Mongoose BMX pro Nikita Ducarroz took home an amazing 2nd Place finish at the UCI BMX Freestyle World Championships in Montpellier, France! She put together an amazing run after bouncing back from a crash in her qualifying run. We caught up with the Team Swiss Olympian after her big day.
How did it feel riding a big event again?
NIKITA DUCARROZ: It was pretty nerve wracking to be at such a huge event after 19 months, especially because it was the world championships AND the only event we would have before Tokyo in July. Once we arrived however, it was as if we never stopped. Jumping right back in and getting to hang out with all the other riders from around the world. It really put such a big smile on my face to see everyone again. I felt a lot more prepared than in 2019 now that I had time in 2020 to progress and really work on some basics that have helped me be able to navigate a course better. Practice sessions were so much fun and minus the crazy contest nerves, seeing what I could do in my runs was fun as well!
When you have a bad run what do you do to get yourself ready for the next one.
NIKITA: In my first run of qualifying, I actually slide out on a straight jump. I’ve never fallen in qualifying before (especially not even doing a trick) so it shook me up a bit, but I still managed to get a decent score because I kept going, and then a better score on my second run so it was enough to put me through to finals. At that point when it’s the first run and you have run #2 coming up pretty fast, all I could do was shake it off and remind myself that I know what to do. Full focus and stay on the bike. Luckily it worked out.
What was the vide at this event between the other riders?
NIKITA: The vibe at the event was pretty much the same as before. I think sometimes now that there are like “national teams” there can be a bit of animosity between the countries right before competition, but at the end of the day we were all homies first just sharing a session, so I think the riders themselves do a good job of keeping that vibe alive even with all the big organizations coming into the scene.
What are you doing between now and the Olympics to prepare?
NIKITA: Now its 5 weeks until Tokyo, so I’ll just be heading back to North Carolina to continue riding every day as well as hitting the gym. Just gotta stay sharp, stay safe, and have fun until then! I will fly back to Europe right before Tokyo for some last-minute training and to fly out with the Swiss Olympic Team and my coach Daniel. It’s getting real now for sure. Nerves are high just thinking about such a huge event coming up but I’m just going to try and enjoy it!
How has your coach Danial Wedemeijer helped you?
Daniel has been such an amazing addition to my riding and life. Having lived with him and his girlfriend Lotte (and baby Mick!) for a bit and then continuing to train with him from afar during the pandemic really brought my riding to a better level. Just having someone to push me, keep me accountable, bounce ideas off of and also just ride with made such a difference. Off the bike as well, having someone with so much experience to mentor me helped me a lot. They are 100% my family now and I can’t imagine my life without them. I count myself very lucky because it’s not every day you can find someone that takes the time to understand you, your good traits and your bad, to fully be able to guide and mentor you to be a better version of yourself. At contests, it’s really awesome having a coach because it allows me to have someone to talk about my runs with, figure out what lines work best, and just give that extra bit of moral support.