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iRide @ Aldergrove

iRide’s Vancouver crew ventured out to Aldergrove last week, welcoming new apprentice coach and local U23 racer Jackson Pickell.  The crew was led by head coach Wes “Tubs” Ochitwa and assisted by Zayne Heyes, with Jackson shadowing and learning along the way.  A total of six classes made for a busy day and provided an iRide experience for 180 students.

Wes reports:

Autumn is a fine time to explore the inner adventure and ability of one to push through the elements to find what lies inside… heart! Heart is what iRide staff Zayne Hayes (a.k.a. Coach Princess), Jackson Pickell (a.k.a. Coach Pickle), and Wes Ochitwa (a.k.a. Coach Tubbs) were greeted with at Alderdgrove’s Parkside Elementary School last week.

Blustery and precipitous fall mornings and afternoon rain repeats didn’t hold back these amped grade 3s and 4s from exploring mixed terrain through trail rides, and extended school ground games on bikes. Games chock-full of camp vibes and imaginative trail and park challenges such as “first one up Leprechauns Hallow, over Doom and Gloom Mountain (a grass hill) back to camp base (a retired summer water park)” and then “first one round Wizards Willow tree smashing it through the pot of gold leaves (piles and piles of fallen golden Maple leaves)”. Each of the 6 classes presented the coaches with at least two non-riders or never-ridden-before students and those coaches had at least two from each of those groups join the rest of the pack by day 3 of a 4 day session.Bring it on Fall. Can’t stop, won’t stop, iRide!


Zayne reports:

Parkside Centennial Elementary was a blast to coach at this week. Each class provided its own unique challenges as skill levels varied between the classes. Using a progression from group cycling drills and some fun, tricky race courses, the young riders had nothing but huge smiles on their faces. Coach Pickle, Coach Tubs and I split time effectively getting 12 brand new riders pedalling confidently on their own as well as charging up the more advanced riders in each class. I was really happy that the program ran smoothly despite the weather. The kids brought great energy every day and it was a blast to add some of the school’s gymnasium toys to our courses.

Jackson reports:

For my first time at iRide it was great to start with a group who had a lot of energy and was very enthusiastic about riding their bikes. The students made good improvements over the four days and were able to make use of the riding terrain around the school. It was an exciting learning experience for me and I am looking forward to the next school to inspire more kids.

This week I was given the name “Coach Pickle” by Wes, which quickly took off among the students.

I will remember each kid who learned to ride a bike this week and quickly progressed to group riding , it was great to see how happy the students were to learn.


Looking to become involved in iRide as a coach? Cycling BC is hosting a 2nd NCCP Let’s Ride and Basic Cycling Skills certification event over the weekend of November 21st and 22nd.  This full 2-day program will provide you with the certification needed to coach at an iRide program or run group rides as part of your local club.  To register, please contact Our full coaching full calendar can be found here.

If you’re a fan of Cycling BC’s iRide program, check us out on TwitterInstagram, or Donate to support our programs in your area. To learn more about booking a future event, please contact us at or (604) BC-iRide.

"iRide YAH!"
This week's obstacle course featured some fun swiss balls from the school's gymnasium...yehaw!
The winner of the week's "Most Enthusiastic" award. The class team leader! Wes reports: "Every day she came out rare'n to go, outfitted in her trusty neon rainbow reindeer finger flip mittens and just charged it. She was a real leader to the group as well, checking in with her peers that they were sharing a fantastic and fun experience, offering her assistance to those who needed it, and being a leading example of an A+ all star lil rider.
Apprentice Coach Jackson "Pickle" Pickell helping out