NICA-News-2020- 5
 

President's Note

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Andre Kashkin, founder of ChuTru racing in the Texas League earlier this season.

Dear Team NICA --

Happy National Bike Month! While National Bike Month does look a little different this year - we are still able to celebrate and embrace the way bikes build and shape our communities across the country. From student-athletes, to coaches, to parents and league and national staff, we all have an important role to play in keeping the cycling community strong and vibrant now and in the future. This month we launched a new campaign - encouraging everyone to be a “Roll Model” with NICA. Whether we realize it or not, as part of NICA and the mountain biking community we all serve as “Roll Models” in different ways and help our student-athletes also serve as roll models now and in the future.

Later on, you’ll be introduced to our 2019 NICA Award recipients - these individuals certainly qualify as roll models and represent members of our nationwide community who are making outstanding contributions to the development of interscholastic cycling and the national middle and high school mountain biking movement. I would like to offer a sincere congratulations and thank you to these individuals who embody our values and go above and beyond furthering the mission and vision of NICA.

Looking toward the future of our community, I have been thrilled to hear that local bike shops across the country are experiencing record sales and customer service requests. Local bike shops play an important role in the NICA community as they support local teams and assist with sponsor activation at the community level. Many of our student-athletes turn to their local shops to learn more about bike maintenance or work a first job. Strong local biking communities will enable our community to be strong and continue to grow well into the future.

Lastly, I want to introduce Andre Kashkin, a graduating senior who has been racing in the Texas league and is heading off to college a year early, self supported. Andre, like many of our athletes, has an entrepreneurial mind and is always looking for ways to improve his and his fellow NICA athletes' cycling experience. Andre has created a new product which makes racing and riding a more enjoyable experience for every rider out there. According to Andre he started ChuTru primarily to solve a longstanding problem, and secondly to help fund education. Check out his website to find out more. https://chutru.com/

Best Regards,
Steve

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What's New Across America

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John Burke speaks at the 2018 NICA National Conference in Bentonville, Arkansas. Photo: Todd Bauer

Save the Date! Impacting the Future - NICA National Conversation - June 25th

Thursday, June 25th. Noon-1:30 EST / 9am-10:30 PST . Zoom and registration information to follow.

Please join NICA and our special guests John Burke, CEO of Trek Bicycles, Kristen Dieffenbach, US Center for Coach Excellence, and Lou Bergholz, Edgework Consulting for a special online event to celebrate NICA’s 10-year anniversary, the important role NICA, NICA teams and coaches play in creating lifelong cyclists and why including and inviting more student-athletes and families into the NICA community is more important than ever. NICA President Steve Matous will share his vision for what is next in these uncertain times and how NICA will continue to serve our student athletes, parents, coaches, for a vibrant and sustainable NICA future!

*Pre-registration will be required for this event, however the event is free and open to the entire NICA Community. Keep an eye out for more information and registration details coming soon!

NICA Announces 2019 Award Recipients

We are proud and excited to announce our 2019 NICA Awards Recipients. The NICA Awards honor outstanding student-athletes, coaches, alumni and volunteers who have positively impacted the NICA community and exemplify NICA’s core values and mission. Meet our 2019 recipients HERE.

VeloNews NICA Guide

“The future of cycling is with NICA!” We couldn’t agree more with VeloNews and are thrilled to see the continued growth and expansion of our community and programs across the country. Earlier this month, VeloNews released a series of articles focusing on NICA student-athletes, teams, leagues and alumni from across the country. Click HERE to check out their collection of stories about the impact NICA leagues are having on our nationwide community.

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Celebrating NICA Class of 2020 Seniors!

As we head toward what in any other year would be spring league championships, proms, senior pranks and graduation, our hearts go out to our Class of 2020 Seniors. We are proud of what you’ve accomplished as students, athletes, role models and mentors throughout your time with NICA and are thankful that you chose to make NICA part of your middle and high school career. We wish all our seniors all the best in their future plans and truly hope that mountain biking remains a strong part of their lives. From across the country - HERE are some snapshots and spotlights on some of our awesome Class of 2020 seniors!

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Be a Roll Model!

In our community - team comes first. The top of the podium isn’t the top of the mountain or the end of the trail. Laughter fuels us. Community binds us. And friends and family bring out our best. NICA is so much more than racing because life is so much more than a race. Today and tomorrow, the world needs NICA and right now NICA needs your support to keep rolling. The world needs Roll Models and we’re building them every day. Support NICA or your favorite league HERE.

