The Terrible Ten Tradition

Filed under General on September 11, 2013 | Comment(s)


The scenario has been the same since the beginning - put every fast amateur racer in the country in the World’s widest starting gate and who will get to the first turn first?  Who will be the first ten guy across the finishline? It has always been an honor for any rider to make the Terrible Ten - as much as it’s been one of the most controversial articles in the sport. Anybody can make their own subjective list, and everybody has their own opinions of who should make the TT list. But ultimately, it comes down to the editor of the magazine, to narrow it down to only 10. It’s a tough call, and sometimes you call ‘em right - as that amateur goes on to Pro and Olympic superstardom, and sometimes there are some disappointments - when a rider fades away, quits the sport or is forced to retire after an injury.

The one thing that stands true, though - is that the BMX Action and BMXer versions of The Terrible Ten have been pretty spot-on for recognizing the top Ams in BMX;  many who have Pro No.1 titles and Olympic medals to justify it. In the latest issue of PULL magazine (August/September 2013), editor Jason McGuire proudly brings back the prestige of being a Terrible Ten’er - so we thought it’d be a great opportunity to go through the entire history of Terrible Ten picks and pics, and see how they’ve lasted (or not lasted) the test of time.


The very first Terrible Ten feature appeared in the May 1983 issue of BMX Action - and was shot during the ABA Super nationals in Lake Elsinore. It included some pretty hefty names in the Amateur ranks, who would live up to Bob Osborn’s predictions and all become top Pro racers. 

Among those in that first TT were:

  • Richie Anderson: 2-time No.1 Am - who wouldn’t turn Pro for a couple of more years, and would be a contender for the No.1 Pro Cruiser cups. Was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1994.

  • Eddy King: Diamondback’s superstar Am who would be a regular in any 80’s & early 90’s Pro main. Was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1989.

  • Paul Gossarau: Possibly the “last pick” in this 10, who had his flashes of fastness as an Amateur, but never went on to Pro superstardom.

  • Gary Ellis Jr: Riding for Kuwahara at the time, Ellis would move on to Huffy the following year, turn pro and then become GT’s poster-child as a 4-time No.1 Pro.Was inducted in to the Hall of Fame in 1998.

  • Mike Poulson: While best known for losing the No.1 Amateur title all by himself, Poulson was predicted to become the next big thing in AA-pro. He did turn pro and was a consistent main maker until his retirement, but lack of sponsorship after Schwinn pulled out from the racing market, caused Mike’s early retirement from the sport and we never got to witness him at his full Pro potential.

  • Charlie Williams: One of the fastest Ams on the Hutch team, Charlie also disappeared from the scene when his sponsor (Hutch) did. These days, he still makes a rare appearance in the starting gate whenever he can.

  • Rich Farside: As part of the legendary Diamondback team, Farside went on to turn pro and is still seen on occasion at a USA BMX national racing in amateur cruiser classes.

  • D.D. Leone: The quiet Cajun looked intimidating but was really a gentle giant. Once he turned pro, he rode for Free Agent and Kastan, and was always more of a factor in pro cruiser than in double-A. D.D. was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2009.

  • Nelson Chanady: The Floridian was ferociously fast and famous for his 10” tall signature bars from GT (ironically, re-created as the “Perfect 10” by S&M). Nelson’s Pro career never got the big push as the others in this Terrible Ten.

  • Darrell Young: Still talked about today for having Tyler Whitfield-like style and smoothness, JMC’s DY would turn pro, amaze all who watched him race, and went on to win a No.1 Pro Crusier title while racing for SE. Was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2003.

Today, five of the first generation of Terrible Ten are in the BMX Hall of Fame. One rider in particular - Gary Ellis, would go on to become the most winningest male AA-pro in BMX history, and the holder of four No.1 Pro titles in ABA (USA BMX) and multiple World Championships. 


Seeing how the first Terrible Ten had gone on to such greatness, new BMXA editor gOrk decided to bring it back with a whole new, fresh crop of elder Ams. While some might claim that the original TT was the greatest ever, it’s hard to argue the impact that this group had on the sport throughout the 90’s. Six of these ten would go on to dominate AA-pro mains, and two of them (King & Townsend) would wind up with No.1 Pro cups on their mantle - both as Rookie Pros.

This was also the beginning of the Terrible Ten disclaimer: “If you think you should be in here, PROVE IT.”

