BMX star Reynolds picks her battles for fourth Olympics

Joel Gould |

Three-time Olympian Lauren Reynolds (l) trains ahead of the UCI BMX World Cup races in Brisbane.
Three-time Olympian Lauren Reynolds (l) trains ahead of the UCI BMX World Cup races in Brisbane.

BMX racing veteran Lauren Reynolds has been to three Olympic Games and the lessons learned have her daring to dream of a podium spot in Paris this year.

The 32-year-old finished fifth in the final at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, equalling Australia’s best women’s result in Olympics BMX racing, joining Caroline Buchanan who placed fifth in London in 2012.

Reynolds will contest rounds three and four of the UCI BMX Racing World Cup in Brisbane on Saturday and Sunday in the women’s elite category as she targets a fourth Olympics and a podium finish.

Lauren Reynolds
Lauren Reynolds (2R) is out to improve on her fifth place at the Tokyo Olympics. (Martin Rickett/AAP PHOTOS)

“I still haven’t nailed it. Fourth time … maybe we will, maybe we won’t. Every time we have gotten closer,” she said.

“Last time (in Tokyo) was fifth. I believe in myself and I feel as though there is a little bit more in there still.

“There is always pressure. There are younger riders coming through and there are expectations being the veteran I guess.

“You can use that to your  advantage. I try to do that and know that this is not my first rodeo.” 

Reynolds has a stable support team around her that has provided continuity from Tokyo through, hopefully, to Paris.

“Every Olympics I have been to has been a different journey with different people around me. This will be the first time I’ve had the same group for two cycles, which is really important,” Reynolds said.

“I think every BMX racer should have the same mentality for the most part. It is a very cut-throat sport and it is over very quickly. Things can change very quickly. 

“I have got a different perspective to what I had 12 years ago and that experience I can fall back on.”

Reynolds said there were tactical approaches for Paris that would vary from what she might have done as a younger rider, but she has no regrets about all her experiences over the years.

“I will pick and choose my battles a lot more. which is what I think will get me to where I want to be in the long run … hopefully,” she said.

“It is the same approach where I am still going to show up on the day and perform.

“My approach to the sport and my relationship to the sport (has changed). If I did it all again I would probably change some things, but at the same time I wouldn’t.”

AAP