Greetings from New Jersey, now officially the 19th NICA league getting #morekidsonbikes.
I still have a difficult time putting into words what we have accomplished. At heart, I’m a hardcore numbers guy, but this is one of the few times in my life where numbers fail me: More than 200 registered student-athletes, supported by more than 100 coaches; two out of five races successfully completed; more than 2 years of hard work by a core team that doubled from 9 to 18 members along the way; 8 amazing league level sponsors; hundreds of hours on conference calls, and on and on.
Team Podium from the first New Jersey Race! 1st Place – Princeton Area Composite, 2nd Place – Essex Composite, 3rd Place – Don Bosco Prep HS. Photo: Don Madson
These numbers don’t even begin to describe what we have accomplished. We have built a community spanning multiple generations, bonded together by a common passion and belief: giving back to the sport we love, sharing our passion for this sport with the next generation, making a difference in the lives of others.
And every one of us on the core crew has witnessed firsthand how we already have touched lives: parents commenting how they have seen more progress in their child’s development than any other point in their lives as a result of the camaraderie and self-confidence gained through their participation in our league; coaches getting stoked about a student-athlete regularly making eye contact after permanently staring at the ground when they first joined the team; amazing displays of sportsmanship in victory and defeat; teens stoked about finding a place where they feel they truly belong.
Sophomore Boys start. Photo: www.jamesvansetta.com
We build self-confidence and community, two traits that are powerful and rewarding beyond measure.
I am extremely proud to be part of an incredible team that’s bringing youth Mountain Biking to New Jersey! New Jersey Interscholastic Mountain Biking – NICA Core Crew and Coaches, what an incredible group of peeps, giving the gift of their time to make a difference in the lives of our youth!
Thank you all for your friendship, support and dedication to the New Jersey NICA League!