  • Darwin Griffin: Full of power, Boss Racing’s younger Griffin brother was pretty unbeatable at the time. He did go pro, but never quite became the winning factor, mostly due to the ol’ lack of sponsorship excuse.

  • Doug Davis: The former ABA No.1 Amateur (1983) and lifelong Diamondback factory rider was always a top contender in his age class. Having to chose between a career in MLB baseball or pro BMX, he chose to play for a few years in the triple-A minor leagues.

  • Kevin Hull: Perhaps best known for his cameo in the movie “Rad,” Texas’ “Sheepdog” rocked the Am classes on both cruiser and 20” for Factory GT, and then was Auburn Bicycle’s original pro.

  • Billy Griggs: “Mr.Bill” is getting inducted into the BMX Hall of Fame this year; which says a lot about his illustrious career. He made every one of his Grands mains, and came awfully close a couple of times to winning the No.1 Pro title - only to wind up with a few No.2 and No.3’s.

  • Charles Townsend: Chuck-T is one of only a few who have won the No.1 Pro title in their rookie season. Charlie turned pro the following year and would be a consistent podium figure in the next three decades - racing Pro in the 80's, 90's and early 00's.

  • Rick Palmer: One of the two Diamondback riders in this TT, Nor Cal’s Palmer had killed it the year before in NBL and was tearing it up on a 24”. He did turn pro, rode for Skyway and made quite a name for himself in double-A.

  • Eric Carter: Out of the entire TT this time, EC was the youngest - and at the time, many people questioned the 15 year old’s inclusion as being one of the ten fastest Ams. That same year, he won the ABA No.1 Amateur title, and instantly proved his worthiness.

  • Jameson Hendler: Riding for Schwinn, Michigan’s Hendler was owning it in NBL and had shown promise in the ABA; however his future as a Pro never grew to that of Townsend or King’s..

  • Mike King: The 16 year old Mike King already had one No.1 Am title to his name, and was in his final days of riding for Huffy - well on his way to BMX superstardom and an impressive pro career.
    King would go on to win a No.1 Pro title in his Rookie year, before moving on to ruling in the world of mountain bike racing. After an illustrious Pro career, Mikey would take a job at USA Cycling as the Director of their BMX Olympic program - managing Team USA at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics.

  • Sean Callihan: What got the Zeronine-sponsored Californian in to this Terribleness, was the fact that he was the reigning ABA National No.1 Cruiser rider. Callihan had potential to go places in BMX, but seemed to have gotten burned out on the sport early.

As of 2019, half of this Terrible Ten have made it into the National BMX Hall of Fame - Griggs, Townsend, King, Davis and Carter.


After the ‘86 return of the TT, it had become such a reader favorite that BMXA decided to make it an annual feature. The riders, too, were striving all year to be named in the Terrible Ten. Racers who hadn’t made it in the previous year now added that to their list of goals for the year. Some wrote the now familiar “Prove it” message on the back of their numbers plates as motivation.
Also for ‘87 - for the first and only time, BMXA decided to add a Freestyle Terrible Ten. 

Here are the first (and last) of the dual discipline Terrible Ten:


  • Terry Tennette: As GT’s fastest am, Mr.T was known for his power-wheelies out of turns, is super long wheelbase, and his thumbs’up pose in every photo. Aftre losing his GT ride not longer after this article, he’d ride for Vans and MCS and had a impressive pro career - despite always feeling like an underdog. Mr.T was inducted into the BMX Hall of Fame in 2016.

  • Eric Carter: The future BMX Hall of Famer and mountain biking World Champion had the cycling world in the palm of his hand. His future was so bright, he had to wear shades.

  • Mike King: The newly crowned No.1 Amateur, now riding for Haro Bikes, was living up to all expectations. He’d back up his No.1 Am title with a No.1 Pro plate the following year, ensuring him a place in the BMX Hall of Fame (inducted in 1999). King would also go on to head up the U.S. BMX Olympic program for nearly 8 years.

  • Cecil Johns: The late, great Cecil Johns brought the muscle and NorCal attiude to a peak in BMX racing. He ruled his age classes and proceeded to turn pro and make an even bigger name for himself in the AA ranks. Cecil was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2004.

  • Matt Hadan: A potential future Hall of Famer, Hadan had traded in his Diamondback for a Free Agent and was on his way to a No.1 Cruiser cup in the ABA. He’d eventually return to DB and live the next decade as a top salaried AA-pro.

