Miner mountain bikers geared up for state climb
Special to The Union
They listened nervously to the coaches’ instructions concerning this, their first race of the year.
The conditions were overcast, but clearing, matching the expressions on the riders’ faces as they began to realize that their nervousness was normal, and would transform into the needed energy for the mass start of their respective races.
For many on the Nevada Union Mountain Bike Team, this was their first race, one they, and their parents, would remember with special fondness above all the races yet to come.
The Nevada Union Mountain Bike Team competed at Fort Ord near Monterey last weekend for the first of a five-race series in the NorCal league. More than 500 riders from 35 schools met in typical coastal conditions, misty and cloudy with a few sprinkles of rain.
The Nevada Union team, comprised mostly of freshmen and sophomores competing for their first time, nevertheless held its own against the more experienced Bay Area teams.
For the varsity women, veteran senior Christine Weir placed third in a field of 24, completing 18 miles in 1:22, a scant 6 seconds behind the second-place finisher from Folsom. Competing in her first race was junior Christa Baker, placing 11th in a JV field of 32 (12 miles in 1:12). Sophomore girl Lindsey Hayes broke into the top ten with a time of 1:27:44, followed closely by Julia Toro in 12th place at 1:35.
Contending for their first time in a very competitive varsity field over a 24-mile course were Mason Bond and Jeremiah Newman, covering the challenging 24-mile terrain in 1:40 and 1:48, respectively.
For the JV boys, with a field of 69 riders, Steve Baldock also placed in the top ten with a time of 1:18 with David Lowe following closely behind at 1:22, Evan Thibodeau at 1:35 and Julian Smallwood at 1:53.
The sophomore boys were paced by Jack Mann (56 minutes), 10th in a field of 77, followed closely by teammates Dillan Virva (12th, 4 seconds behind Mann), and Tim Warmerdam, 17th at 57 minutes. Also competing were Caden Maves (1:04), Aidan Arata (1:05), Calvin Peterson (1:05), Pat Denboske (1:13), and Sean Walik (1:13).
For the freshmen boys, Zach Moultrie placed 8th out of 65 ,covering the 12 miles in one hour, pursued by teammates Tyler Grebe ( 14th with a time of 1:02) and Sam Vieaux (15th at 1:03).
Also racing in their first races were Zach Williams ( 1:04), Chad Grenon (1:07), Blake Logan (1:10), Connor Oliver (1:11), Garrett Newman (1:21), Dakota Agran (1:25), Brad Hoffler (1:32) and Brennan Staley.
Nevada Union’s next race is at Folsom Lake on March 21.
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