Leaving a Tread – Israel Carrillo talks the future of mountain biking in Mexico
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The bustling city of Guanajuato, Mexico, is full of culture, colors, and an unexpectedly flourishing mountain bike scene. Although too humble to accept this title, Guanajuato local and Kona Bikes and WTB ambassador Israel Carrillo is one of the driving forces behind this unique mountain bike community. Israel wears many hats as a mountain bike athlete; he’s the local bike mechanic, trail builder, and community leader with a contagious stoke that encourages both kids and adults to get out and ride.
Israel started getting into mountain biking as a means of transportation and quickly learned that racing down the city’s intricate staircases was a lot more fun than simply pedaling to swim practice. Back then, mountain biking was very new to Mexico and there were few nearby trails for Israel to ride. Fortunately, the city of Guanajuato sits at the base of the mountains that reach over 10,000 ft, so it didn’t take long for Israel to figure out that his backyard provided the perfect terrain to build bike-specific trails. “I mainly started trail building because of the necessity of having trails to ride,” Israel explains as he shows us how his trail building has evolved with the growth of mountain biking in Mexico. Israel started trail building simply because of the need for trails and now digs to leave trails that will allow the next generation to ride and progress far beyond what he himself has accomplished.
“I don’t need a sign saying like, Israel Carrillo built this trail. I just want that a young gun can rip a trail better than me.”
– Israel Carrillo