  • Darwin Griffin: His name and Boss Racing products were synonymous. Darwin was always one of the top guys to beat - whether in the 19&over X ranks or A-pro.

  • Todd Corbitt: Known by all his friends as “T.C.”, the always-energized Floridian became the E-team poster boy - promoting a clean and fun lifestyle, and would go on to race AA-pro for Auburn and GT - eventually turning into GT’s in-house team manager after an ill-timed broken leg put an end to his racing career. The tuff-blocks in front of the scoring/announcers tower are called the “T.C. Bale” for a reason.

  • Jameson Hendler: The Michigan racer was still reigning in NBL and managed to make it into his second Terrible Ten - but slowly faded from the BMX record books once he turned pro.

  • Danny Millwee: Riding for SE at the time, the Orange Y local was on the rise - training with roommate Kevin Hull and quickly became the guy to beat in his age class.

  • Ron Walker: Doing it for the Budweiser-owned Eagle Snacks team (which was made up of plenty top Ams from the South), Walker was the standout Floridian at the time. In the NBL, he was practically unbeaten, yet could never do the same on the ABA circuit.  


  • Rick Moliterno: The founding father of the Standard Byke Company was riding for Haro in 1987 and on top of the world - thus; his No.1 ranking in the freestyle Terrible Ten. Rick was an awesome all-around rider, who was a factor for any win, in any category, at any AFA competition. More recently, Rick was indcuted into the BMX Hall of Fame.

  • Dino DeLuca: Mostly known for his big-air skills on ramps, DeLuca was the rising figure in the thriving Camarillo ramp scene, and with full support from Dyno, was following in the footsteps of his good friend - Redline pro Todd Anderson.  

  • Gary Pollack: Innovative is probably the first word that comes to mind when you think of Gary Pollack and his flatland skills on a freestyle bike. Doing it for CW Racing, Gary was a touring fool that summer and would go on to invent a potpourri of stunts that are still linked together in modern day flatland.

  • Mat Hoffman: The young Skyway Am was already destined for greatness. Need we say more? What is surprising is that he was ranked No.4 by the BMXA ediitors - probably for the first and only time in his life.   ..and we all know what greatness Hoffman went on to after this. 

  • Karl Rothe: Mongoose's jack of all tricks is probably more known for later becoming Editor of BMX Plus magazine.

  • Scotty Freeman: As Hoffman's Skyway teammate, Freeman was the youngest of the F/S Terrible Ten'ers, and was years ahead of his comp in flatland expertise - carefully honed while on Summer Tours.

  • Dave Voelker: Tey might not have even called him "Lord Voelker" at this time - but it was obvious that the San Diego area ramp rider would become famous for going BIG. he still does to this day, doing school and fair shows around the West Coast.
    Dave, also, is a recent BMX Hall of Fame inductee.

  • Joe Johnson: Big airs were they key to his reprotoire and smoothness and multiple variations were no problem for this East Coast ripper. Johnson is perhaps the most under-rated ramp rider of all time.

  • John “Dizz” Hicks: With his long blonde locks that might get him mistaken for the lead singer of Twisted Sister, his metal-spiked framepad and 80's hair-metal soundtrack for contests and shows, Dizz was always a crowd favorite and major innovator of flatland trick - as well as King of the Kickturn ramp.

  • Jason Parkes: Much of what you see in today's flatland routines can be partially traced back to the multiple-links and twirling tenacity of Schwinn's Parkes.


BMX Action had their work cut out for them in 1988, as there were a ton of super fast older Ams about to make their move up to the Pro ranks. Some would go on to illustrious Pro careers, while others would drop out and never be heard from again (until facebook came along). 

The Class of 1988 fastest Ams were:

  • Matt Hadan: Already with a National No.1 Cruiser title on his resume, Hadan was one of those destined for a pro career in BMX. He’s go on to race for Diamondback, Balance, Redline, Gary Fisher and Torker during his decade as a top-10 ranked AA-pro.

  • Glenn Pavlovsky: The one-time coverboy of BMX Action magazine was synonymous with the Elf bike brand, and while he did turn pro - he was never quite able to push it up to the Elite level.   

