High school bike racing squad competes for first time as a team

 

High school bike racing squad competes for first time as a team

Team has three racers and eight members so far

BY HUGH MCMILLAN

Special to the Gateway

April 16, 2014

On the first Sunday in April, the rains stopped long enough for a successful second running of the Washington Student League bike races on trails in Key Peninsula’s 360 Trails Park. Last year’s event was on hot, dry, dusty trails. This year, trails did not erupt in billows of dust as bike riders flashed over them.

Gig Harbor High School sophomore Erik Pitkanen of the Peninsula Composite Mountain Bike Race Team crosses the finish line.

Gig Harbor High School sophomore Erik Pitkanen of the Peninsula Composite Mountain Bike Race Team crosses the finish line.

event started at the new Key Pen Park’s Gateway Park, which is contiguous to and affords access to the 360 Trails Park. On the latter, assembling the large number of bikes, riders, support equipment and personnel last year was uncomfortably crowded. So much so, organizers were reconsidering future use of 360. Gateway, on the other hand, has vast open fields to assemble whatever is needed. Everybody was happy.

 

For the first time in the event’s history, our community entered a team in the competitions.

 

“All members are part of the new Peninsula Composite mountain bike race team that formed this year as part of the Washington Student League (washingtonleague.org),” wrote the new team’s coach, Andrew Hosford. “We have two more races this year,” he said, “And we are looking forward to growing for next season and hopefully adding girls to the team. Riders are encouraged to join just to get out and enjoy mountain biking and if they feel comfortable enough they can also try racing. So far, we have three racers and eight informal team members.”

 

Hosford added, “Monica Ivey and Bret Bowen are parents who deserve a shout-out for helping a ton this year.”

 

Coach Hosford teaches journalism at Peninsula High School, which boasts the many-award-winning high school newspaper, The Outlook. See: phsoutlook.com. Hosford is also the school’s yearbook adviser.

 

For further information on the Peninsula Composite mountain bike race team, contact coach Hosford at Andrew Hosford hosforda@psd401.net.