Layne Gibbons

Layne Gibbons

An 8-year-old girl from Grandview will be traveling to Tulsa, OK the week of Thanksgiving to compete in the Grands 2021, a BMX bike racing event.

Layne Gibbons was introduced to riding at a young age by her dad Jasen as they would go to a Richland BMX track while mom went to Costco.

“I love everything two wheels!” said Layne. “Going fast, jumps, railing corners, the excitement before the gate drops, accomplishing new things and reaching goals. It really teaches you how to do hard things as well. When we fall, we get back up and try again.”

She is so good at it, that she has a lot of trophies.

Jasen said he’s been a fan of anything with two wheels for most of his life, but after finding out they could race, the kids wanted to take part.

“It’s nearly impossible to not be having fun on a bike. You have to be 100 percent present and focused when you’re riding so you feel very ‘free’ in the moment. Everyone supports each other and the kids learn many life lessons.”

For Layne, she says her friends think it’s cool and she’s trying to get them to join up.

For now, her focus is on earning her wings, and getting a ‘W’ plate.

Mom Stephanie said that’s when you get sponsored by Red Bull, the ‘wings’, and if you’re one of the top 8 in the world gets you the W.

Layne is the first, but mom and dad will likely be busy going to race tracks a lot for the next several years as all four of their children, including Tate (7 years old), Grayce (5) and Cole (4) are involved.

Layne usually races in a mixed gender environment out of necessity, so she’s excited to race against only girls of her age.

“And I get to experience a new place I’ve never been. I will also be flying my bike with me so that’s a first!”

A big part of the reason she’s getting to go to Oklahoma is the generosity of Andy Bonzi who agreed to pay for her and her folks to fly to the event.

Stephanie is hoping that next year, all her kids qualify, and they can go there as a family.

Kevin Rounce can be reached at 509-837-4500 ext 110 or email krounce@sunnysidesun.com

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