8-year-old national BMX champion’s family are doing all they can to support the young rider – and the famous mum too | Vizcaya key

Pushing to the limit is what Stephanie Coymat does best, conquering her fears, doubts and competition when it comes to world-class BMX racing, or wakesurfing, kitesurfing, snowboarding, surfing – and, now, of motocross racing.

But there’s one fear she hasn’t overcome: laundry day.

“Oh my God!” she said after walking through a few washing machines. “How dirty can we get? Sometimes I have to throw it away, it gets so bad.

However, she usually finds the right combination of Tide and fabric softener to soften most of the mud, dirt, and red clay.

She’s also found the right combination of motivation and inspiration to guide her son, 8-year-old Bruno Insignares, who recently won the Grand National Cross Country motocross race in Palatka, northeast Florida.

It was the biggest race he had ever taken part in – a 25-minute “stumble” in which all the competitors (up to 50-80) race at speeds of 40-50 mph over obstacles and difficult terrain. Not to be outdone, Mom finished fourth in the adult category, the first time they competed at the same venue.

“He was so excited, so happy,” said Key Biscayne resident Stephanie. “But Bruno is Bruno. He just likes to play with friends outside, he’s always on his iPad, he loves to ride his bike, he wakes up surfs…”

And, like mum, he’s become a celebrity with more than 3,700 followers on his “Bruno The Red Head” Instagram page.

“He’s quite a character,” she said. “He loves competition.”

Celebrity status is nothing new for Stephanie, who was once ranked third in the world in the sport of BMX cross-country bike racing, dominating her homeland for 10 years before retiring at the age of 20 years.

Raised in Barranquilla, Colombia, which spawned other notable celebrities such as Shakira, Sofia Vergara and Marlins World Series star Edgar Renteria, Stephanie said she became “probably most famous” for her appearances on two shows Colombian “Survivor” type television shows called “Desafio 2009” (The Challenge) and later “The Farm”, in which she finished second in her mid to late twenties.

Photo shoots, magazine interviews and TV appearances suddenly came to her.

“I did a lot of publicity; whatever they said to me, I said yes,” she said. “But I know it won’t last. For six months, however… then the other reality lasts. Here they don’t know who I am,” she added with a laugh.

Bruno has not only become a celebrity himself among his private school peers, but he is also well known in Barranquilla.

“We’re going to Colombia later this summer – he’s famous there,” Stephanie said, of Bruno’s image crafted on a series of boys’ swimwear. “Kids are crazy about it and what it does.

“He thinks he’s super famous,” she joked, “but not that way. He’s always trying to help people, and he’ll be doing a (motocross) demonstration there for the kids. can see her.

Bruno has been running for three years. Mom finished second in the state in the Women’s Trail Riders Series last year.

Stephanie, who earned the nickname “Titi” during her BMX competition days, said the transition from bikes to motorbikes was pretty easy.

“The other one you pedal, this one you speed up,” she said. “I have the basics. All my life I’ve been around motorcycles and bicycles, so my kids do. I cultivate that in them.

She raced bikes at an early age because her mother thought she was too young to ride motorcycles. Then, one day, as an adult, she spoiled herself and has since fallen in love with the sport, motivating Bruno in the process.

“He thinks it’s super cool to have a running mom,” Stephanie said. “He always asks me about anything (sports) related and he sees me as a role model, and that’s good for him and his sisters.”

Racing becomes a family affair

Eddie Insignares has lived in South Florida since 1985, first in Kendall, then Miramar, before moving to Key Biscayne in 2011, retaining his position as President of Intertech Trading Corp., a global computer wholesaler-distributor in Doral since 1998.

He enjoys making motocross a sport the whole family can enjoy (his daughter Carlota is a novice rider, while Ivanna is a fan so far), and he’s happy to see Bruno show such progress, finishing fourth. in the State Series last year at the age of 7.


“We’re very proud of him,” Eddie said.

He and his wife invested about $300,000 in a fully furnished 37-foot, two-bedroom motorhome with a trailer to haul five motorcycles to remote competition courses in areas such as Sebring, Bartow and Palatka, where the nearby hotels are often not available.

Bruno’s sleek-looking KTM 50-70cc mini dirt bike, No. 76 orange and blue, costs around $7,000 with its electric start.

“It’s like a Tesla,” Stephanie said. “There’s no gas spillage, you don’t have to change the oil all the time…there are so many little parts (to fix) on these (other) bikes.”

It is now a simple recharge, which takes about 40 minutes.

Like any extreme sport, bumps and bruises come with the territory.

“Honestly, it’s not that dangerous,” Eddie said. “All sports have their risks, but the pitches are well marked and there are several people working at various points on the mile-and-a-half circuit with radios to warn if a child falls.

“In addition, they wear very good protective equipment, elbow pads, helmet, boots, gloves and a chest protector. And these children are small, so it’s not that far to fall.

Living in Key Biscayne, there are no places to train, although ATV training in Virginia Key is a secondary option.

“You don’t have a lot of space to practice anywhere in Miami,” Stephanie said.

So forgive the pun, but they took it to another extreme.

They decided to buy a farm in Moore Haven, a two-hour drive and just southwest of Lake Okeechobee, a 25-acre area populated by chickens, pigs, dogs and ponies. The site is where they are also building a house.

“We have to do this so we can train,” Stephanie said, noting that the animals have become accustomed to the hum of racing engines. “Kids on Key Biscayne love the water, but it’s so peaceful here and they love the farm animals.”

Stephanie laughs at the thought of owning an RV while living in a tropical oasis like Key Biscayne.

“I live in a fancy place, but I’m not that fancy,” she joked.

Now, if she can keep those uniforms clean.

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