  • Eric Carter: Today, he is a BMX Hall of Fame inductee, but back in 1988, Carter was about to turn Pro and take the cycling world by storm. This was the third terrible Ten he'd been named in, having made TT-2 at an early age, and there had been plenty of National and World Championships, along with numerous national wins, since that time. ...and plenty more wins to come.

  • Steve Dillard: Dillard, riding for Skyway, was just coming on strong at this time - and showed all sign that he could be the next Steve Veltman. ...but, unfortunately, never did.

  • Danny Millwee: Known as "The Missle" - Millwee rode for SE and later on, became Auburn's token Amateur. At the time, he credited much of his speed to cranking up some Slayer in his Sony Walkman before every moto.

  • Travis McGhee: Riding for Homor and the crew at Coastal Bikes, McGhee was considered the "longshot" on this version of the Terrible Ten. he would likely have been that final, hard to chose 10th pick. Super strong in the NBL, yet unproven on the ABA national circuit.

  • Jeff Donnell: The older brother of Jason, Jeff strived to break out of his brother's shadow and success. At this time, the elder Donnell brother was consistenlty in the older Expert mains and teetering on being the name to be reckoned with.

  • Steve Veltman: What can be said about V-Dog that hasn't been said before? As a 12 year old, he'd already become the first rider in BMX history to win two No.1 Cups in the same year, and had been featured on a Wheaties box. In just a few years after this Terrible ten article, Veltman would set a new Win-record for the season and become a No.1 Pro title holder

  • Kenny May: if not out front, Mayday was usually found on teh ground. It was his win-at-all costs style that made this Roseville local such a legend .. that, and his multiple No.1 Amateur and Cruiser titles!

  • Darwin Griffin: It might be hard to say which Griffin Brother was faster - Darwin or Dana. Both were oh-so-fast - and while his older brother was a top A-pro, amateur Darwin and his Boss bike were following in the fast footsteps of new rookie pro Cecil Johns.

Interesting Terrible Ten Trivia: The “police lineup” magazine layout in BMX Action was inspired by the infamous graphic novel The Watchmen.

TERRIBLE TEN (Fifth Edition) - 1999

After a long, 9-year haitus - and with the disapearance of GO magazine (formerly BMX Action), newly crowned editor of BMXer magazine - Billy D., teamed up with ABA scrub Shannon Gillette to revive the long, lost Terrible Ten. This was Billy D's second issue since switching from ABA truck-driver to BMXer Editor, and we'd say he did a brilliant job bringing it back. 

The '99 TT went like this: 

  • Daniel Greer             Diamondback
  • Clint Lambert            ProConcept-Cutting Edge BMX
  • Mario Soto                Powerlite
  • Steven Larralde         GT-Panasonic Shockwave
  • Chad Hernaez            GT-Panasonic Shockwave
  • Dan Shanahan           GT-Panasonic Shockwave
  • J.P Fellin                    Diamondback
  • Brandon Meadows      Schwinn
  • Donny Robinson         Powerlite
  • "Beltbuckle" Barry Nilson     Haro-Adidas

With one Colombian Rookie Pro of the Year legend, an Olympic bronze medalist and X-Games BMX Downhill Champion, and an "older" dude with more consecutive No.1 Cruiser Cups than anyone else in the sport, there's no denying that Billy D. nailed this one.


In the 2003 batch of the World’s 10 Fastest Amateurs, we had a few eventual future AA-pros and even a No.1 Pro & Pro Cruiser title holder. When it comes to “making it” to the top of the Pro ranks, this one was about a 50/50 split on success and fading away. The class of 2003 TT was:


  • Mike Brabant: 

  • David Herman: 2012 BMX Olympian and 2-time No.1 Am. Need we say more?  

  • Chris Burke:

  • Michael Hughes: Eventually clawed his way to the AA-pro class. 

  • Taylor Wells: 

  • Danny Caluag: Eventually became the first Pro to ever win a No.1 Pro and Pro Cruiser title in the same year.

  • Jefferey Upshaw: His smoothness and speed got him up to the double-A pro ranks, but his sponsorship situation has floated him back and forth between A and AA.

  • Mike Moeller:

  • Mike Lundy: 

  • Jason Rogers: The DeSoto local is still doing it in double-A today - and is mentoring many fast Texans on a weekly basis to become a Terrible Ten'er someday.


