The Whole Athlete Junior Development Team recently kicked off its 2010 season with a two-day training camp in Marin County, California. The team of 20 junior and under 23 riders spent two busy days filled with sponsor presentations, season planning meetings, yoga, and plenty of riding, all in preparation for what promises to be an ambitious third year for the squad.
The team's roster includes proven talents such as 2009 NorCal High School MTB League Varsity Champion John Bennett, 2009 California Junior state road champion Nick Newcomb and Will Curtis and Davis Bentley. The latter two participated in USA Cycling's European Mountain Bike Race Camps in 2009. Another standout member of the team is 2009 NorCal High School JV League championship runner-up Victoria Yoham.
The Whole Athlete team is looking to build on a highly successful 2009 season. By registering as a UCI trade team in 2010, the team will provide providing the opportunity for 10 riders to compete at the international level in the World Cup Finals in Windham, New York, at the end of August. This will be the focus of the third of three nationwide camps and event-specific trips, the first being the "Spring Classics" of North American cross country racing, which include the Fontana and Sea Otter Pro XCT rounds, followed by a Lake Tahoe / Colorado Altitude training camp in July, which includes the Colorado Springs Pro XCT and the US Mountain Bike National Championships.
Team founder and head coach Dario Fredrick, himself the current 40-44 cross country mountain bike US Champion, said that working with the Whole Athlete juniors is a constant source of inspiration. "We have some very talented individuals on our team, riders who have the potential to become successful professional cyclists if given the right tools and opportunities. But what constantly amazes me is the team's sense of cameraderie and their ability to balance dedication to pursuing goals with having fun on their bikes."
"These kids are the future of mountain bike racing in North America."
The team receives some sponsorship, but travel, entry fees, and operational expenses are funded by individual donations to the non-profit Velo Development Foundation, a 501(c)(3) corporation.
For more information on the team, visit www.wholeathlete.com/team.htm.