ALBION Park-based South Lake BMX Club rider Kai Sakakibara's dream of winning the national championships was dashed by a mechanical error, but a great result in the national series helped ease the blow.
Kai, 17, came second in the junior elite men's division at the BMX National Series in Shepparton, Victoria on May 1.
That was the final round and gave Helensburgh resident Kai a second placing overall for the 2014 series.
It was his first podium finish and certainly made up for a disappointing sixth-placed finish in the BMX National Championships semi-final for his division on May 3, at the same venue.
Kai was the top qualifier for the semis, competing against 30 riders.
"I had a really good start and I was leading down the first straight but I had a mechanical error with my clip pedal," he said.
"My foot came out of the pedal and that put me right back into last.
"I was able to catch up into sixth but only the top four make it through."
Kai said it was his goal to win the national championships this year.
"I was pretty gutted after not making it through to the finals . . . but I was definitely really happy with my results from the national series, and that's not a one-off like the national champs."
Kai was impressed with the technical track at Shepparton and the great community support.
Kai's younger sister, 14-year-old Saya, who also rides for South Lake also notched up great performances at Shepparton, winning the national series for 15 girls' and placing second in the national championships.
Saya is the world champion for 14 girls' and will defend her title in Rotterdam, the Netherlands in July.
Kai, who has been competing in BMX since he was four, flew out on Tuesday to the Netherlands for the second stop of the World Cup Super Cross Series.
If selected for Australia, Kai will also be competing at the world championships.