Formed in 2001, the El Cerrito High School Mountain Bike Club was one of the first organized high school teams in the Northern California High School Mountain Bike Racing League. Some of our riders have exceptionally competitive racing goals and some of our riders are on the team because they simply enjoy riding their bike with their friends.
The ECHS Team is a cross-country mountain bike team, a specific form of cycling which is different from road riding, downhill racing, dual slalom, trials, BMX, cyclo-cross, and track racing. Cross-country mountain biking includes the broadest range of skills, and team members often bring with them backgrounds and skills gained from the other sports. However, for the greater good of the team and high school racing, this team’s activities are focused upon preparing for and racing at cross-country mountain biking events only.
Mountain bike racing is for girls! This is definitely NOT just a male sport. While the team is co-ed, girls race Freshman, Sophomore, JV and Varsity against other girls only. Several of our adult riders are women, and events, such as women-only rides, are offered to the girls on our team.
The mission of ECHS MTB is to inspire in young people a commitment to athletic accomplishment, success through teamwork, and personal responsibility through mountain biking. ECHS MTB continues to welcome everyone, regardless of prior experience, and offers the coaching necessary for all members to improve their skills, focus, and self-image.
As with any sport, joining the team is a serious commitment. Members commit to multiple practices a week starting in late fall through the first week of May, six races in the spring, and all team meetings, which are held at school once a month during lunch.
Training and racing with a team provides life lessons in self-discipline, teamwork and sportsmanship, along with the fitness and camaraderie that comes with training with others. Some sports tend to favor certain body types. Cycling is different. The bicycle is an equalizer, capable of adapting to each rider with correct frame sizing, adjustment of seat height and stem length. Since good “bike-fit” is important, be sure to consult with the coaches before purchasing a new or used bike!
Parents are encouraged to join their athletes in training and racing. Your help is critical in helping the team travel to each venue. For those of us on the brink of sending our kids away to college and adult life, this is a special time to share. Families who were introduced to the sport by riding with their children described the experience as incredible, eye-opening, and lifestyle-changing.
No bike? No problem! If you are in need of equipment or a bike, let us know as soon as possible. We have a limited number of bikes that we are able to loan out. The team is also proud to offer full and partial scholarships to those who qualify.