West Virginia Cycling League Kicks Off Second Season for Local Youth

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CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) -There is a league of young mountain bikers growing in the state of West Virginia, and their sport is about more than trophy’s and medals.

It’s also about building a community of racers of boys and girls.

On a bright sunny day in South Charleston at Little Creek Park, the West Virginia Interscholastic Cycling League, kicked of its first race of the season, the Little Creek Classic.

“This is our second year here(Little Creek). . . This our second year as a league. We are a brand new league, and we have doubled in size,” said Cassie Smith, league director WVICL.

Cassie Smith said about 140 kids from middle school to high school are participating this year, making up 13 different teams from all over the state, including one from Athens County Ohio.

“The Kanawha team, who is a local team, they have over 30 riders. The Morgantown team is pretty big too”.

The Little Creek Classic is a two mile race that was almost “mudded-out”last year, but this year the conditions were just right for racers to battle each other uphill for position and for fans to cheer.

“You know fun jumps, fast down hills. . . I mean what can’t you love about it,” said Levi Smith, participant in Little Creek Classic.

The race was broken into Waves for boys and girls, with 14 different Heats based on school grade.

Levi Smith, who is sixteen years old, said he enjoys mountain bike racing more than driving a car.

“There is nothing else like it”.

The league director said the sport is more than about winning and going fast, the sport’s core values (Equality, Inclusiveness, Strong Body, Strong Mind, and Character) are its foundation.

“I have been mountain biking for 25 years, and it has been such a positive thing in my life, and I just knew West Virginia needed something like this,” said Cassie Smith

Mountain bike racing can be an expensive sport for some families with bike costs ranging from the hundreds to the thousands, so the league offers assistance to families who can’t afford a bike, so nobody feels left out.

The league has five races scheduled on it website this year. The next one is Rally in the Valley at Canaan Valley Resort State Park on Sep 14th and 15th.

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