Southwest Nationals. He took the title in the 8 Novice division on Saturday before moving up an age division on Sunday because of a lack of competitors in the 8 Novice group. Kahahane won Sunday’s title as well. “It was awesome and good competition,” said Shannon Kahahane, Nathan’s father. He also placed first at two national events in July during the ABA Summer Nationals at Oak Creek BMX in Roseville. Nathan got involved in BMX racing at the beginning of the summer when his parents, Shannon and Sarah, sent him to the Pro 1 BMX Super Camp in Santa Clara. “We sent him to a camp for BMX racers and he came back a different person,” said Shannon about the four-day camp. “I just heard some of the other dads talking about it and sent him to the camp.” Although Shannon joked that Nathan doesn’t always listen to him, Nathan listened closely at the camp. And it has paid off. Nathan now says that BMX racing is his favorite sport. “I feel pretty fast and I always think I’m going to win and sometimes you just don’t and crash,” said Nathan about his mindset while in competition. “The most fun is winning and (racing with) a whole lot of speed and jumping a lot.” Nathan has now moved up to the 8 Intermediate division and he will compete in the Redline Cup in Atwater later this month. He will also compete in the state championships at Oak Creek BMX in early September. Nathan placed first in July qualifiers for both of these events. He has eight first-place finishes in all. The College Cyclery BMX Team out of Sacramento sponsors him. Shannon used to race bikes as a kid also but things are different now. Now BMX racing is an official Olympic sport. Americans placed second and third in BMX in the Olympics in China. “There are three (Lincoln) families that we’ve gotten involved . . . it’s not too expensive once you get involved. Once you get a bike it only costs $10 to race each time and first to third place get trophies,” Shannon said. “This sport has been around a long time but BMX racing is now in the Olympics. “(Nathan) plays baseball and soccer and all the other sports and those sports are fantastic. But baseball is not an Olympic sport anymore and BMX is.”