Tyler Lowthian, Russ Lowthian, HaveFunBiking.com
It may be in the future, 20 years from now, but on July 12th as the Tour de France pro racers moved through the Col de la Croix des Moinats range in France, cycling’s future challengers competed for the first time ever in St. Cloud, Minn. With rain threatening to ace out the day’s activities toddlers raced on balance bikes while families ventured to this Central Minnesota community nestled next to the Mississippi River to watch the Strider Champion Series. With many fun activities scheduled, as the race coincided with Downtown St. Cloud’s annual “Walk About” program, toddler’s from ages two up to five showed their potential as future cyclists.
The race event, sponsored by Strider Bikes, Scheels Sporting Goods, Destination Granite Country and Pineview Park BMX, was held in the beautiful Lake George Park on the south edge of the downtown area, in St. Clould.
As this was my first time covering a toddler event, it was fun to watch the two-year old’s having fun, while some of the racers overly aggressive parents, on the sidelines, didn’t know how to relax.
Here some of the three year-olds racing in the starting gate ready to show the spectators in St. Cloud their newly gain balancing talents.
Down the straight away with dad sharing a few inspiring words, as he runs behind.
With his helmet cam rolling, I think this guy enjoys being in the picture more than he likes filming what was in front of him.
Number 331 is having a good time giving the guys on the course a run for their podium spot.
Cool helmet for making the bend near the water fountain in Lake George Park.
No training wheels needed here!
Whoops, a slight mishap when one of those tires laying in the course wouldn’t move out of the way. No one hurt and everyone was back in the race within 30 seconds.
It’s easy to get distracted with all this commotion….
The top six racers in the three-year old division enjoying the moment.
Some of St. Cloud’s finest posing with one of the Strider champions.
Here at the starting gate the four year-old riders are set to hit the course.
With skill and determination number 413 is only a couple Strider bike lengths ahead of her competition.
With concentration and perseverance number 415’s striding talents are keeping him out front.
Only a lap to go number 414 is giving a little extra effort to close the gap on 415.
Keep on Stridin’!
Here some of the five year olds have taken to the course, showing their talents.
After this race it looks like number 510 will be ready for some pedals.
Another one of those intimidating helmets!
Ah yes, one of life’s lessons – defeat. Good thing dad was there to offer some comfort and reassurance that tomorrow would bring another day to get on the bike and try again.