USA Cycling Names 6 Bears to the 2018 UCI Mountain Bike World Championship Team

We are so excited to announce that USA Cycling has chosen 6 of our BEAR athletes and 1 BEAR alumnus to represent the United States at the 2018 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships, taking place in Lenzerheide, Switzerland on September 5th-6th!

“This Mountain Bike World Championship team represents the best U.S. athletes across the board from Junior to Elite. I expect them all to represent the United States well. I feel very good about the strength and depth of our… teams and am also looking forward to seeing great performances from… our deep and talented team,” said Marc Gullickson, Performance Director of USA Cycling’s Mountain Bike Program.

The Bears chosen to Team USA are as follows:

Junior Women XCO:

Mina Ricci (Woodacre, Calif.; Bear Development Team p/b Trek)

Madeline Robbins* (Durango, Colo.; Bear Development Team p/b Trek)

Junior Men XCO:

Paul Fabian (Prescott, Ariz.; Bear Development Team p/b Trek)

U23 Men XCO:

Carson Beckett (Brevard, N.C.; Bear Pro Team p/b Trek)

Jerry Dufour (Birmingham, AL; Bear Pro Team p/b Trek)

Sandy Floren* (Berkeley, Calif.; Bear Pro Team p/b Trek)

Elite Men XCO:

Luke Vrouwenvelder (Chapel Hill, N.C.; Bear Pro Team – Alumnus)

Bear Applications Open August 1st!

Applications for the 2019 roster on Bear Development Team and Bear Pro U23 Team will be accepted August 1st – August 24th.

The categories of our MTB team include:

  • junior 15-16 boys & girls, elite & race teams
  • junior 17-18 boys & girls, elite & race teams
  • U23 men & women, elite teams

Members of the elite teams & members of the race teams are equally a part of the BEAR community!  Members of the elite team are fully supported by our equipment sponsors. Members of the race team are partially supported by our equipment sponsors.

About The Application:

Our application process consists of a questionnaire and 4 document uploads:

  • your race resume
  • a personal essay
  • one cycling recommendation letter
  • one personal recommendation letter

We welcome applicants from all 50 states!

If you are younger than 15 years old but still want to learn more about Bear Development Team, please reach out to us at

We cannot accept any international riders, or any riders that are older than 23 at this time.

Decisions will be published on September 7, 2018 via

Meet Junior Rider Adam Croft

This Friday marks the tenth week of Bear Development Team’s Junior Series! We are honored to dedicate our weekly post to the introduction of one member of the Bear Development Team.
Check in every week to get the inside scoop on Bear’s Junior Team!
This week, meet…


Racing Age: 18
Hometown: Toano, VA
Race Bike of Choice: Trek Top Fuel 9.9 RSL
Favorite Training Song: “God’s Plan” by Drake
Best Post-Ride Snack: Cherry Yoghurt

My name is Adam Croft. I’m from Toano, VA. When I was 7, I realized I loved riding my bike. Whether it was just around the yard, or going on easy road rides with my dad, it was always a blast. From there, I started getting more serious about cycling and began racing road and mountain bike on the weekends. For me, the thrill was being able to race the men’s races, and do my best to race people that I looked up to. As I grew older, and moved up through categories, the racing became more serious. My parents traveled and took me to junior nationals to race every year. Racing has certainly been awesome with my family there to support me. I can’t thank them enough.

Now when I’m not racing or doing school, I’m working for an HVAC and plumbing company. I love the physical aspect of it and helping people. In the winter, hunting takes up most of my time while I fill the freezer for the coming year, and have fun while doing it.

Bear Development has certainly been an amazing opportunity in racing. The support and people make the traveling and racing easier and more fun, and the friendships we make while together at races will last a lifetime.

Meet Junior Rider Sam Roach

This Friday marks the eighth week of Bear Development Team’s Junior Series! We are honored to dedicate our weekly post to the introduction of one member of the Bear Development Team.
Check in every week to get the inside scoop on Bear’s Junior Team!
This week, meet…


Racing Age: 17
Hometown: Roanoke, VA
Race Bike of Choice: Trek Top Fuel 9.9 RSL
Favorite Training Song: “Freaks and Geeks” by Childish Gambino
Best Post-Ride Snack: Almond Butter & Banana Toast

I’m pretty sure I was born on a bike. I never really remember when I started riding because my infatuation with speed is the thing only that occupies my earliest memories. My father was a speed junkie who raced cars, BMX, road crits, long road races, and now mountain bikes. Mom was a Marathon runner who has done about as many marathons as miles in one. I was born either to ride or run and since it allowed me to go faster, the bike was the obvious choice. I wish I could start my bio off with something that being on Bear doesn’t already tell you about me but cycling truly makes up my earliest of memories.