It’s no easy task picking the ten fastest guys. Usually the top 5 or 6 are easily in there, but it’s those final 3 or 4 who are hard to chose from as the field levels out and you’ll usually have about a dozen or so riders who could all qualify for those final 9 & 10 spots in the Terrible Ten. This time, our editor Dan or Billy? had a hard time picking that final No.10 of the most terribleness. Thus, they cheated and went with the Terrible Ten +1. Like Spinal Tap’s amps, this list went up to 11:

  • Jeff Upshaw: 

  • Justin Dickmeyer:

  • Michael Lundy: 

  • David Herman: 

  • Mikey Moeller: 

  • Danny Caluag: 

  • Sergio Pena: 

  • Vance Wiesendanger: 

  • Mikey Brabant: 

  • Josh Oie: 

  • Joey Bradford: 


The “Terrible Ten strikes again!” was the headline - stating that these were the Best of the Best. Here’s who was “on fire” in the mid-00’s? These guys were:

  • Joe Szurek:

  • Kris Fox: Currently a top freestyle rider for Factory SE - putting out some sweet edits from the skateparks and trails of SoCal. He's always been one of those multi-talented hardcore riders.

  • Ben Kubalak: Being one of the two 15 year olds in this bunch, this Minnesota local yocal modestly claimed that it was his “looks” that got him in the TT.

  • Joey Bradford: Doin’ it for Mongoose at this stage of his career, BMXer mag had to run all of JB’s co-sponsors in 5-pt type, just to fit them all in. This is the Joey Bradford superstar-era that made young kids (including an Australian named Sam Willoughby) dream of being like Joey. Some even told their substitute teachers their name was Joey (right, Sam?).

  • Sergio Pena: The Surge is probably the last Terrible Ten member to wear a open face helmet ... before it was stolen and traveled aroudn the world.

  • Mikey Brabant: 

  • David Herman: 2012 BMX Olympian and 2-time No.1 Am. Need we say more?  

  • Jeff Upshaw: Last seen at the McCollum Park Pro/Am and the Louisville Derby City Nationals, in his Kuwahara colors - flyin' and stlyin' like ET the extra terrestrial.

  • Travis Ohrazda: Was recently spotted returning to the A-pro ranks in Reno, and still heck'a fast.

  • Joey Berthiaume: YES! The same “Bomb” that has been seen on a few AA-pro podiums this year was once a Terrible Ten’er. Riding for Redman at the time, the 17 year old Minnesota’n was just starting to make a name for himself.


With two Olympians and two more top-ranked AA-pros in this hand-picked Tensome, the class of 2006’s Top Amateurs (Ninth Edition) was as strong as all other previous ones. Let’s see if you recognize any of these names:

  • Jeff Upshaw: Ohio’s Upshizzle was the constant main maker at any age and was well known for his lethal combo of strength and skills. He would later work his way up to AA-pro.

  • Vance Wissendanger: Still racing in the A-pro class today - and this year, scored his first ever single-A pro victory in Albuquerque.

  • Joe Szurek: Always a threat.

  • Joe Sowers: Always a contender!

  • Jake Trevino: By this time, the ABA staff had watched Trevino grow up in BMX - having raced the national circuit since age 4 - and he claimed “pterdactyl power” as his secret to success.

  • David Herman: Ze’ Herminator told Pull magazine that it was his “nasty 2nd pedal” that qualified him for the 2006 TT. The 2012 U.S. Olympian still had two No.1 Am titles ahead of him before turning pro.

  • Joey Bradford: Doin’ it for GT at the time, Stumpy’s team mate was the rising star of 17x, and predicted by many to be the next hottest racer to come from NorCal.

  • Denzel Stein: One of only two 15 years olds on this list (along with Trevino), Denzel was showing all signs of future Pro’ism with his incredible power and pull. He'd go on to a very successful AA-pro career, riding for Factory Redline.

  • Nic Long: He’d already been racing for 10 years and little did anyone know what lay ahead for Long ...except for our PULL editor, Dan Mooney. He predicted the fame, fortune and tattoos all along. Nic has had an amazing BMX career that is still going today - and most famously, holeshotted the Olympic main in Rio 2016.

  • Travis Ohrazda: The Answer factory stuff simply wrote “Skittles” in his reasoning for being so fast. .

TERRIBLE TEN 10 - 2007

The 2007 TT, hand-picked by BMXer magazine editor Dan Mooney, were as follows:

  • Nic Long: When asked what makes him a Terrible Ten’er, Nic wrote “the grundle grabbin’ tire skid.”

