Founded in the 1980s, the Colorado School of Mines cycling team was revamped in 2005. Today, the club has about 35 active members who participate in mountain biking. Types of mountain biking are cross country, short track, downhill and endurance racing, cycle cross, and road racing, including team and individual time trials, criteriums, and road races. The cycling season happens during both the fall and spring semester of school with a short break over winter break. This year’s president, Ian Bloomfield, only participates in the fall, during the downhill mountain biking competitions, but Nick Jimenez, the team treasurer participates in both seasons. Both would vouch that their event is better than the other, but when it comes down to it, they are both bike racing events.
The club allows for as much or as little training as the participants want. Throughout the year, the club offers one ride a week that is a group social ride where riders can meet other riders, talk biking, and get a in a good work-out. The team has numerous stationary bike trainers for wet, or snowy days. When asked about how much training is needed, Jimenez said, “For the serious racers training is almost a year-long thing, typically consisting of six to seven days on the bike a week, with both distance and speed workouts.” But not all cyclists at Mines have the time or dedication to put that much time into cycling. On this, Jimenez said, “If you want to be a successful bike racer you need to spend a lot of time in the saddle.” Not all members participate in the club to be serious bikers, some have joined to simply have a fun and enjoy the thrill of competition received through racing.
Races take place in several locations across Colorado including Steamboat, Durango, Red Feather Lakes, Sol Vista, and many more. The team fee of $50 covers the costs of transportation, lodging, and race entry fees. Within two races, the fee usually pays for itself, and with a third race, the required collegiate racing license also will pay for itself. There are no requirements to attend all races, but according to Jimenez, “They are a ton of fun!” The best way to join the team is to sign up for the mailing list at the club fair at the beginning of the year. Club Cycling also has a Facebook page with information on races, signing up for the team, and general information about the club. This year’s CSM race was canceled so look for the team next year when they race around Mines.