Two Langdon siblings and a pair of their hamlet colleagues will be representing their community at the 2023 Alberta Summer Games in Okotoks this weekend, in the high-fuelled sport of BMX racing.
Brothers Carter and Kayden Berry (15 and 12, respectively) will be donning the jerseys of Zone 3 (Calgary) as they take on the best BMX racers of the same age groups from across the province.
Other Langdon BMXers competing at the multi-sport games will be Kingsley McHattie, 15, and Jesse Poirier, 12. While Langdon is technically in the catchment area of Zone 2 (Big Country), the four athletes will represent Zone 3 because their home track is in Calgary.
The older Berry, Carter, said he's eager to experience the upcoming summer games, adding it's neat that he'll also get to race in the same competition as his younger brother.
“I think it’s pretty cool that I’ll get to go there with him,” said Carter, who has been racing BMX for nearly five years. “It’s just going to be fun to be with him at the races and practices.”
Carter Berry is currently ranked fifth in Canada for his age group, having picked up the 'N5' plate after racing to a top-five spot in the recent BMX national championships in Quebec. Considering his competitiveness on a national level, he said he's aiming to finish in the top three for his age group in Okotoks this weekend.
While he's three years younger than his older sibling, Kayden has technically been competing in BMX for longer, as he took up the sport at the age of just six. Kayden also competed at nationals in Quebec earlier this month, and is currently the N7 plate-holder.
Like Carter, Kayden said he's hoping for a podium placement at the Alberta Summer Games. But while he loves the competitiveness of race day, the 12-year-old said his favourite aspect of the sport is the social side.
“Just riding with friends, getting to compete, and mostly getting some air on jumps,” he said.
An advantage for the four Langdonites over some of their opponents travelling to Okotoks from afar is that they're already familiar with the BMX track in Okotoks, as they've each raced and trained there plenty of times in the past.
“Okotoks is actually an open track, so the public can use it freely and we’ve gone there during the day to race there,” said Dawn Berry, the two siblings' mother.
“We haven’t been there in a bit, but they race there on Tuesdays sometimes for race nights.”