IMIC Master Coach
Squamish, B.C, Canada
Head Coach & World Class Rider - Racer
Shaums March is changing the way people look at mountain biking. For 10 years, the three-time World Team member has schooled his competitors (and by becoming the first African American to win a NORBA National race and to be chosen to attend the Mountain Bike World Championships, he quite literally altered the face of the sport). Today, he’s also schooling in a different way: offering clinics, workshops, and camps across North America.
Besides improving the way riders approach mountain biking, the 2-time Masters World Champion is also enhancing the way the general public perceives it. “People think that it’s just a matter of throwing yourself down a hill – they don’t realize how precise it is,” he states. March is blazing a trail toward new competitions that he believes will change the image of mountain biking and its athletes forever.
Although March was born in Haines, Alaska, in 1974, he spent most of his childhood and young adulthood in California. March started competing in BMX races at the age of 12, but he found his true calling when, just out of his teens, he switched to mountain bike contention in 1994. In 1996, he was crowned California State Champion, and two years later he finished just off the podium in fourth place in the X Games Downhill event.
Later in 1998, March won the NORBA Downhill event in Breckenridge, Colorado. Not only was it his first victory as a pro in the prestigious National Mountain Bike Series, it was the first NORBA National victory for any African American. The rider still calls it the most emotional moment of his career.
March was the fastest North American at the 2003 World Downhill Championships, and he finished second overall in 2004’s BC Cup series. But his versatile skills and passion for his sport took him not only to World Cup and other traditional comps, but also to innovative freeride events like Red Bull Rampage (a jawdropping contest on the red cliffs of Utah) and Red Bull Bike Battle (an urban jam in Boston, where March podiumed in third place).
COACH, ORGANIZER, ADVOCATE
With a personality that’s as solid as his skills, March elicits superlatives like “one of the most gifted riders in the game,” “always the most popular racer on the course,” and “one of the greatest assets to mountain biking.” He’s also renowned as one of the best coaches the sport has ever seen.
Although MMR is based in British Columbia – near the home he shares with his wife, Aleisha (a four-time X Games gold medalist) and son Isaac – March and other certified MMR pros offer clinics and coaching from coast to coast, for both serious competitors and recreational enthusiasts. Over the past 8 years MMR Riders have won numerous national titles including that of 2-time US National Champion Duncan Riffle.
I met Shaums a few years back while working on the second Red Bull FreezRide. It was kind of a surreal experience, considering he was one of my favorite riders. I think his unique style, and solid movie segments set him a part.
Since FreezRide I have know Shaums to be one of the most solid personalities and riders in the business. He goes out of his way to spread pedal love. He is one of the most gifted riders in the game; the fastest North American at the World Championships and throwing down a 3rd place performance at the urban focused Boston Bike Battle.
Shaums versatility is precisely what makes him one of the best coaches in mountain biking. He has a huge range of experience that enables him to relate to the challenges his students face and create coaching that actually makes sense.