The MN High School Cycling League returns to Austin, MN this Saturday and Sunday (August 24-25) for an action-packed weekend of mountain bike racing. This will kick off the 2019 racing season for almost 2,000 middle school and high school students throughout Minnesota and Western Wisconsin.
Freshman Boys D1 | Wyatt Peterson, Burnsville | Mt. Kato 2018 | Photo Credit: tmbimages.com
Cycling League season highlights
Get ready Minnesota – a new race venue will be added for the Sept. 14-15 race. Each year, the MN League moves their race weekends to different venues across the state. This brings the sport to different locations around the region and to offer new and exciting race opportunities for the students. This year, the League is thrilled to be a part of the Chequamegon Festival the weekend of Sept. 14 and Sept. 15. Working with a variety of partners, including the Chequamegon Festival, a new trail has been built near Stone Lake, WI (Summit Lake Game Farm) that will become an exciting race venue for years to come – and a new mountain bike trail for people to ride and enjoy year-round. A special thanks to Tom Gujer and Chad McDonald for their help to make this trail happen!
Growing Interest and demand for younger mountain bike racers
They are all ready for a challenge. Photo Credit: tmbimages.com
As the interest in mountain bike racing has grown across the region there is also an increasing number of younger students interested in riding and racing with the MN League. To accommodate this demand, each MN League team has been given the option of adding in 6th-graders to their middle-school teams. They are thrilled to announce that there are over 160 sixth graders already signed up!
Schedule moves to two-day race weekends to accommodate growth
Due to a 30% growth in teams and racers, the MN League has adjusted their races from one day to a two-day racing schedule weekend for each scheduled race. Middle school racers will compete on Saturdays and high school racers will compete on Sundays.
“Last year, due to required race day schedule changes, we had to remove Sunday pre-ride time – this year, we were determined to find a way to bring back the ability for student-athletes to pre-ride and race on the same day,” said Josh Kleve, MN League Director, and Co-Founder. “By shifting the middle school to Saturday, this enabled us to add 6th grade, a long-requested addition, and spread the races out providing a more enjoyable experience for all of our middle school and high school student-athletes.”
Race Weekend Timeline at Austin, MN – Race #1
Photo Credit: tmbimages.com
For race #1 a full weekend is lined up at Schindler’s Way Trail near Todd Park, in Austin, MN. This Saturday, August 24th the middle school racers (6th, 7th, and 8th grade) will kick off the weekend schedule at 1 pm, with the last race of the day starting at 3:40 pm. Racing will resume on Sunday. August. 25th, with high-school racers starting at 9:30 am and wrapping up with the last race of the day starting at 3 pm.
With over 70 teams registered, the MN League has implemented a bye-week schedule to balance the riders across the venues. See the teams competing in Austin, MN.
For a full weekend #1 schedule of race start times, review the Austin Race Flyer.
The MN League is the sanctioned NICA organization of mountain bike racing for middle school and high school-aged student-athletes, since 2012. View the full schedule of racing for the 2019 season.
About the Minnesota High School Cycling League
The Minnesota High School Cycling League is a state-wide independent activity provider for student-athletes in 6th to 12th grade. Their mission is to build strong minds, bodies, character, and communities through cycling, regardless of ability level. Each MN League season includes summer programs, a seven-race series, wilderness first aid certification courses and a Spring Leaders’ Summit for training and certification of coaches. The MN League exists by virtue of a range of fundraising activities, as well as generous donors, and MN League sponsors. For more information on the MN League, visit minnesotamtb.org.