Back for 2012, NEBC will be fielding another U23/Junior Development Team. This year’s addition of the U23 aspect to the team is in direct response to the fact that we had existing team members who last year qualified as Juniors but this year their age precluded them from Junior level competition.
The NEBC Junior Development Team was formed on the fly during the 2011 season based on direct demand within within the club and the community in general. Despite record numbers of younger participants in cycling of recent, there seem to have been a lack of beginner level development teams for junior racers and riders, at least at the club level. In the past, NEBC and its dedicated volunteers had been at the forefront of this effort. Unfortunately in recent years, the club membership has swayed more toward the senior side and the number of active club members with junior-aged children has diminished. This left the club without any definitive junior program and in fact, only a very small number of juniors within the club.
This changed in the 2011 season with a few key moves. The club managed to get a couple of active and motivated junior members who were interested in a team. At a board of directors meeting in late May a proposal was made and the club jumped on board. A team director volunteered from within the club to help drive the effort and be the club liaison for the team. The NEBC Junior Development Team was born.
The team quickly worked to ramp up with what they had, which was basically no clothing allocation and no budget but a bunch of motivated and enthusiastic members. What we did have was a club full of people that were more than happy to help out. We also had a fair amount of new old stock clothing from the previous vendor inventory. This was not the current run, for which there was no inventory, but it looked pretty much the same, was in stock and was free. From that we managed to get multiple jerseys for everyone, as well as a number of other obscure articles like socks, caps, arm warmers, water bottles and T-shirts. Despite these shortcomings, we managed to pull together a true team, a team that rode and trained together, a team that raced together and more importantly, a team that bonded. From these humble beginnings and three members, we quickly grew in size as the word got out. By the end, we had nine members on the squad, all of whom brought something unique to the mix.
2011 saw a great road and cyclocross race and training season. You can read about the numerous individual race undertakings in the NEBC Race Reports section of this site.
We focus on safety, responsibility, respect and fun. Great results are good but safety, fun and respect among your peers and the community in general is paramount. Each of us is an ambassador to the sport and it is through our actions that others, outsiders and insiders alike, view the sport of cycling. Above all, this needs to be fun for all of us. Racing is great but the more important message is that cycling is a wonderful, lifelong sport, be that racing or recreational. We strive to promote the sport that we love so much to these impressionable young people so that they will keep it as part of their active lives, forever.
The 2012 Season:
For 2012 we are back and even more focused. NEBC and its sponsors have made the team even more official and as such, we will look more official with new matching team kits. We will also broaden our scope and include Road and Mountain Bike racing during the summer and Cyclocross during the fall. We also plan to give the Track a try as well. It’s all about having fun and gaining experience on the bikes.
The specific details of the 2012 team race schedule can be found in the 2012 U23/Junior Development Team Schedule page. The team will also be regulars at the NEBC CBTT as well as on the local roadways and trails. Look for us at the races and say hello.
Those who make it possible: