National Interscholastic Cycling Association selected the Utah High School Cycling League as its next League, a significant step towards NICA’s mission of taking high school mountain biking coast to coast by 2020.

The chain of high school cycling leagues now runs: Washington, California, Utah, Colorado, Minnesota, and Texas spanning almost 50% of the width of the USA.

Matt Fritzinger, NICA’s executive director, said “We were very impressed by the strength of the Utah bid and the groundswell of support for high school mountain biking in Utah. Lori Harward and her team are doing incredible work and the opening season next fall is going to be fantastic for Utah youth.”

Lori Harward, the new director of the Utah League, said “This is a great thing for Utah. NICA's five core principles of inclusivity, equality, strong body, strong mind and strong character are what attracted me to NICA. As cycling coaches, my husband Dave and I have been looking for ways to get more kids into cycling for some time. NICA’s all-round package is perfect for kids and community, and we’re all really excited to be part of this tremendous national movement!”

Lori attended the inaugural NICA Conference in August and was able to tap into not only the NICA knowledge base, but also that of her more experienced peers who are at different stages of development with their respective leagues.

Generous sponsorships from Harristone, Simply Mac Racing – a premier cycling club, and Park City Point-2-Point have helped give the new Utah League a flying start.

The Utah High School Cycling league will receive a NICA Grant and a wide range of support services as the successful applicant from several groups in the ongoing NICA bid process, which challenges organizers to surpass requirements for community and financial support. The newly formed NICA Grant program helps upstart leagues cover start-up costs and is made possible by NICA's generous sponsors.

A Leader's Summit for coaches will take place in the spring and racing will commence in the fall of 2012, interested coaches should contact Lori at View the Utah League website at

Also announced at this NICA launch was the NICA Indie Club program, which is covered in a separate press release, NICA Launches Indie Club Program.

About The National Interscholastic Cycling Association
Founded in 2009, The National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) is the National Governing Body for grades 9-12 interscholastic mountain biking and fosters the development of high quality competitive cross-country mountain biking programming for high school aged athletes. NICA provides leadership, governance and program support to promote the development of interscholastic Mountain Biking Leagues throughout the United States. NICA exists by virtue of generous donors and sponsors including the founding national sponsor, Specialized Bicycle Components, as well as Easton Foundations, SRAM, Trek Bicycles, Clif Bar and Co., Primal Wear, Shimano, GU Sports, Kinetic, Maxxis, adidas Eyewear, CamelBak, Crank Brothers, Dirt Rag, Feedback Sports, Fort Lewis College, Fox Racing Shox, Mellow Johnny's, Mountain Bike Action, QBP, Ritchey Designs, WTB, and Yakima.