El Paso

Desert Downs BMX gets robbed for 5th time

Desert Downs BMX gets robbed for 5th...

The Desert Downs BMX race track has provided a place for kids to race since 1977.

In recent years, the track has experienced vandalism and break-ins. On Sunday, the track was robbed again.

The organization that runs the track is a not-for-profit. All of the people who race on the track volunteer to help maintain it. That's why they say it's not only heartbreaking but also a setback for them and the many young riders who use the track.

Raven Mallory, 12, has been racing BMX for about two years. She said there are three things she loves about it.

"The riding, the friendship, and the way they welcome you," Mallory said.

She tells ABC-7 she loves the challenge of a race.

"When you're on the track with the people you're racing and then you hear your name it makes you feel special," Mallory said.

On Sunday night, Mallory's race bike was stolen. (Pictured below: bikes that were stolen.)

"It's really sad," said Kane Darby, Mallory's mother. Her bike was also stolen from the track.

Darby told ABC-7 that racers put in countless hours not only racing, but maintaining the track as well.

"It's not fun and games when you're taking things from good kids, kids that try hard," Darby said.

Keli Watts overlooks the race track.

"At this point, the break-ins are getting old. They are very frustrating," she said.

Watts told ABC-7 that the thieves have stolen concession stand goodies and BMX bikes.

After the last few burglaries, management installed wrought iron bars to protect the concession stand but the bandits still managed to break in through a small window.

"It's a huge setback," Watts said.

The race bikes can range anywhere from $500 to $1,500.

For Mallory, her mom and others, it means less practice to get to that state level.

"My goal is to be number one," Mallory said.

Darby has a message for those who nabbed the bikes.

"What you're doing is not right and it's not going to get you anywhere in life. If you want to be somewhere in life just come join us -- you don't have to steal from us," Darby said.
    
Track operators told ABC-7 they've also bought security cameras but they need the help to get them installed and set up.


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