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From single-speed to downhill, if it’s a bike, Fraser’s Christine Tucker, 55, will ride it — and rack up national titles

From single-speed to downhill, if it’s a bike, Fraser’s Christine Tucker, 55, will ride it — and rack up national titles

Christine Tucker one her winning run at the 2022 USA Cycling Mountain Bike National Championships last month. Christine Tucker was just a middle-school kid in…

Saturday, Aug 13

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Christine Tucker one her winning run at the 2022 USA Cycling Mountain Bike National Championships last month. Christine Tucker was just a middle-school kid in Mississippi when she and her dad embarked on a mission that was ahead of its time.

Mountain biking was still in its infancy — you might even say it was a zygote. It was 1977 (or ’79) and Christine was 10 or 12 years old, she says. The youngest of six kids, her parents were so busy, “there are very few photos of my childhood,” she adds. But she loved riding bikes on dirt and up hills and over jumps so much that she and her dad built , effectively, their own mountain bike prototype.

“We found a bike frame in a junkyard and built it up using whatever parts we could find,” she said. “I think the frame was a Schwinn and I spray-painted it black. The wheels were 24 or 26 inches. My dad and I built it in our carport in Ocean Springs, Mississippi.”

The first time she took that slick, black machine out for a ride, “My front wheel came off and I landed on my chin and I had to get stitches,” she says. “My mom wanted my dad to take the bike and throw it away because it wasn’t safe. They bought me a new one but it was a road bike. I took it off road and on local dirt trails anyway.”

As she used bikes to launch herself off of […]

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