Junior equipment managers join Mountain Biking Team

Dylan Foster, Field Reporter

Photo by Dylan Foster
Member Zach Carlson works on his pedal.

The mountain biking team has acquired some new team members. The only difference is, they do not ride the bikes, they make sure the team rides safely.

Juniors Will Gasperini and Isaac Robinson have joined the mountain biking team as new equipment managers. The equipment managers ensure that the equipment is ready for the bikers to ride.

Stillwater’s mountain biking team is one of the only teams in the state to have equipment managers. This could be very helpful for gaining more wins and helping them rise the in standings

“[We are] Basically mechanics for the team so any bike problems, we fix the bikes, we get the races ready so come race day we are out on the field,” Gasperini added. “Any problems with any bikes or anything, we take care of.”

They could not have picked up some tools and began working without the knowledge of how to build and fix a bike, so they needed some outside information in order to do this job.

Robinson said, “We know a guy who works for a company called Park Tools and his name is Calvin Jones. He’s a really good mechanic so he taught us most of the stuff we know so we’re sort of like the mechanics along with him. “Although they have just recently picked up this job of being an equipment manager, Robinson added, “I don’t wanna be cocky but I think we’re pretty good mechanics. We haven’t been working on bikes very long but we work really hard at it.”

I don’t wanna be cocky but I think we’re pretty good mechanics. We haven’t been working on bikes very long but we work really hard at it.”

— Isaac Robinson

Although they would not have gotten far without help from mechanic and team director Calvin Jones. The teacher of the two equipment managers, Jones, is proud of how they work and help the team.

“We are the only school in the entire state that uses student equipment managers. Most teams use a parent or a guy from a bike shop or some sort of adult,  but we specifically wanted to involve the school and involve the students,” Jones said. He added how he met and knew the E.M’s and said, “I did not know them. We interviewed them, having the team captains there and myself, we interviewed a few people and  they seemed to be the standouts and they were friends and that was a good connection so we went with them and we are very happy.”

Being equipment managers needed quite a bit of time and skill and without Jones and the Penn Cycle bike shop’s help, they may have taken a lot longer to figure it out. Being teens themselves also can help team chemistry, as it is much easier for a teen to talk with another teen than a random adult.

Jones said, “[The E.M’s] are willing to get along and work with others, the mechanical skill is actually down the line, we can teach mechanical skill but the things that they have, the go get em attitude here, the setting up of the award stands, they don’t stand around waiting for work to be assigned they go find work and dealing with their peers it’s not a common thing to find a student that’s able to deal with their peers and tell them that they’re mistaken and try it a different way.”