The fast-paced, adrenaline-charged Arenacross Tour starts its 2019 series this weekend when the doors open at the SSE Arena, Belfast at 6pm on Friday the 18th of January.
The many exciting facets and heart-racing details of the Arenacross show with its incredible motocross racing and seemingly impossible ballistic Freestyle MX feats have already been well documented. However, before the whole razzmatazz kicks off, a great initiative took place at W5 and the SSE, Arena on Wednesday 16 January, during Arenacross build-up, that gives something back to the community.
Arenacross for Schools saw just shy of 200 Primary 6 pupils attend an interactive field-day at The SSE Arena and adjoining W5 Science and Discovery Centre. The programme is a joint venture between Arenacross, W5, the STEM Ambassadors involved in the construction project from ARUP, Graham Farrans JV and the Institution of Civil Engineers.
The purpose of the day was to take children safely through the stages of the creation of a world-class event such as Arenacross, whilst at the same time, inject a hole heap of excitement into what was an worthwhile and valuable field trip. On the day in question, thousands of tons of dirt were delivered into the venue, in readiness for the construction and production crew to work their magic in turning a pristine concert and ballroom dancing amphitheatre into a full-on dirt-filled race track.
Every Arenacross track is meticulously planned and shaped, to optimise the space and orientation of each arena floor. The aim is to deliver the most technically-challenging race circuit imaginable in the shortest amount of time, and the smallest amount of space. As such, it provides a fun platform from which to highlight to young people just how STEM - Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths – can be applied.
This event introduced children to construction, engineering and technology and showcased the breadth of different careers and pathways to employability available through an innovative and engaging day of activities. Four primary schools - Duneane PS and St Oliver Plunkett PS from Toomebridge, Moneynick PS, Randalstown and Edwards PS from Castlederg participated.
Julia Carson STEM Ambassador Hub Manager at W5 said; “We were delighted to be able to support this unique opportunity for young people to see real life STEM in action. Throughout the day they heard from experts in engineering and construction, took part in hands-on activities and then saw how all these technical skills come together to create a jaw-dropping, live action event with Arenacross.”
The fact that Jonathan Rea, the 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 World Superbike Champion, the winningest racer in Superbike history, lent his considerable support to Arenacross for Schools was the icing on the cake for these youngsters. He spoke to the assembled schoolchildren, and shared insights into his aspirational journey, he was also joined by other Northern Irish big-hitters such as British and World motocross contenders Graeme Irwin and Martin Barr, former British and Irish champ Gordon Crockard, reigning MX2 Irish champ Glenn Irwin, MX of Nations Team boss Philip McCullough together with his racing twins Cole and Robbie from the aforementioned Edwards primary school in Castlederg as well as a bevy of local racing talent.
The children got to meet the racers and enjoy their own private Arenacross Freestyle MX show, prior to heading home or enjoying the W5 facilities.
In line with its incredible family entertainment and race action show, Arenacross takes school field-trips to another level.
Arenacross Tour tickets are on sale now, with prices from just £12 for a child visitor on Friday evenings, and substantial discounts available for two-night tickets. Arena doors will open at 6pm, with the opening ceremony getting underway at 7.30pm.
Arenacross Tour dates;
Click here for 2019 Tour information and to buy tickets.