One of the by-products of the success of NICA and the Minnesota League is community. It’s so cool to watch the friendships that grow and develop amongst the racers from different teams as the season progresses. However, there’s another community that’s built as well. The parents of the racers, thrown together by their kids teams, have been quietly bonding over their own love for bikes. The Roseville Composite Team Moms formed a riding group they named “Crank Muthas.” The Moms of ISD 612 create their own group as well. Here’s their story as told by team Mom Tonja Sahaydak.

“The moms of the 612 teams (Southside, Washburn, Southwest) have started a riding group called 612 Southside Chain Chix. We get together every Saturday to ride together and encourage each other into other fun riding events like alleycats, gravel rides and #30daysofbiking.

Communication is done through our own Facebook page and then texting for last minute info.

The ISD 612 Moms bond over their love for their kids and biking.
The ISD 612 Moms bond over their love for their kids and biking.

Like our team, we have new riders and experienced riders. One mom, Linda Kerker, hadn’t ridden her bike in 5 years, until she joined Martha’s “mtb 101 team clinic for moms” last fall. Neither does she run. Yet she was inspired by a friend and the league to register for her first triathlon this coming August.

Kerker says, “I am truly amazed every time our kids get on their bikes. They make it look so easy! I am impressed how dedicated, brave, fit, determined, and fearless these kids are!”

Jennifer Markworth just bought a mt. bike to keep up with her husband and son who ride together. She has really enjoyed the new friends she’s made with the other team parents and supporting such a healthy, positive activity along with them.

The experienced riders have enjoyed an opportunity to get out and ride more often with others. Tonja Sahaydak admits that it’s easy to get busy find excuses not to ride. “But if it’s scheduled on the calendar and I’ve told people I’ll show up, then I HAVE to go.”

Since it’s a no-drop ride, the pace is at everyone’s level. The faster ladies in front just get more chit-chat time waiting for the others to catch-up at the next stopping point.

Team mom, Krista Post, came up with the idea to start the group after the passing of Charlie Siftar of Charlie’s Tangletown Bike Shop. He was a team ride leader who invested a lot of time into our kids. He was such a genuinely nice guy who loved his community. Krista thought that building community by bikes together would be the perfect way to honor him. Charlies wife, Rebecca, often joins in on the rides.”

Does your team have a parents group? Share your stories and pictures with us! Email your content to rayl@minnesotamtb.org.