The 2023 Fifteen BMX ‘Pro’s Pro of the Year’

The 2023 Fifteen BMX ‘Pro’s Pro of the Year’

It’s the second year of the Fifteen BMX ‘Pro’s Pro of the Year’ award, and we hear you, not another Pro Award … but this one is slightly different. The only people who are eligible to vote are the top 30 UCI Ranked Elite Men and Women, and a handful of others who would have their finger on the pulse, mostly, recently former World Class Elite riders, some of whom are now in the coaching business.

Fifteen BMX Pro's Pro of the Year Logo

All voting is anonymous, which we hope, and we’re pretty sure it did, eliminated any friendship bias. While voting, some included explanations as to why they voted the way they did, and we’ve included some of those below … also anonymous. We want to thank everyone who took the time to vote!

So, who did the pros vote for in 2023, who’s the ‘Pro’s Pro of the Year’ … like the 2022 vote, the outcome in 2023 was decisive. A testament to the year both winners have had …

Male ‘Pro’s Pro of the Year’ is



In 2022 Romain finished the UCI World Cup series with 798 points, this year he amassed a massive 3543 points with 5 wins and 2 second places! He also had a pretty good weekend in Glasgow at the UCI World Championships, taking the Rainbow Jersey back to France.

2023 Fifteen BMX Pro's Pro of the Year Romain Mahieu
Female ‘Pro’s Pro of the Year’ is



In what some were calling a comeback year, and to be honest, we were surprised, Saya pulled off 5 UCI World Cup wins and 2 second place finishes. Saya also won the Oceania Championships in New Zealand earlier in the year and the Australian National Championships at Shepparton in November. We shouldn’t forget that 4th at the World Championships in Glasgow.

2023 Fifteen BMX Pro's Pro of the Year Saya Sakakibara

The men’s top three podium was rounded out by the USA’s Cam Wood in second and the USA’s Kam Larsen and France’s Joris Daudet, who had a phenomenal year by anyone’s standards, in a dead heat for the third step.

On the women’s side, it was GB’s Olympic Champion, Beth Shreiver, who took the second step on the podium, with a three-way tie in third between with Zoe Claessens, Merel Smulders and #11 Alise Willoughby, all polling the same voting numbers.

2023 Fifteen BMX Pro's Pro of the Year Romain Mahieu and Saya Sakakibara

Romain Mahieu has been super consistent and kept a cool head throughout the whole season, very very impressive in such a stacked class. Saya Sakakibara had some great battles, but like Romain, she’s great at keeping a cool head and managed to finish off the season so consistently!”


Romain Mahieu … I am really impressed with the way he was able to turn around a disappointing year to consistently win World Cups. His first ever Worlds final and he went out and won it. He has this cool, calm confidence that is just so classy, and I admire so much. For women, I will pick Merel Smulders. For just always being in the mix and being a fun character at the BMX races.”


“Cam Wood! Coming back from injury and showing up in Argentina like he hadn’t skipped a day. Impressed! Alise Willoughby, a Timeless Champion. Over and over again, she proves that age is simply a number.”


“Romain Mahieu, he won almost everything and was really consistent all year. He was the best all year.  Cameron Wood, because he came back from injury and managed it to win from Joris and Romain and of course everyone else. They were dominating every race. He was the only one who won from them this year. So, I think that’s special.”


“Romain Mahieu, he was just the best all season long.  Female … Saya Sakakibara, really cool to see how she bounced back from her head Injuries.”


“Kam Larsen, the newly crowned king of South America this year!”


“Daudet, incredibly consistent throughout the year with World Cups, World Champs and USA BMX. And Sakakibara, stepped it up big time after rough couple years.”


“Mahieu and Saya are the Pro off the year! They won the ranking with a lot of wins and won when the pressure was higher than ever.”


“My pick would be Romain Mahieu because he has had one of the most dominant years we’ve ever seen, the level he rode at was just crazy and we maybe won’t see that ever again. And Saya for women, we all know her story and to see her at the top of his game is just impressive after what she had to overcome.”

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