Seitz, 10, headed to world championship

Published 4:00 pm Tuesday, May 8, 2012

William Seitz, who has trained at the BMX track at Oak Mountain State Park for the past five years, competes in the 2011 BMX World Championship in Copenhagen. (Contributed)

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

When 10-year-old William Seitz, who has been training at the Oak Mountain State Park BMX bike track for the past five years, learned he had earned a spot on the Team USA BMX World Championship team, it wasn’t hard for him to find motivation to train.

“He asked ‘If I compete and do well in two classes in the world championship, can I get a guinea pig?’” said William’s father, Bill. “He’s like any other 10-year-old kid. You don’t want them to grow up too fast.”

Since he began riding a little more than five years ago, William has risen in the BMX skill ranks from novice to intermediate to expert. To reach the expert level, William and his family have put in countless hours of practice at the OMSP BMX track.

“I’d say we are at the track three or four days a week,” said Bill Seitz, who has been BMX racing for more than two decades.

However, William was forced to bring his training inside in March after he suffered a broken arm. Since then, he has been training on a stationary bike inside his Vestavia Hills house.

“It’s been a journey all the way through. This is the first big injury he’s had,” Bill Seitz said.

William is set to have his cast taken off a few weeks before he competes in the 2012 BMX World Championship in Birmingham, England. This year will mark the second straight year William has competed in the World Championship.

“I can’t even explain how it makes you feel to see your kid roll out in a Team USA national jersey to compete in front of 6,000 people,” Bill Seitz said. “As a parent, how do you get more proud of your kid than that?”

The Seitzes held a fundraiser on May 3 at Yogurt Lab in Vestavia Hills, and will hold another fundraiser at Buffalo Wild Wings in Alabaster from 6-10 p.m. on May 14 to help offset the cost of the trip to England.

During the fundraiser, William will greet fans while wearing his Team USA jersey, Bill Seitz said.