Bike team rides as an official sport

Yusheng Xia, Editor in Chief

As the Mountain Biking season reaches its climax, the Diamond Bar’s Mountain Bike Team has completed four of its five scheduled races for the school year.

Currently in its second year as a DB sports team, the group is involved in the SoCal League and is ultimately trying to send racers into the State Championships in Monterey County on May 11. So far, eleven members of the team have qualified for the State Championships.

“Many of our last season’s riders now know what to expect at the races. It is very competitive in every category. They are training harder and riding longer to prepare themselves for the races,” coach Yoshimoto said.

The most recent event was the Cruise of the Keys race at Keysville on April 6. With over 400 riders from 50 different high schools competing, the high schools are split into two divisions with the top twelve put together in Division 1 and the 38 other schools put into Division 2. The Brahmas placed ninth out of twelve places in the highly competitive first division during the Keysville race. DB is currently ranked eighth overall and hopes to improve by the end of its last scheduled race.

“The importance of team standings is showing how well the team works together to earn points for the team and your own standards in the race,” co-captain Kenji Yoshimoto said.

Now on his second year coaching, Yoshimoto believes that many bikers have stepped up and improved from last year’s team. Bikers include Sophia Wang, Daniel Zhou, Andrew Tseng, and Kenji Yoshimoto, all of whom have qualified for the state championships. With the last bike race fast approaching and the state championships coming soon, the team has increased the difficulty of its practices and now meet about three times a week to help prepare the Brahmas for championship success.

“We’re moving our practices to more climbing areas like Marshall Canyon or Chino Hills State Park to prepare for our next race as well as the state championships,” Wang said.

The Cow Pie Classic race will also be of utmost importance to the team, as it is the last chance for those who have not qualified for state to gain an entry. Like most races, each race division is split into the categories freshmen, sophomore, junior varsity, and varsity.

“You have to get in the top 70% in your class for the race to qualify,” Yoshimoto said.

Each class of racers has its own race length with the freshmen biking 10 miles, the sophomore biking 15 miles, the junior varsity biking a 15-20 mile distance, and the varsity biking 25 miles. The Cow Pie Classic will take place on April 27 and will be the last regular season race. The mountain biking team looks forward to the final championship test to come.