Biking for the alliance at the 8th annual Wangbang international mountain bike match

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DONGDUCHEON, South Korea -- Soldiers from 210th Field Artillery Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, take photo with the local riders during the 8th Wangbang (MT) International Mountain Bike Race October 19, 2014 in Dongducheon, South Korea. Over 2000 people participated in the 35km race that ran across Mt. Wangbang and winners were privy to cash prizes and well-deserved glory. Photo Credit: Cpl. Song Gunwoo (2d ID)
DONGDUCHEON, South Korea -- Soldiers from 210th Field Artillery Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, take photo with the local riders during the 8th Wangbang (MT) International Mountain Bike Race October 19, 2014 in Dongducheon, South Korea. Over 2000 people participated in the 35km race that ran across Mt. Wangbang and winners were privy to cash prizes and well-deserved glory. Photo Credit: Cpl. Song Gunwoo (2d ID)

Biking for the alliance at the 8th annual Wangbang international mountain bike match

by: Capt. Jason Koontz (2d ID) | .
U.S. Army | .
published: November 01, 2014

Dongducheon, South Korea -- On October 19th, Soldiers from the 210th Field Artillery Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, took part in the 8th Annual Wangbang International Mountain Bike Match.

The Wangbang International Mountain Bike Match is a major event for the city of Dongducheon. The Commander of the 210th Field Artillery Brigade, Col. Michael J. Lawson, joined Mayor Oh Sea-Chang, the Mayor of Dongducheon, for the opening ceremony and to fire starting guns that began the day's races. Col. Lawson also spent time encouraging the riders and checking out their bikes.

Throughout the day, riders from the Thunder Brigade had the opportunity to socialize with Korean riders and project the spirit of goodwill through friendly competition. 1SG Willie Vines, the First Sergeant of HHB, 210th FA BDE, spoke about the bond that the Thunder Brigade continues to develop with the people of Dongducheon.

"I think that this is important to build camaraderie between the community and the military as they see us come out and we see them. We know that we all have one goal and that's to protect the Republic of Korea!" said Vines.

The match is an event that draws amateurs and professionals from across South Korea and the world. The course is a difficult one that forces the rider to utilize every skill in their mountain biking tool kit. With long and grueling climbs, fast downhill's that switch from single track to improved trail and paved roads, the rider must constantly be aware of the conditions and make adjustments as necessary.

Maj. James Brandt, the 210th FA BDE Aviation Officer, was excited about the race. Finishing in just under two and a half hours, he had nothing but great things to say about the race organizers and the people of Dongducheon.

"I love the city of Dongducheon, this has been a great time and a great race, I have been in the outdoors every single weekend since I have been in Dongducheon, I love it, they have really supported us" said Brandt.

Many of the Soldiers serving in the Thunder Brigade echo this sentiment. The city is nestled in the mountains and provides easy access to great food and entertainment as well as plenty of outdoor sports and recreation to keep even diehard outdoors enthusiasts busy.

The 210th Field Artillery Brigade is proud of its standing within the Dongducheon community and is honored to be able to take part in community events across the Geyonggi-do province.

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