Line choice discussion before a timed DH race practice. Photo: John Dougall
It was a pleasure to work with 10 very motivated and passionate Jr. Downhill athletes on the new Seven Summits Gravity Racing (SSGR) program. Based out of the West Kootenays, this is the first organized downhill race team to come out of this mountain biking Mecca. After months of on-bike technical coaching and race-scenario training, the team performed admirably at the BC Cup series with numerous top-five results.
Hats off to team manager Ian Finke for his tireless efforts to make this team a reality. In truth, it has been a dream of mine but I couldn’t commit to managing a team beyond my coaching efforts, and Ian was the missing ingredient.
This program has proven very popular and next year will include a feeder program for ages 10-12, a development team and a more focused race team for Jr’s age 13-17. It’s truly been a pleasure to grow mountain bike racing in the Kootenays. We’re also looking towards organizing a high school DH race next season, and hopefully sharing and emulating our program in other communities to increase race participation across BC. More news on this in the coming months!