The Minnesota High School Cycling League, which continues to make more mountain bike racers of young people across the state, reaches the apex of its season Oct. 28-29 with the state championships at Mount Kato in Mankato.

More teams and riders are expected next year, too, said league director and co-founder Joshua Kleve in an interview e-mail Tuesday.

“I am very excited for what 2018 will bring. Our growth rate continues to hold at 30 percent, with new teams continuing to form across the state,” said Kleve. “We have great accessibility for those living around the Twin Cities, but more and more outstate teams are starting up.”

There were 1,286 mountain bike racers, representing more than 100 schools, during five races this season, the league’s sixth. The first race was in late August in Austin, Minn., and they have spanned across the state from St.Cloud to Duluth, too.

For the inaugural season in 2012, Kleve had 100 coaches for 151 student-athletes. Close to 1,000 riders (representing grades seven through 12) will race at the state championships.

While inspired by the league’s popularity, Kleve said he also is lifted by some teams’ commitment to giving back through their work on public cycling trails.

More details on the state championships are online at minnesotamtb.org.

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