BMX Brings Big Business to the Quad Cities


It's a big weekend for BMX in the Quad Cities. 

This Sunday will bring the first State Qualifier of the 2013 season for Illinois. It is also bringing the last indoor races of the season at Rock Island's indoor track at the QCAA Expo Center.

In all, about 150 people are expected to take part in the races, which began Friday night.

"State Qualifiers bring in people from all over the place. We'll probably have some Indiana people in, Iowa for sure, (and) Illinois. There's one guy that flies in from Connecticut to race this race," Paul DePauw, Rock Island Indoor BMX and East Moline BMX Track Operator, said.

And all those people - along with their families and other fans that come along to cheer them on - spend their money in the Quad Cities economy.

"There will always be an economic impact because families, even traveling short distances, will need to find meals at restaurants and put gas in the gas tanks of whatever vehicles they are driving," explained Joe Taylor, Quad Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau President and CEO.

But all of this is small potatoes compared to what we'll see this summer when the East Moline BMX Speedway hosts a 2013 USA BMX National Competition July 19-21.

It will be the first national race ever to be held in the Quad Cities Area. It will also be the biggest by far.

"We are expecting some 1,500 riders and 5,000 spectators who will make the Quad Cities their home for three or four days," Taylor said.

The estimated economic impact of that event: $2.8-Million!

"It's great that we can showcase our facility and the area and hopefully watch local riders take care of some business out there," DePauw said.

This weekend's races are just the starting gate for good things to come.

If you want to catch this weekend's BMX action, you still have time: Races begin Saturday at 4 p.m. and at 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

All of the races are free to watch and open to the public.


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