  • Derek Sipkoi: The future owner of D-Koi bikes and Alius parts was riding for Redman back in oh-7, and told BMXer mag that “anything but 1st place ain’t an option.”  

  • Lee Lewis: In typical Flea fashion, Lee listed his whippy whippermans, kicktups and yikiyacks as qualifications for the TT. He would become one of the most well-liked figures in the A-pro ranks, make it to AA, and is currently the artistic builder of custom pump tracks.

  • Denzel Stein: As Redline’s fastest (and only) factory Am, Stein credited his game face and ponies for getting him in to the TT.

  • Scott Simmons: Big Tool-sponsored Simmons was the eldest of this edition of Terrible Ten, and is probably the only TT’er to run flat pedals since 1988.

  • Corben Sharrah: 15 year old Sharrah was destined for greatness - duking it out at every national with Fields and Nyhaug, honing his skills at his backyard track in Tucson. Sharrah, as you probably know, would go on to qualify for Team USA, would win multiple USA Cycling patriotic sleeves and eventually won the UCI World Championship in Rock Hill. 

  • Connor Fields: The U.S. Olympian was our country’s Gold medal favorite last year, and simply said “I pedal hard” when asked why he should be a Terrible Ten’er. At the time, no one would've ever guessed that his "pedaling hard" would eventually win him a Olympic Gold medal (in Rio 2016). 

  • Jacob Peebles: The Phantom-Intense-OnTrac 16x was known for his aggressive riding style, even back in 2007, and had some great hard-fought battles with Denzel Stein that are still talked about today (with over 6,000 views on YouTube).
    #Peebles916 is still competing in the AA-pro class to this day.

  • Josh Meyers: Sponsored by Spinner’s, the Floridian flash claimed it was his “dirty south pull” that made him a Terrible Ten candidate. As you know, Meyers went on to be one of the “Great 8” of last year’s Olympic Trials.

  • Deak Brown: In Deak’s comments, he listed both Bart Taylor and Cru Jones as his toughest comp.


This was the year that BMXer magazine thrived to make the Top-10 Am list even better - by chosing the Terrible Ten of Girls, in addition to the fastest males. They called it the “Twisted Twenty” - and the 11th Edition of TT were named:


  • Nic Long: It was predicted long, long ago that Nic would be where he is today - as a Pro title contender, AA-pro winner and U.S. Olympian.

  • Thomas Vallejo: 

  • Lee “Nic Long II” Lewis: If you looked at the article, Nic was captioned twice - but the photo sure looked a lot like the increible mighty munchkin known and loved by all as "The Flea."  Currently -whereabouts unknown, but we hear there's a good swell in Barbados.

  • Jacob Peebles: The new pride of NorCal.

  • Jared Garcia: As a new Rookie Pro this year, “The Jet” has long been known for his skills on a BMX bike. Today, is a top Elite Pro.

  • Kory Cook: Is currently in the AA-pro ranks, making a name for himself and occasionally breaking on to the podium.

  • Connor Fields: The U.S. Olympian was our country’s Gold medal favorite in London 2012. World Champion time trialer, World Cup winner .. there's not much more that we can say about Fields. 2016 Gold perhaps?!  (* Check that predcition off the list.)

  • Riley Stair: 2013 has been a great year for the leader of the tangent cartel. 

  • Josh Meyers: Was the 8th man on last year's Olympic Trials "Great 8" - and has always been a factor for one of the eight spots in a AA-pro main.

  • Billy Russell: 


  • Shelbi Long: 

  • Balinda Wassenaar: 

  • Morgan Barajas: 

  • Ashley Verhagen: 

  • Brooke Crain: At 15, lil’ Brookie was the youngest of this bunch, but it was clear at the time of her future Pro and Olympic potential. Ironically, 8 years later, she’d be representing Team USA in London.

  • Kristin Hoki: 

  • Taylor Wolcott: Racing for Intense-Phantom-OnTrac at the time, Taylor went on to turn pro and is still a factor in the Womens Pro ranks whenever she shows up.

  • Samantha Bretheim: At the time of her TT’ness, Samantha was Crupi’s fastest cat, and …

  • Megan Mathews: 

  • Tyler Schaefer: The multi-time No.1 Girl just turned Pro this year, and when not studying at school, she’ll be a top contender in any Womens Pro final.


