Incline mountain bike team off to hot start
The Incline mountain bike team, now in its sixth year, prepared for the spring NorCal high school cycling season by participating in a three-day preseason training camp in Granite Bay over the Martin Luther King Jr. weekend.
The camp included the MTB Kickstart local mountain bike race. After the fog lifted, Incline junior and 2015 California JV state champion Meghan Kelley — aka The California Crusher — took the top podium spot and the title of fastest overall female. Kelley finished the 18-mile course with a time of 1:31:39.
Incline’s Nelson Bedient finished 16th in a field of 34 racers in the male high school expert division. Hannah Laurie, new to the team and to mountain biking, proved she’s tough enough to handle the dirt, finishing the 6-mile novice course tired but smiling.
Not to be overshadowed, the junior riders also fared well. Eighth-grader Kate Kelley placed third in the high school sport category and her brother James Kelley, the youngest of the bunch at 10 years of age, finished 18th out of 34 in the 14-and-younger age division.
With a month to go before the first official NorCal race, the Incline team is looking forward to a great season of riding, camping and fun on the trails of Northern California. Racing begins Feb. 28 at Fort Ord on the Monterey Peninsula. Meghan Kelley and Nelson Bedient both qualified to race varsity this season, a distinction given to the top riders of the 800-plus NorCal race league.
While mountain bike racing is not an officially recognized Nevada high school sport and receives no financial support, the Incline school staff and the community help in supporting the team’s efforts.
For more information on joining or supporting the team, contact head coach Doug Bedient at firstname.lastname@example.org. Interested teens are asked to commit to three days of training a week. Midweek training is left up to the individual, with the group getting together on the weekends for team rides, clinics and drills.
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