USA BMX not showing 22s any class

5 09 2012

Responding to the growing interest in 22′ bikes, I’ve heard that USA BMX/BMX Canada will now allow 22″ bikes on the racetrack for the 2013 season.

But only under strict parameters.

Namely, that they can only be used in the cruiser class.

Seems like an odd decision.

I can’t remember the exact rationale…probably because it didn’t make much sense to me…but it seemed to boil down to the importance of maintain the integrity or sanctity of the 20″ class.

But why the rigid adherence to wheel size in the “20 inch class”?

In cruiser, we already have 24s, 26s, BMX cruisers, mountain bikes…you name it.

Why not a slightly bigger wheel size for your “class” bike?

BMX RACING: 22″ wheel BMX first race win in 20″ class Faction Bike Co. from Faction BMX on Vimeo.

I would bet that most people considering (or already buying) a 22″ bike are doing so to replace their 20″ and not their 24″.

In an era where everything on a modern-day BMX race bike has changed spec-wise…handlebar size, top tube length, materials… there still seems to be a slavish devotion to wheel size.

Maybe that’s where the problem lies.

Maybe from here on in, race bikes should just be referred to “class” and “cruiser”…with 22s being part of the “class” segment.

What do you think?

Have your say.




15 responses

5 09 2012

i say put em in with the larger wheel sizes. its well known that bigger wheels roll faster. anyone that needs 22″ wheels to be fast shouldnt hold a competitive edge against 20s. leave the fastest, and most tightly restricted class (20″) uniform, and let other wheelsizes compete accordingly.

i went to a cruiser because i am very tall. the jump to 22″ wheels wasnt significant enough for me to choose it over an xxl 20″ race frame

26 03 2014
tom gunning

if you did not know, the 20×1 3/8 wheel size is approximately one inch larger (overall diameter) than a 20×1.75 wheel. so, does this mean that an expert sized wheel will be faster than a pro size?

5 09 2012

Surely it would make more sense to put them in tte 20″ class because the whole idea of them is that they are will eventually replace 20″ bikes because they are concidered to be more stable. to be honest though i dont see the need for them whatsoever

5 09 2012

Ever ride one?

6 09 2012

Yes, and I am still not sold. Going to try to ride Pepper’s the next time I see him though. But every 22″ I have rode so far did not make me want to replace it with my 20″ or 24″. But that is just me…

6 09 2012

I have. And so far I have not rode any 22″ that got me all hot and bothered. I will try to ride Pepper’s S&M when I see him next. I like my 20″ and my 24″.
As for the racing deal…Theoretically, wouldn’t the 22″ wheel have less rolling resistance making it a faster bike overall? I would be curious to see a lap time of a fast racer at their local track on their 20″. Then have them take laps on the 22″ and then on a 24″. Would be curious to see how lap times are effected.

5 09 2012

Keep in mind that 20″ wheels are not always 20″. It’s an average size that fluctuates depending on tire height.

I don’t really care which race class they’re in. It probably makes sense to put them in cruiser, not because the bike is more like a cruiser, but more because the cruiser class is sort of a “catchall” anyway–i.e. 24″ and 26″. that, plus, the cruiser class tends to be older guys or younger dudes that also race 20″. for older guys, 22″s may be a 20″ replacement (like it is for me), but for younger dudes they’ll probably want to keep their 20″ as well.

5 09 2012

If you maintained the class in a formula that calculated wheel size and gearing (Bigger the wheel, smaller the gear ratio) to make them competitive, then you could theoretically race every bike size together, but, that would never happen. If you add specific classes just for 22″ers, then you will have a mess. I just started racing and my thought is, the more people coming out to race and in the starting gate, the better for us all. Oh, Im turning 43 next week.

7 09 2012

pepper got the indust instead of the s&m.

9 09 2012

sounds like the right decision to me!
If anything over a 20″ is considered a cruiser then its a cruiser, all be it of a smaller devision than a 24″ but they had to come up with something for the new 26″ so why not the 22″?

Oscar Pistorius the double amputee who runs with prosthetic blades was the undisputed Paralympic champion in various running events who also competed in the able bodied events was beaten by a Brazilian in London 2012 a few days ago, why…because the Brazilian had a few centimeters more on the length of his blades and Oscar is not allowed to extend the length of his so that’s it, he might as well quit!

All 20″ BMX racers competing against 22″ may as well quit if 22″ is allowed in the 20″ category. alternatively everyone will move up to 22″ and that will be the end of 20″ until they band 22″ in 20″ races which is what they’ve done.

KInda like back to the future but without the shenanigans!

9 09 2012

The Brazilians name is Alan Oliveira if anyone’s interested.

10 09 2012

Give them their own class and call it a day. The problem is that once you allow a difference in bike sizes and specs, those that run either size bike will complain that the other has an unfair advantage (which there are probably advantages to both). It happened in World Superbike with 750’s vs. 1000 v-twins and then in Moto Gp with 500’s vs. 1000’s. I both cases they allowed new bikes and specs, but tried to restrict them to level the playing field, but that never worked.

27 09 2012

Why does this 20″ & 24″ -v- 22″ debate always turn to racing when none of the companies making these frames actually make a dedicated race frame that takes 22″ wheels. And the very small choice of rims and tyres available in 22″ aren’t ideal for racing either

10 07 2013
Mike Day tries out some bigger wheels | cruiser revolution

[…] Pretty interesting stuff….especially given USA BMX stance that 22″ bikes belong in the cruiser class. […]

30 11 2013

I run cruiser class and would like to run a 20 class but I feel like a monkey f*cking a football on a 20

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