Wednesday (July 7) marked the official opening of Quarteira’s new revamped BMX track, which aims to woo top riders and events to the Algarve.
Said Loulé Council in a statement to the press, “along with Portimão, which recently renovated its BMX track, Quarteira can become a destination for many central European athletes.” The local BMX community agrees.
“The Algarve has two top-class tracks, which is important to attract international athletes to train here. French, Dutch and German riders are all going to the south of Spain (Alicante) and we are trying to create a (BMX) hub to bring those athletes here,” said Dário Piedade, president of local club ‘Asas da Cidade – BMX Team’.
Loulé Mayor Vítor Aleixo has celebrated the track’s renovation, saying that Loulé takes pride in being a municipality where several different sports can be pursued.
“BMX is now one of them because the conditions are exceptional,” Aleixo said.
So far, the track is due to welcome stages of regional championships and cups and is vying for a chance to host the final of the Taça de Portugal (Portuguese Cup) on October 3 and 4.
Depending on the epidemiological situation at the time, there are also plans to host an international competition allowing foreign riders to get to know the track.
“Quarteira has a decades-long BMX tradition,” said the local council, stressing that many young talents developed in the town and went on to win national and international titles.
However, in 2015 the track became unable to host several competitions as it no longer possessed the right sizes or conditions.
The revamped track, however, meets the “current demands of the sport’s official entities.”
The 420-metre racetrack is located near two public housing neighbourhoods (Abelheira and Amendoeira) and is also expected to play a role in the “social inclusion” of the youngsters who live there, the council adds.
As it explains, ‘Asas da Cidade’ has played a key role by providing bikes to any child or youngster who wants to give the sport a go.
“It is something that would fill our hearts with joy, as sports are important to the development of youngsters,” said the local mayor.