Her trophy shelf is full. But Aleasha Wiebe would have no trouble finding room for an Olympic medal. Or two.
The 15-year-old Cumberland athlete has been riding bicycles since she was three and competing – extremely successfully – in BMX since she was five. That’s the reason she no longer brings trophies home.
“I don’t collect trophies. I have too many of them,” she says with a smile. How many trophies? “More than I can handle,” she laughs. “There’s a lot. We donate them back to the track. We ran out of room.”
Two of the trophies she doesn’t have include those for winning two different divisions at the 2012 provincial championships, held Aug. 25-26 in Vernon.
Wiebe captured top spot in her age group in both the Class (20″) and Cruiser (24″) categories. She is ranked second in Canada in both divisions and will be out to make that No. 1 at the Canadian Grands, Oct. 5-7 in Chilliwack. (She finished second at last year’s nationals).
Wiebe had to race in three Provincial Cup Qualifiers in both divisions go earn a trip to the B.C. championships. An ABA BMX spokesperson clarified the process:
“In Class (20”), her top three scores in the four events she participated in were used to calculate her Provincial points going into the Provincial Cup Final.
“At the Finals, she competed in a class of four riders (ages 15-17). In the first round, she missed qualifying to the main event, but then qualified in the second round. She finished second place in the main event. That, combined with her previous Provincial Cup Qualifiers, put her in position to earn the Provincial Plate #1.
“In Cruiser (24”), her three top scores of the four qualifiers she participated in were used to calculate her Provincial points going into the Provincial Cup Final.
“At the Finals, she competed in a class of three riders (ages 14-15) in a Total Points race. In all three rounds, she came in second behind Mackenzie Mchale-Boulter. Aleasha finished second place overall per our Total Points rules. Her second-place Final finish, combined with her previous Provincial Cup Qualifiers, put her in position to earn the Provincial Plate #1.”
Wiebe lives right across the street from the Coal Hills BMX track in Cumberland, and apart from school (she plays basketball in Grade 10 at G.P. Vanier) splits her time almost evenly between home and track.
Her BMX season never really ends. “I always train and race in the off-season,” she says. That’s why after attending nationals (she’s been going since she was five or six) she might head to Reno in January for American Nationals.
That would be a first for her, but looking to the future – with an eye on the Olympics – it probably will not be the last.
“The Olympics have always been a goal for me. I will be doing more American races. They’re stronger riders and they push me better.”
BMX debuted at the Olympics in 2008. Tony Nyhaug of Coquitlam competed for Canada at the 2012 Summer Games in London, and Wiebe figures the sooner she qualifies to go the better. “It’s better when you’re younger,” she noted.
Wiebe says her older brothers Travis and Jacob raced BMX, which made the sport a natural choice for her. Along with travelling and meeting people, Wiebe says what she likes best about BMX is “beating the boys” when they compete in the Cruiser class.