Amazingly - it’s been five years since the last Terrible Ten. After consulting much of the USA BMX national staff, it was new editor "Shooter" McGuire's call to name the final ten. The article appears in the August/September issue of PULL magazine - and definitely is chock-full of potential No.1 Pros and future 2020 Tokyo Olympians ...heck; maybe even a 2016 Olympian or two.


  • Sean Gaian
    Shooter said: “Recently coming home from the 2013 World Championships with the No. 1 Junior Men’s title, it should be of no surprise that Sean Gaian has made the 2013 PULL Magazine Terrible Ten list. Gaian has been one of the most respected racers of current day and minus a couple of injuries in 2013, he has been a big player in the amateur ranks. The Factory GT rider from San Diego, CA will be is on my list for potential National No. 1 Amateurs next year and it should not be long until we see Sean Gaian in the ranks of the Elite Men.”
  • Rusty Nesvig
    Shooter said: “The current National No. 1 title holder, Rusty Nesvig has been dominating the race scene since he was 13 years old. It seems as if Nesvig hides in the shadows waiting to pounce on his prey like a hungry cougar. He wins when everything is on the line and never seems to be bothered by the pressure of everyone around him. This tattooed San Diego native is just one of many champions to come out of Kearny Moto Park and it we can definitely count on seeing his sound barrier crushing speed contend for another title and venture into the Pro ranks next year.” 

  • Tyler Whitfield 
    Shooter said: “If you looked up the definition of style, Tyler Whitfield would somehow be associated with it. Style is this kids middle name and besides being fairly famous for his long distance manualing skills and YouTube videos, Whitfield is one of the most dangerous guys you will ever have to line up in the gate with. 2013 has really been a breakout year for this shredder from Illinois and he only continues to progress as the year goes on. He has the skills to come back and take the lead after being behind and never looks bad when at the track. Make sure you watch closely or you might miss him if you blink as he jets to more top podium positions through the year.”

  • Robby Patterson
    Shooter said: “In recent years Robby Paterson has been noted as one of the fastest amateurs in BMX. In 2013 he has been a dominating force in the 19-27X class with a chunk of national victories which has placed him in second place for the 2013 Amateur National Champion title hunt. Patterson is one of the hardest working individuals I have met during my time in the sport and he should be on everyone’s radar heading into Grands. A few words of wisdom for all of his competition out there; Patterson ahs the turn skills of a highly trained fifth generation ninja, you do not want him behind you.”

  • Ryan Zinzow
    Shooter said: “ “2013 has treated Ryan Zinzow well as he finds himself right in the title hunt. This kid is just plain fast. No fancy gimmicks or anything unnecessary, Zinzow just has the speed to go out, put a fire trail on his back will and lead the pack around the track. It seems as if he is winning every race he enters in 2013 while working his way towards a shot at the title. Watch for him to battle it out with Collin Hudson in Tulsa if he can keep it on two wheels.”

  • Felicia Stancil
    Shooter said: “Many of you have already figured out that Factory GT’s Felicia Stancil is the only female racer to make the Terrible Ten for 2013. After the countless hours of arguments about who should be on the list, it was no question that Stancil deserved one of the ten spots. She has been one of the most dominating amateur female competitors since Alise Post and Dominique Daniels. A contagious smile and legs that would put most men’s to shame, Stancil is on many of our 2016 Olympic hopeful lists, not to mention she just won the Jr. Women’s World title. Stancil is one of the most humble riders out there and has never once taken her success for granted. After he gnarly fall on the Supercross tour earlier this year, it was unknown how long it would take her to recover. Now she has recovered and came back right where she left off, WINNING.”  

