We are the West Virginia Interscholastic Cycling League, a chapter of the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) – a California-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. As one of 21 leagues across the country, we organize a mountain bike racing league for middle and high school student athletes. Above all, we consider ourselves a youth development organization, whose goal it is to build strong body, strong mind and strong character in our student athletes, with an unwavering focus on inclusivity and equality in everything we do.
Enable every West Virginia teen to strengthen body, mind and character in the most equal and inclusive way through the life-long sport of cycling.
What does “every West Virginia teen” look like?
Our goal is for the WV Interscholastic Cycling League to become a household name in the state. We envision interscholastic cycling to become so integrated into West Virginia’s middle and high schools, that students could not imagine what life was like before interscholastic cycling. Every West Virginia teen who so desires should be able to participate in our league.
What does “equal and inclusive” look like?
West Virginia consists of a vast spectrum of socioeconomic neighborhoods, our goal is to provide students from across the state with access to the league and play an active role in overcoming any financial and logistical barriers. And of course, no one sits on the bench, everyone races and earns points for their team.
What does “life-long” focus look like?
We are a youth development organization that places the long-term health and well being of the student athlete above all else. We hope to infuse in our student athletes a passion for an active and healthy lifestyle that stays with them for the rest of their lives.
Establish a fun, enduring and relevant 6th to 12th grade mountain bike program to improve the lives of West Virginia’s teens and their families.
What does “enduring” look like?
Stability. We are here to stay and thus our business practices matter. We will follow sound business policy, leadership and financial accountability and responsibility.
What does “relevant” look like?
Having a presence across the state, and continuously growing our number of student athletes for the first 5 years of operation, to the point where we need to split into two regions to accommodate all racers.
What does “improve lives of WV’s teens and their families” look like?
Our organization is focused on making a difference in the lives of West Virginia’s teens and their families. That concept of making a difference is what inspires our leaders and coaches; it’s not about today’s win or competition, it’s about making a difference – one kid at a time.
Strong Body – Strong Mind – Strong Character – Inclusiveness – Equality
Core principles guide every decision we make, how we act and conduct our league.
HOW IT ALL BEGAN:
Matt Fritzinger, a teacher at Berkeley High, founded the League with the 2001 NorCal High School Mountain Bike Racing Series. As the coach of the Berkeley High team he saw that a school team could succeed, but that competition would be required for it to thrive. In the first series mountain bikers from schools all over Northern California answered the call and came to compete as semi-organized high school teams. Now well over 50 California schools offer well organized mountain bike programs and is spreading to states all over.
The West Virginia League is committed to teaching safe riding practices. We believe forming high school teams is the best way for students to learn how to ride safely. To learn safe riding techniques or to learn how to teach these skills, join our next rider camp or coaches conference. For up to date news and info join our e-mail list, or send an e-mail directly to WV League Director Cassie Smith and let us know how you’d like to get involved.