Two years out of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, the U.S. women swept the three podium spots in BMX freestyle park on Sunday in the UCI Urban Cycling World Championships.
Perris Benegas won the competition in Chengdu, China, leading a sweep that included runner-up Angie Marino and Hannah Roberts.
Benegas won the gold medal by scoring a 93.00 on her final run. Marino's top score was 87.8, while Roberts scored 86.3.
“I can’t believe it. I’m just feeding off of everyone’s energy,” Benegas said after her winning run. “It’s an incredible feeling. America rules.”
It was the second podium finish at consecutive world championships for Roberts, who won the 2017 world title and entered the competition as the top-ranked rider in the world cup standings.
BMX freestyle will make its Olympic debut in Tokyo. BMX racing has been part of the Games since 2008.
Four Americans reached the finals in the event in Chengdu. Nina Buitrago finished ninth. No other nation had more than one cyclist in the final.
The Urban Cycling World Championships wraps up with the men’s BMX freestyle final on Sunday.
Paul D. Bowker has been writing about Olympic sports since 1996, when he was an assistant bureau chief in Atlanta. He is sports editor of the Cape Cod Times and a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.