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High school mountain bikers converge at Coast Gravity Park

High school mountain bikers converge at Coast Gravity Park

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Mountain bikers in the North Shore league gather to race at Sunshine Coast Gravity Park. Rik Jespersen photo

More than 200 high school mountain bikers held races for the first time at Sechelt’s Coast Gravity Park after years of holding annual competitions at Sprockids Bike Park in Langdale.

The North Shore High School Mountain Bike League, with participants from every high school from Pemberton to North Vancouver, along with bikers from Elphinstone and Chatelech Secondary Schools, gathered at the world-class park for their annual meet April 20.

“They break the races into groups of Grade 8s, 9s, 10s, and then 11s and 12s together,” said Bob Stanhope, a co-coach of the mountain biking team at Chatelech. “Depending on their age, they’ll do one lap, two laps or three laps.”

Stanhope, who got involved years ago when his own kids went through the Sechelt secondary school, said winning these races wasn’t the main point in participating.

“What I like about biking is this is a team event, yet it’s still an individual event. You’re racing for a personal best,” Stanhope said. “You don’t have to be first. If you only just manage to finish, you get one point and that point goes toward your team’s standings. And if your team wins by just one point, you could be the person that makes that difference.”

Stanhope said organizers wanted to try Coast Gravity Park for a different challenge for the kids.   Rik Jespersen

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