  • Collin Hudson
    Shooter said: “King of Gooner Town, Collin Hudson may be one of the best bar hump artists on the circuit. Hudson has a knack for winning World Championships along with NAG 1 titles. This Colorado ladies man is as ice cold as the Rocky Mountains when he is on the track making flawless laps. Hudson will still be in the amateur ranks for a few more years and it would be no surprise if somewhere along that time, he walks away with a National No. 1 title.”
  • Lain VanOgle
    Shooter said: “For years, Lain Van Ogle and his sister Kelsey have been winning titles and this year it is no different as Van Ogle finds himself heading into Grands sitting in first place for the No. 1 Amateur title. Van Ogle currently has over 1700 points, which has not been done since 2002 when Trae Proctor took the title. Will he be able to handle the pressure and take the title? Or will the competition take him down like a pack of lions? Only time will tell, but we will know on December 1st.” 
  • Jeremy Smith
    Shooter said:  “This Ohio bred and born hotshot has been one of the East Coast’s finest and with his win at the 2012 Nag 5 challenge, Jeremy Smith was on permanent watch for 2013. Since then, Smith started off the year in winning fashion but was injured in early March. Upon his return, Smith went on to more victories that have helped give him a current top 5 Nag ranking for the year. Smith is as quiet as a snake but he has cheetah like quickness that will hurt you if you do not respect it. Watch for him to be in the NAG 1 hunt when Grands rolls in.” 

  • Maliek Byndloss

    G-mo said: “This soft spoken Floridian has been carrying himself with a level of professionalism since before he became a household name. Maliek is a favorite to win any race he enters anywhere in the world. He has won multiple World Championship and national titles and is the current USA Cycling National Champion in the Junior Men division. His style can best be described as a perfect blend of high wattage power and race inspired swagger.   With the tremendous support system he has behind him, there’s no limit to what he’ll accomplish in the years to come.”

(printed in the April 2019 issue of PULL) 

Traditionally, Terrible Ten’ers have gone on to Pro super-stardom and many of the originals are now in the BMX Hall of Fame. It’s been six years since the last Terrible Ten was published in PULL magazine, and we congratulate those who made the cut. Narrowing the list to the Top-10 is always a hard task.
For this 13th edition of the Terrible Ten, PULL Magazine decided to break it down into three groups - Girls, Boys and for the first time ever - the mighty midgets of BMX; the Terrible 10 & Unders.
As with all past TT lists, we know that not everybody will agree with our final choices - so feel free to debate about it on social media. For our criteria, we first imagine a 50-person wide starting gate - and attempt to guess who the first ten riders would be to the first turn. After that has been debated, we then look at NAG rankings, wins and National and World Championship titles. Then, finally, we throw ten darts at the list and see where they land - predicting that these Top-10 will someday go on to become some of the Greatest Pro racers in our Sport.

Note: As it was written back in 1986, “For those who think they belong on this list and didn’t make it - PROVE IT.”

Expert Boys (15+) 
  • Cam Wood - 17X - Avondale, Arizona
  • Dustin Hammond - 20X - Columbia, Kentucky
  • Dylan Wood - 15X - Houston, Texas
  • Gavin Freewalt - 16X - Schaumburg, Illinois
  • Jack Kelly - 16X - Kearns, Utah
  • Jesse Welch - 18X - Perris, California
  • Kye Affoo - 18X - Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
  • Patrick Coo - 16X - Bellflower, California
  • Riley House - 18X - Gilbert, Arizona
  • Spencer Cole - 17X - Palm Harbor, Florida


Expert Girls (15+) 
  • Ashley Hayes - 17XG - Colorado Springs, Colorado
  • Emily Hayes - 17XG - Colorado Springs, Colorado
  • Daleny Vaughn - 17XG - Tucson, Arizona
  • Lexis Colby - 16XG - Wittmann, Arizona
  • Mackenzie Gayheart - 16XG - Ft. White, Florida
  • Maddie DeSantis - 15XG - Simi Valley, California
  • Natalee Daughtry - 16XG - Plano, Texas
  • Olivia Armstrong - 18XG - Bend Oregon
  • Payton Ridenour - 16XG - Pottstown, Pennsylvania
  • Tiegen Pascual - 15XG - Garibaldi Highlands, British Columbia, Canada


Terrible Ten & Unders
  • Alexander Booth - 9X - Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • Daniel Waters - 10X - Victorville, California
  • Eli Staton - 8X - Belton, Missouri
  • Ellie Carey - 7XG - Goodyear, Arizona
  • Gaige Gomolicke - 10X - Ukiah, California
  • Hayden Passanisi - 9X - Alpine, California
  • Joseph Mather - 8X - Omaha, Nebraska
  • Justin Perkins - 10X - Glendale, Arizona
  • Rowdy Holzer - 9X - Newcastle, California
  • Tommy Bruney - 10X - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

(ages listed are as of 3-22-19.  Riders listed alphabetically by first-name / there is no ranking.)




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