Experience the spirit of The Highlanders

Organized High School Racing

Highlanders is part of the Front Rangers as an avenue for students that don’t have a Cycling Team at their High School.  Together, we fill this need in youth cycling development.

Extreme Sports Biking
A Never Ending “Adventurous Journey”

Highlanders is a composite team providing an opportunity for students grades 9-12 to make new friends and compete in the Colorado High School Cycling League.

High School Composite Team

Highlander Racing

The Highlander Racing teams compete in the Colorado High School Cycling League in cross-country mountain bike racing.  The “Highlanders” provides a great opportunity to make new friends and compete with peers across the state.

  • Athletes within D-38 and D-20 are eligible to ride with Highlanders with some exceptions.  Contact Us about eligibility if unsure before registering.
  • Highlander Racing may encompass school-based scoring units when we have sufficient riders from a particular school.  Past scoring units have represented Palmer Ridge, Lewis Palmer, and Discovery Canyon.  All other riders participate in the “Highlander Composite” scoring unit.
  • The season runs late July – October with practices on Tuesdays & Thursdays from 5:00-7:00 pm.
  • There are four regular season races leading to the State Championship. Racing is highly encouraged, but not a requirement.  Races are typically held in scenic Colorado locations like Leadville, Glenwood Springs, Eagle, and Frisco.

Open the links below for more details.

Joining Highlander Racing

The Highlander Racing organization serves athletes in the D-20 and D-38 school districts in northern Colorado Springs whose schools do not already have a school-based race team.​

To join the Highlanders​

  1. Register with the Highlanders team here.​
  2. Register with the Colorado League here.
    • If you attend Palmer Ridge or Lewis Palmer, select the “Palmer Ridge” team and use passcode “Palmer_Ridge”
    • If you attend Discovery Canyon, Pine Creek, TCA, Rampart, Liberty, or Ascend, select the “Highlander Composite” team and use passcode “Highlander”
    • If you are unsure if you should join Highlanders based on your current school or home location, Contact Us here.​


  1. What are the costs to join the Highlanders and participate in races?
    • Highlanders team fee: $320​
    • Colorado League fee: $160​
    • Colorado League races: $75 per race with the option for a bundled discount​
    • [Note: costs are current as of the 2023 season]​
  2. If we’re paying the Colorado League to participate, what are the fees for Highlanders team used for?
    • The Highlanders team fee includes your racing kit (jersey and shorts) as well as costs to train coaches and maintain team equipment​
  3. When do we need to register?
    • You should register as soon as possible to ensure you receive all communications and kit orders.  In general, registration opens in February, and kit orders are placed in May.​
    • You must register with the Colorado League in order to practice with the team due to insurance and League policy.  Registration with the League generally begins in April, and you’ll need to be registered before practices start in late July.​
    • If you do not purchase the season race bundle, then you will need to register for each race individually by noon on Monday the day before the race. If you do not register by the deadline, you will not be able to compete and there are no exceptions.​
  4. Why does the Highlanders registration ask me about Front Rangers?  What is the difference?
    • Highlander Racing is a high school racing organization that participates in the Colorado League​
    • Front Rangers is an organization that provides cycling opportunities for youth ages 12-18 across Colorado Springs. Highlander Racing is under the umbrella of Front Rangers and is only for high schoolers attending schools in the D-20 and D-38 districts.​
    • Most of the Highlanders also participate in the Front Rangers mountain biking club but it is not mandatory​
  5. I’m homeschooled, can I still join the team?
    • Yes!  We have several homeschoolers on our team.  If your “neighborhood school” is within our boundaries, then you may join the team.​
  6. Can you tell me more about the Colorado League and the rules for competing in high school cross country racing?
    • The Colorado League maintains a fantastic website with information about the races, rules, venues, clinics, discounts, and camps. Check it out here:  coloradomtb.org

Highlander Race Season Info

Pre-Season: April through July

  • Planning & informational meetings​
  • Team Registrations​
  • Kit orders​
  • Team Captain applications​
  • Social events​
  • Volunteer events​
  • Occasional rides as approved by the Colorado League​

Race Season: Mid July through October​

  • Team campout and season kick-off​
  • Practices on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 5:00 to 7:00, in the Colorado Springs area​ — Mt Herman, Pulpit Rock, Ute Valley, Red Rocks, Stratton, Palmer Park, Santa Fe Trail​
  • Four regular season races, schedule is at coloradomtb.org/race-schedule/
  • State Championship at the end of October​

Post Season: November through March

  • Annual Halloween Skeleton night ride​
  • End of season Awards Banquet​
  • Fundraising​


