WA champion No.6 in world

Zoe KeenanGeraldton Guardian

He left Geraldton as a seven-time State champion and came back ranked sixth in the world for his age, but Corey Taylor remains humble as he tackles his Olympic dream one step at a time.

Corey has returned from the US with an extra four trophies for the shelf but his prize possession is now a 2017 BMX World Championship title.

The 15-year-old Strathalbyn Christian College student raced against the world’s best over two days at the BMX World Championships in South Carolina last month.

On day one of racing, Corey came within the top 32 out of 101 riders in the cruiser division, in which riders use 24-inch wheels.

In the main event — 20-inch wheels — Corey smashed through three qualifying races, taking him to the finals, where he needed to finish in the top four each time.

In his 16th final he came first, in his eighth final he came fourth, in his quarterfinal he came third and in a gripping semifinal, he came third, which mum Elaine said she was the most nervous watching.

“I knew if he didn’t make top four in his semifinal then it was all over,” she said.

Earning himself a spot in the final race against the top eight from 152 riders, Corey finished sixth overall.

“I’m really happy with my results,” he said.

“I wasn’t too nervous, and as the day went on, I got more confident with the track and riding it.

“I’m taking it all one race at a time and now I’m world ranked there’s more recognition so my goal is still the 2024 Olympics.”

Corey has had the opportunity to race at world titles before but he has been holding out for a US world title.

“Riding in America is the dream for anyone in BMX,” he said.

“It’s huge over there and just the place to do it. Before the races I thought I’d do really well but when I got there and saw the competition I was shocked.

“There were 32 American riders in my age group and they were like men, really tall with beards, so it was intimidating.

“It’s a pretty physical sport so you need strength.”

In the end, Corey’s skills outshone his competitors’ and not one of the American riders in his age group got through to the final race.

The only WA riders to make the finals were Lauren Reynolds, who came seventh in the Elite women’s final, and Corey.

“I was absolutely ecstatic at Corey’s achievement,” Mrs Taylor said.

“It’s awesome that a country kid goes up against the world’s best and comes out sixth in the world.”

Corey is hoping to race at next year’s world title in Baku, Azerbaijan.

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