I started racing consistently at five and since then have kept up the same pace. Racing my bike is an addiction for me, not winning. The pain, competition, preparation, and adrenaline make up something that I can’t live without. Where I come across the line in relation to my competition has only ever been a small part of that addicting rush of racing. Going fast and doing my best brought wins just as every other Bear rider has a collection of, but winning, although motivating, was never as much the desire as simply going fast. I strive never to race a category I can win to better myself and to feed the motivation that keeps my fire burning.

In my early years, my life’s sole motivation was riding my bike way too fast every moment my life could spare. Although these early years shaped my abilities on the bike (and reshaped eight bones in my body), I regret not being more expansive. When I was in middle school, I fell in love with running track and grew an obsession with running the mile as fast as possible. It gained me a previously unfamiliar respect amongst my schoolmates. In eighth grade, I managed to run a sub-five-minute mile which ironically ended my spike and rubber career. After pushing my legs too hard, I developed a calf problem which has a name I cannot pronounce and made doctors tell me “never to run again.”

After my unpleasant endeavors in public school, I began attending The Miller School of Albemarle, Virginia. The Miller School is essentially a castle that houses a prestigious boarding school and around two hundred students representing seventeen different countries. Here, I discovered a love for photography, writing, and culture. Despite those self-defining passions given to me by the school, Miller’s high-level cycling team is what drew me to it the most. The team is made up of some of the most decorated junior riders from multiple different countries and an unrivaled dedication to making its athletes extraordinary. Freedom to ride every day and to travel for racing coupled with hands-on coaching from accomplished ex-pros made my career take off. Without the success cultivated by my coaches and schoolmates, racing for Bear might still be a distant dream.

My parents make this dream possible and I owe everything to them for their love and support (not to mention the genetics). My little sister is always there to make me laugh… especially at myself and, no matter how much we fight, I’d be lost without her. My grandpa has come to cheer me on at races nearly ten hours away and offers unconditional support no matter my performance or passion. When I’m stressed about racing or school, my best friends Aaron and Sabrina keep me grounded, offering motivation at every turn or falter. These people are the main frame of who I am and the roots of my success. Thanks to them I am, as ex-pro and genius trial-smith Andy Guptill always say, “living the dream!”


Meet Junior Rider Ruth Holcomb

This Friday marks the seventh week of Bear Development Team’s Junior Series! We are honored to dedicate our weekly post to the introduction of one member of the Bear Development Team.
Check in every week to get the inside scoop on Bear’s Junior Team!
This week, meet…


Racing Age: 15
Hometown: Boulder, CO
Race Bike of Choice: Trek Top Fuel 9.9 RSL
Favorite Training Song: “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift
Best Post-Ride Snack: Watermelon

I always liked to ride my bike, but I didn’t decide that I really wanted to race until about 7th grade. I had jumped into a few local races, but had never really thought of it as one of my main sports. In seventh grade, I went to several races in Arizona, Colorado, and New Mexico and realized that I loved to ride. The next year, I went to even more races. Since fifth grade I had been racing under the guidance of my Durango Devo coaches who have helped me so much along the way.

I was born in Boulder, Colorado. I grew up loving the outdoors like most other people there. I went to a bilingual school there where I learned both English and Spanish. As a result from that, I speak both English and Spanish fluently. As for sports, I played soccer, swam, and rode bikes. I can tell you that at the time, I wasn’t a huge fan of biking unless my mom brought a lot of gummy bears. At age ten, my family decided to move down to Durango. I was originally very against the idea, but as soon as I went riding with their bike club, Durango Devo, I decided I loved Durango.

I now attend Durango High School. I enjoy math and science and hope to become an engineer. The Harry Potter book series is also my all time favorite series. When I’m not on my bike, I run for my high school’s cross country and track teams, and I nordic ski race. I also ride for the Durango Demons mountain bike team during the fall for NICA. Competing in all these different sports makes it easy to keep biking fun.

I live with my mom, my dad and my two sisters, Maggie, who is 12, and Betty who is 10. We love to ride bikes, hike, raft, and explore together. Maggie and Betty are also super into riding bikes and ride with Durango Devo. Durango is the perfect place for my family, with lots of mountains and trails to explore!