  1. I’m not sure if I should join Front Rangers or Highlanders?​
    • If you are not sure which group to join, try Front Rangers first. Highlanders is more competitive and race-oriented.​
  2. Do I have to participate in the League races to be a part of Highlanders?​
    • No, racing is encouraged and will help you build your abilities; however, you may participate in the team without racing However, you must be registered with the League in order to practice with the team.​
  3. I just found out about Highlanders and the season has already started, can I still compete?​
    • Yes, the League is focused on encouraging everyone to compete and have FUN, so you may register as late as October and compete before the last regular season race​.​
  4. If I participate in another sport and cannot attend all of the Highlander practices or races, can I still join the team?​
    • Yes, there is no minimum number of practices or races required to participate. However, we do set a minimum level of participation in order to letter or serve as team captain.​
  5. What are race weekends like?​
    • Our races are held on either a Saturday or Sunday of the race weekend with a pre-ride of the course available on the day before (for example, a pre-ride will be held late Friday afternoon for races scheduled for Saturday)​
    • Race schedules are published by the Colorado League on their site for each race with an associated “Call-up” list which identifies the starting position for each registered rider.​
    • Each team has a “pit” where we are able to hang out, fix our bikes, and eat together. The team sets up the pit before the pre-ride and takes it down after the last race is completed.
    • Race days are high energy weekends focused on encouraging your fellow riders. Every weekend has a fun spirit contest for teams to compete with each other by showing the most team spirit.
    • We have cooking gear in our pit supplies, and our families coordinate to serve the riders and their families on race day since most venues do not have easy access to dining.​
    • Most families will spend at least one night at the race venue. The League posts information about accommodations and camping options for each venue.​​
  6. What kind of bike do I need?​
    • The most important feature of your bike is that it’s fun to ride.​
    • Your bike should be well-maintained and ready to ride for each practice and race day.​
    • Many of our racers ride short travel full-suspension bikes at practice and race day. However, a few of our racers like to use a lightweight hard-tail for race day.​
    • Refer to the League’s rulebook for restrictions. In general, e-bikes, single speeds, and bikes with dropped bars are not allowed.​

Lettering and Team Captains

Freshman and Sophomore Athletes​

  • Qualify for and race in the state championships and place on the podium in any league race. Earning a varsity letter as a freshman or sophomore is challenging, and only a small percentage of the team qualify each year.​

Junior Varsity & Varsity Athletes​

  • Qualify for and race in the state championships.​

Criteria for All Athletes

  • Good Academic Standing – Meet school GPA eligibility requirements for lettering.
  • 6 hours of volunteer service related to the biking community or trail advocacy.​
  • Colorado League Service – athlete volunteers for the Colorado Cycling League at a race or at the League headquarters in Boulder.​
  • Consistently attends practices and team functions, has a positive attitude, encourages and supports teammates, and communicate well with coaches​.
  • Follows Rules – athlete always follows team and Colorado League rules and safety guidelines and acts as a good ambassador for the sport, League, and high school.​
  • Coaches Discretion may be used for a junior or senior athlete who demonstrates exceptional commitment to the team and to improving as a rider​.

Team Captains​​

  • Team Captains are expected to meet the “Criteria for All Athletes” listed above​.
  • Athletes interested in serving as a Captain should submit an application by May 15​.
  • Team Captain applicants should be returning racers (Seniors, Juniors, & Sophomores)​.
  • Athletes who apply will be selected by the Highlander coaches and announced no later than the Kick-off Campout​​


  1. What are the requirements for good academic standing?​
    • Since we represent several different schools, the requirement may vary. Please contact your school counselor to find out the expectations on GPA for involvement in extracurricular activities.​​
  2. If I volunteer with an organization that isn’t related to biking, does that count?​
    • In most cases, we would like you to volunteer in support of our sport. If you believe that your volunteering activity is related, please contact the head coach for an exception.​​
  3. How do I find out about volunteer activities that count toward lettering?​​
    • The Highlander coaches and parents will communicate different trail work and/or biking event volunteering throughout the year​.​
    • For volunteering with the Colorado League, sign up for positions at the race venue here.​
  4. What do Team Captains do?​​
    • Captains are the leaders for the team and will serve in various roles throughout the year. Responsibilities include: serving as a role model to all team members, ensuring a healthy team culture, organizing social events, coordinating spirit competitions at races, communicating with the team throughout the year, decision-making about events throughout the year, and other activities that you think will make our team AWESOME.​

Parents Info

Highlander Racing is an organization run by volunteers. As a parent of a racer, you’re joining the journey to develop the character and abilities of our racers and build a community that supports the team.​

We need you! There are various ways to pitch in and help out:​

  • Complete a background check and League requirements for Level 1, 2, or 3 certification.
  • Commit to attending at least one practice per week​.
  • Contact our head coach if you are interested in serving as a coach​.

Highlander Support Crew​​

  • Supporting our racers throughout the year takes a village, and we have several “teams” for parents to join and volunteer throughout the year​.​

Volunteer with the Colorado League.

  • Every race is run by a small staff from the League and an army of volunteers.  Highlander parents are expected to volunteer at the races and support the immense effort to support these venues throughout the season.  Volunteer here.​

Support Financially

  • Our registration fees do not cover the full cost of running the organization.  We utilize generous donations and sponsorships in order to meet the needs of the team and provide a complete experience.  You can donate online here.  Be sure to check if your employer provides matching.​


  1. I’m new to the team, am I expected to be a coach, volunteer at the races, and contribute financially?​​
    • No, you are not expected to do everything.  However, you are expected to find your niche and help out in your own unique way in support of the team.  Highlander Racing is a completely volunteer organization, and it takes all of us to make it run.​
    • Our team will be designated to provide volunteers for at least one race weekend each season.  Parents and riders are expected to volunteer during that weekend and encouraged to volunteer at all races.​​​
  2. If I would like to coach, what are the requirements?​
    • Please check out the requirements from the Colorado League here​.
    • You will need to complete various levels of training depending on what level you desire to achieve.  In general, we need as many Level 2 coaches as possible.
    • Training from the League is offered through various clinics across the state in the spring and early summer months.  See their site for the latest offerings​
    • If you are already serving as a Coach for Front Rangers, then you have completed all the requirements as a Level 1 coach.  However, you will need to register with the Colorado League and maintain all certifications throughout the season​.
    • You will need to conduct an interview with our head coach in order to be selected as a coach for the team.​​

Here Are Some Additional Resources

Folks Who Make The Team Possible

A HUGE Thank You! to all of these Generous Sponsors who support youth through Front Rangers Juniors Cycling!