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I just came back from a visit to the Norcal High School Racing Camp, a one week session, held at UC Santa Cruz, home of the Slugs. 23 participants, 8 of whom were girls, represented the best in the Norcal High School Racing League and 2 fine riders from out of state in Idaho. Matt Fritzinger and Dylan Gradhandt, league founders, managed the group with four coaches, all racers and former racers, including one woman for the Girls Team. Additional coaches from the League Teams dropped in throughout the week to provide support with the exercises and races.
Racing occurred daily with Skull Sessions and some leisure activities which included a nightly viewing of Le Tour de France. The kids dug the Time Trial; they have learned to appreciate skill. The Camp was devided into 3 groups, one for the girls and two for the boys, one more advanced than the other. Each day the results of their races were figured into a General Classification and there was much interest.
I was just there to watch and photograph their individual Time Trial, and their Group Shot, and was very impressed at how close the competition was and how well they treated each other. The campers were paired up in rooms with their season competitors and, instead of staring each other down as they did at races all year, they got to hang out together and get to know each other.
I know that both the race training and the social structure will pay off next year. The venue, the new dorms and other facilities at the Slugs Campus, was perfect. Security was good for all of the valuable bikes and the wash area handy. Food was across the street at the commons. The damp overcast made the trails firmer and more grippy than they might have been otherwise, and the racing was hard and safe. I was proud to be a little part of this.
We are very lucky to have this.


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