DACONO — After a little under a year on the job, Amber Lords is stepping down as track operator for the city’s BMX track.
Chris Schumacher, a former team manager for the Dacono BMX team, is set to take over the position this month.
Renee Witty, executive director of the Carbon Valley Recreation District, made the announcement during the Jan. 28 council meeting for Dacono.
“Amber gave it her all in her first year, and with her son no longer participating, she decided to pass the torch,” Witty said. “So we did an interview, and Chris is on board.”
Lords, who lives in Dacono, started as track operator last May. She had volunteered year after year for the BMX sport her 17-year-old son, Paul, has loved from an early age.
“This is our eighth season racing. I’ve volunteered the whole time,” Lords said last year as she prepared to take the reins. “I’m basically the one who knows how to run the moto shed, which sets up the races each week. So it’s basically the business side of the track.”
Schumacher introduced himself to council and recounted his love for BMX racing when he was a teenager.
“But later, when I was about 36, and my son started getting into BMX, and we started coming over here to Dacono,” Schumacher said. “So we got involved as far back as ’04 with the track. I was racing or helping to groom it and take care of it, and I just started taking on more roles as the years have gone on.”
An overload of work has burnt out previous track managers. Before Lords was track operator, Jason Bingham tried to run the track alone.
“Jason tried to do it all, and it was just too difficult,” Witty said.
The Dacono BMX track is owned by the City of Dacono but is run and subsidized by the Carbon Valley Park and Recreation District , which now provides the track operator with a small staff.
“I’m looking forward to the challenges,” Schumacher said. “We want to try to grow the rider membership out there, and make it a big place for people to come out and enjoy the sport of BMX.”
The Carbon Valley Recreation District has steadily increased investment in the track in the past few years. The track was rebuilt in 2011 and then modified in 2012. The district is planning to invest $10,000 in the track this year for improvements, which will be added to funds the city intends to contribute.
Witty said the district is also investing in marketing and personal development by sending Schumacher to the USA BMX conference in Las Vegas this year.
“We’ve never sent anyone to this conference, but he’s going,” Witty said. “We feel the more we are visible to USA BMX, the more the track is visible, and the more we’ll learn to move forward and get a national again.”
BMX racing begins at the Dacono track Saturday, April 14, and will run every Saturday through Oct. 27, weather permitting.
“We have a couple of big races coming up for this year,” Schumacher said. “There’s a big red-line cup that will be coming this way. That should bring a fair amount of out-of-staters into the area.”
The 10-year-old Dacono BMX track is at the south end of town on Forest Avenue.
Contact Ben Wiebesiek at
303-659-2522, ext. 205, or email email@example.com.