|Youth mountain bikers gear up for statewide competition|
|Written by Staci Gasser|
|Saturday, 15 December 2012 00:00|
Big things are happening for youth cyclists in Sedona and Arizona.
The state of Arizona was recently granted a league in the National Interscholastic Cycling Association, meaning Arizona high school students will have the opportunity to compete in mountain biking as a varsity sport in a four-race statewide series.
Arizona is now one of nine states that is part of NICA, the youth development organization governing high school mountain biking in the United States that started in 2009. Other states include California, Colorado, Tennessee and New York.
“It’s along the lines of varsity sports if a school wants to put a team together,” said Zach Stanford, an avid Sedona mountain biker who runs the Mountain Biking Club at West Sedona School. “It’s also a sport kids can do on their own, they don’t need a school to participate. But there are schools in Colorado who have full-on teams, and that’s what NICA hopes schools will go towards.”
The league can best be compared to high school swimming or wrestling. The cyclists will compete in individual categories but can be scored as a team if there are enough participants from one school.
As of right now there is no team yet for Sedona Red Rock High School, but some Sedona mountain bikers, like Stanford, are laying the foundations.
For the full story, please see the Friday, Dec. 14, issue of the Sedona Red Rock News.