USA Cycling announced today that Bentonville, Arkansas is officially “Home of the U.S. National Mountain Bike Team.” Fitness and skills camps in preparation for the World Cup racing season are set to be held in Bentonville and Northwest Arkansas, and are being funded by the Walton Family Foundation, the Rob and Melani Walton Foundation, and the Penner Family Foundation.
In a release USA Cycling praised the network of trails and gravel roads located in and around Bentonville. “Northwest Arkansas’ incredible network of singletrack trails and gravel roads is the perfect training ground for the National Team,” USA Cycling CEO Brendan Quirk said. “Our riders love racing and training in Northwest Arkansas. By deepening our presence here, we’ll make it easier for riders at all levels to get access to our racing development pathway and pursue their athletic goals.”
As the home of the US National MTB team, Bentonville will also serve as the national base for collegiate cycling racing. It’s not clear if the collegiate cycling operations will include all disciplines, or if they will only be limited to mountain biking. USA Cycling will continue to base its overall operations out of Colorado Springs, Colorado.
“Investing in collegiate cycling is a priority for this effort,” said Tom Walton. “We believe Bentonville is a natural host for this program and are confident this will elevate USA Cycling on the global stage.”
As a part of the announcement, USA Cycling is making clear its ambitions to win a Gold medal at the 2028 Olympics in Los Angeles. In 2020 the United States’ Jennifer Valente brought home Gold in the Women’s Omnium cycling track race. It’s not clear from the release which Olympic event(s) USA Cycling is targeting for a top finish in 2028. The US women also medaled in BMX and Team Pursuit in 2020.
The full release can be found here.