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Rules for Riding




NICA Rules

This rulebook has all of the information that Riders, Coaches, and Parents need to know about how the league is structured, how scoring is done, what the guidelines are for team rides, and many many other important things. Because the rulebook is so long, one of our captains make a presentation to highlight the important facts, along with a quiz at the end to test your knowledge. Thanks Ronan! Great work.

Rules for Riders

These rules exist solely to help keep our right to ride as a team. You as an individual rider can hop on a bike and ride anytime and anywhere you choose, but that is not the point of riding with a team. You ride with a team so that you can regularly ride with a group of friends, improve your skills, learn from more experienced riders, ride new trails and routes, help less experienced riders get stronger, and enjoy the thrill and nervous excitement of racing in as safe an environment as can be expected. The coaches, ride leaders, and parents give you this privilege on the condition that you make a personal commitment to follow the rules below:

  1. Always wear a helmet
    No one wants to be sitting around for a month waiting for a concussion to clear up, let alone having someone spoon-feed you for the rest of your life. Even if you are the brother of a competitor sitting on a bike in the parking lot before a race, you must have a helmet on at all times. This rule applies to Coaches/Parents/Guardians/anyone associated with the team as well. Additionally, riders at league races caught without helmets, except on trainers, will be docked 25 points and/or disqualified from a race.

  2. Avoid Illegal trails
    We ride the trails that are legal, no exceptions. Marin County is blessed with open space, fire roads, singletrack, and hiking trails in an abundance that most other places can only dream of… we are allowed access to the trails we ride only because of the hard work that others have already put into bike trail advocacy. If you want more singletrack trails to ride, work with the coaches and parents to get involved with a trails advocacy group. Riding illegal trails because they suit your personal taste better puts ALL local mountain biking at risk. Riders caught riding illegal trails will immediately lose team riding privileges.

  3. Show up for two team rides a week
    Each rider must ride at least two of the four team rides each week. Coaches take roll before each team ride, and those who are not going to at least two rides per week will lose racing privileges.

  4. Ride safely and stay with your ride group when on team rides
    Mountain biking is a dangerous sport, and riders are exposed to situations and elements that are difficult to control. The best way to minimize danger is to ride within your limits and stay with your ride group. If something bad does happen, you can get immediate assistance from ride leaders and team mates for first aid, mechanical breakdowns, and perhaps food and water. Some rides take us hours away from home, out in the wilderness, and safety demands that we ride within our skills and as a group. Riders that purposefully leave their ride group without checking in with adult Ride Leaders or Coaches during the ride will lose their privilege to ride and race with the team. Riders who regularly ride beyond their skills and encourage others to do the same will also lose their privilege to ride with the team. Leaving a ride early to make it to jazz band practice is fine, just make sure that you let an adult Ride Leader or Coach know BEFORE you leave the group so that we are not looking for a mangled bike and unconscious rider off of a Tamarancho cliffside in near-darkness.

  5. Avoid trick riding on team rides
    Jumping off ramps, extended wheelies while riding in a crowd, curling berms and other free-ride dangerous maneuvers during team-sponsored rides puts the whole team at risk, not just the Rider.

  6. Treat each other with respect on and off the bike
    There should be nothing but support between all riders regardless of skill level or gender. Negative comments about team members will not be tolerated.

  7. Show trail courtesy – be the Spirit of Howdy!! (See http://www.spiritofhowdy.org for more information)
    When riding on Public Lands please keep the following in mind:

    • Always yield right of way to other users
    • Respect other trail user groups
    • Control your speed
    • Do not litter
    • Say Howdy to all users!!!
  8. Communicate with your parents, Ride Leaders, and Coaches
    Communicate with your parents, Ride Leaders, and Coaches when you are not feeling yourself physically or mentally – generally the adults around you are not good at reading minds, and over-communication is better than guesswork. Let them know how they can help you, when you need it!

  9. Read your Drake MTB email and texts
    Emails and/or texts are the most effective way for us to reach all of you with last-minute information concerning everything from events to race day logistics. Sudden changes in schedules and team activities are inevitable, so please stay informed. Join the Drake MTB Google group, and make sure you are receiving the posts.

  10. Participate in team fundraisers
    Our team is fully self-supporting and it takes everyone participating to make it successful. Please participate in all team fundraisers. If you choose to not participate, you can pay an “Opt-out” fee instead.

  11. Participate in trail maintenance at least once during the season
    The trails we ride only exist because of the efforts of folks that have built them, sustained them, and advocated for them, probably before you were born. Drake MTB respects that tradition and expects every rider to participate in at least one trail maintenance volunteer activity during the school year.
  12. Volunteer for local groups and events
    Drake MTB is an important part of the local community, and our voice and numbers carry weight in the communities where we live. Whether being active with MCBC, going to meetings on Marin open-space usage, or getting information out to the team on which local politicians support the team’s trail access agenda, each Rider and family member can have lasting local impact.
  13. Familiarize yourself with NICA rulebook
    The NICA rulebook contains a great deal of information, and reading it helps parents and Riders understand the need for some of the team rules above, how the races are run and scored, and a host of other rules and regulations that are helping high-school mountain biking grow into a mainstream sport: http://www.nationalmtb.org/wp-content/uploads/NICA-Rulebook.pdf
  14. Have FUN!
    Mountain biking is one of the best sports there is. It is excellent low-impact aerobic exercise that you can do for a lifetime. You can cover more ground and see more cool stuff than with any other sport – at least that is the belief of the team!