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Student takes challenge of mountain biking to new heights

When many high school athletes this fall are participating in school sanctioned sports like cross country, soccer, tennis, football and volleyball in front of their peers, there are others who participate in competitive athletics that also deserve recognition.

One of those is Payson high school sophomore, Brock Bleggi, who takes his talents riding his bike in the mountains, competing in the the Utah High School Cycling League.

Brock began mountain biking about four years ago, riding on the trails in Payson Canyon.

It was two years ago when he started racing, and he says that he really likes the challenge of it.

“Mountain biking is really challenging,” he said. “I’ve had to learn balance but have speed at the same time. Each race track is different, so it’s fun doing all the different courses. One of the hardest things I have had to learn is to be able to pace myself for the whole race.”

According to his coach, Jordan Nielson, he has quite a talent for it.

“Brock is an incredible athlete,” Nielson said. “This is only his second year racing and he’s beating kids that have been training and racing for a lot longer than he has. He doesn’t rub it in with other riders either. He just rides hard, crushes the competition, and then quietly chills and enjoys the victory. Then he gets to work preparing for the next race.”

With two more races to go, including the state championships in Cedar City on Oct.18-19, Brock has his sights set high.

“I would like to finish this year as the state champion, race in other leagues and continue to improve every year,” he said.

Even with the exciting competitive parts of racing, Brock says that his favorite part about racing is all the people he meets and friends he has made.

He said that he’d like to tell others who are thinking about racing, that it is a lot of fun and you’ll make a lot of friends.(Submitted to Serve Daily by Anderson Brown. Brown is a sophomore at Payson High School and lifelong soccer player. He enjoys learning about the athletic journeys of other student-athletes through writing this column.)