Nogales, Sonora will host a four-part mountain bike race series for the first time this summer.
The races, which begin on June 4 and run through August, are open to riders of all levels.
Oscar Corona, owner of the Nogales, Sonora shop Xtreme Bikes and an organizer of the Serial Mountain Bike Nogales series, said the event is meant to unite various local bike clubs and highlight the city’s trails.
“We were thinking of a way to just join everybody (together),” Corona said. “What better way to do it than getting (them) into an event, in a race, all together?”
Corona said mountain bikers of all ages and abilities are welcome – there are races planned for children, masters (people 50 and older), beginners and experts – and encouraged spectators to watch and eat at the food trucks that will be part of the event.
He explained that various clubs are hosting races at the trail that they built and maintain. The first race is hosted by the N2R club and set for 7 a.m. on June 4 at the Santo Niño Trail.
The June 25 race is hosted by the Gatos Salvajes at the Arrieros Trail; the July 16 race is hosted by the Escorpiones at the Escorpista Trail; and the Aug. 13 race, hosted by Xtreme Bicycling and Escuela de Ciclismo, takes place at El Colegio Trail. The start times for the later races have not yet been determined.
Bob Bennen of Nogales, Ariz. said he is excited that there is a new local race. In the past, he said, “anytime you’ve ever had to race, it’s always you’re traveling” to Tucson, Phoenix or Flagstaff.
Bennen said his goal for the series is to improve his speed on each lap and course.
Nogales, Sonora resident Alma Somoza said she is excited to “show our trails to the people (in) other cities,” and make her all-women team proud.
Corona said the series is a reflection of mountain biking’s growing popularity in Nogales, Sonora. He attributed that trend to social media, suggesting that when people post photos of their rides on Facebook and share extreme downhill videos, it encourages others to hit the trails.
“It’s one of those kinds of sports ... it grows on you,” Corona said, adding: “It’s very addictive. If you like it, you’re going to like it a lot.”
At every race, medals and T-shirts will be given to the top five fastest men and women, and participants will receive points based on their performance. At the end of the series, cash prizes will be given to the five men and women with the most points. These awards will be given to winners in every category except the beginner and kids races.
It costs 600 pesos (about $32) to participate in the series or 200 pesos (about $11) for individual races.
Helmets, sunglasses and gloves are required.