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PeopleForBikes: Safe Cycling During Social Distancing

PeopleForBikes helps communities build safer, more comfortable places to ride, year in and year out. Despite the new rules dictating our daily lives these days, bike riding — safely — isn’t canceled. A lot of Americans are getting on bikes, many of them new to cycling or back in the saddle for the first time in years. Whether it’s a physical or mental break from being isolated or a way to get around town, bikes are helping us Ride It Out with a new socially distanced lifestyle learn more at: https://peopleforbikes.org/blog/safe-cycling-during-social-distancing/.

PeopleForBikes is a proud supporter of NICA because we know that when people ride bikes, great things happen.

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Photo: Aaron Puttcamp

SRAM and RockShox Partner with NICA

NICA is excited to welcome SRAM and RockShox as new Platinum Level National Partners. SRAM has been a proud NICA partner since NICA was established in 2009 and is excited to have RockShox join them and increase their support of NICA with a focus on supporting NICA’s GRiT (Girls Riding Together) initiative.

NICA President Steve Matous stated “SRAM has been supporting NICA since our beginnings and now with RockShox joining the team we know we will have the support we need to continue getting #morekidsonbikes and #moregirlsonbikes with their focus on women in cycling and our GRiT initiative. We could not have a better set of partners and look forward to continuing our work together for many years to come.”

“SRAM and RockShox believe in the power of bicycles, and are very proud of our three-year commitment to NICA,” says Sander Rigney, VP of Product Development at RockShox. “NICA’s programming fosters inclusiveness and community, which helps student athletes build confidence and develop connections with cycling that can last a lifetime.”

SRAM and RockShox are committed to pursuing gender parity in the sport of cycling and will actively be involved in helping NICA reach its goal of 33% female rider participation through collaborations with the GRiT initiative. NICA is proud to have support from an industry leader in not only components and suspension, but also female equity in the sport of cycling! Welcome and thank you SRAM and RockShox!

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Photo: Holly Alastra / Montana League

GoByBike with Trek

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There’s never been a better time to ride and Trek is asking us all to join them and #GoByBike more for our health and the health of the planet with three easy steps!

1. Choose your bike over your car for at least one trip each week;
2. Share the message by posting a photo of your ride and using the hashtag #GoByBike and;
3. Invite others to take action by tagging them in your photo.
1. Choose your bike over your car for at least one trip each week;
2. Share the message by posting a photo of your ride and using the hashtag #GoByBike and;
3. Invite others to take action by tagging them in your photo.

Learn more at: https://www.trekbikes.com/us/en_US/gobybike/

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Dine Composite from the Arizona League is a recipient of an Outride grant. Photo: PinkBike

Outride Grants Support NICA Youth Cycling Development

Outride has been working with NICA through its Outride Fund matching grants program to provide funding directly to NICA teams for young rider development. Learn more about Outride and the initiatives they supported in 2019 and 2020 at: https://www.pinkbike.com/news/outride-pledges-14-million-to-youth-cycling-initiatives-in-2020.htm. We thank Specialized Bicycles USA, a founding and platinum level sponsor of NICA, for being an anchor donor of Outride!

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Photo: Boris Beyer

Maxxis Continues Support of NICA in 2020

Maxxis is proud to renew their longstanding partnership with NICA for 2020! Allowing today’s youth the opportunity to learn, train, and compete in the outdoors offers an alternative to the traditional sports arena. The stars of tomorrow are turning pedals with NICA today. Maxxis is delighted to support the future of cycling, keep those pedals turning!

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NICA in Your Neighborhood

We're taking this month's NICA in your Neighborhood to spotlight some of our seniors and highlight those in the NICA community who are supporting COVID-19 relief efforts to keep our communities safe!

Do you have a great photo worthy of inclusion in a future issue of NICA News? If so, please email to media@nationalmtb.org and you may see it published! And don't forget - when you're posting your photos to tag @nationalmtb for a chance to see your photo in NICA News!

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Teamwork makes the dream work in @virginiamtb!

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Happy National Bike Month from @marylandmtb! They've been sharing rad photos all month long to show you the nuts and bolts of a NICA Maryland Weekend!

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Why walk when you can ride? Congratulations to the Class of 2020 from @utahhsmtb!

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The @sthelenathunderbirds are ready to rock next season with their new custom trailer!

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The Nevada League is rocking some awesome new GRiT tank tops this spring!

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@indianamtb wants to introduce you to their awesome staff - Say hello to the NICA GRiT Indiana coordinator, Daniela! Daniela is located in Schererville and is also the Team Director for the The Region Comp MTB team!

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