Middle Park mountain bikers win first two cycling league races
Special to Sky-Hi News
The Colorado High School Cycling League season started off with the Middle Park team racing to first-place finishes at both the Cloud City Challenge in Leadville on Aug. 28 and the Haymaker race in Eagle on Sept. 10.
The cycling league season is well under way as the temperature starts to dip and the leaves on the aspens begin to yellow. The league is comprised of over 1,600 athletes on 83 teams from across Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming and South Dakota. The league is divided into 4 regions, with Middle Park assigned to the Platte region, which includes 18 other teams including a new one from Spearfish, South Dakota.
Middle Park riders dominated in Leadville on Aug. 28, capturing first place in Division III. Newcomers to the team, sister and brother duo senior Megan Davis and sophomore Josh Davis helped rack up team points, racing in the junior varsity and sophomore categories respectively. Josh had the highest personal finish for the team with a third place podium while Megan zoomed in to an impressive fourth.
These high placings have the Davises moving up a category each. Megan will move to varsity for the next race and Josh to the highly competitive junior varsity class. Also contributing points to the team win in the junior varsity competition were juniors Annie Kuhns and Cambree Burke. Senior Gray Barker also contributed team points in the varsity race.
The team’s head coach is Andrea Peters. Other athletes include seniors Luke Peters, Luke Vecchiarelli and Nate Myers, as well as sophomore Paige Vecchiarelli and freshmen Jack Pacocha.
The team’s second race of the season occurred Sept. 10 on the Haymaker course in Eagle where several state championships have occurred. Although the course was dusty and dry due to a lack of rain over the last three weeks, Middle Park again proved a powerhouse as they grabbed first place for the second race in a row. Megan Davis (fifth) and Barker (16th) raced in the varsity category, putting them amongst the top 10% of high school mountain bike racers in the state. The rest of the team also made big improvements with Kuhns and Josh Davis getting top-10 finishes in junior varsity.
Cambree Burkes, Nate Myers, and Paige Vecchiarelli achieved top-20 finishes in their respective categories. All other team members saw gains in their course times which is a testament to the hard work being put in by all athletes at practices. The team’s next race is in Steamboat Springs on Sept. 25th.
Look for a roundup of other high school sports coverage by Sky-Hi intern Ethan Boeckers on Friday.
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