Has the long road season made you weary? are you looking to get muddy and put a little more fun between your legs? If so, then you’re in luck! The 2009 cyclocross season is just around the corner! After GMSR and Bear mountain pass, you’ve got 2 choices: Go into hibernation and start your monk-like training for the 2010 Road season (boring), OR you could come out and give Cyclocross racing a try! Cyclocross racing is experiencing Double-digit growth year over year, with more and more new racers trying it out every season. If you’re curious about the sport and what you need to get into it, now is the perfect time to have your questions answered!
So why race ‘cross? There’s a whole slew of reasons! ‘Cross lets you simultaneously extend your racing season and have some fun at the same time. The "scene" at CX races in the northeast is much more mellow than the road races around here, and once you’re done with your race you typically grab a few beers and cheer (and sometimes hurl beer) on your friends racing in other categories.
Don’t get me wrong- Cyclocross is HARD. You’re going as hard as you can for 40 minutes; riding, jumping, running, slogging, tripping, gasping, and trudging all over the place. Rain does NOT cancel a CX race, and many of the most epic races of the season (like a certain race in Staten Island) were in terrible weather conditions.
So what do you need to get into Cyclocross? It’s Pretty simple:
1) A Cyclocross Bike! Major CX Brands include Kona, Ridley, Salsa, Felt, Bianchi, Independent Fabrications, Van Dessel, and Scott, to name a few…
2) Mountain Bike shoes- you’re gonna be doing some runnin’ and those Sidi Ergo’s with speedplays aren’t going to cut it. Sidi Dominators are a pretty popular choice here.
3) Mountain Bike Pedals- you’re going to want a pedal that’s easy to get in/out of, and sheds mud well. Popular pedals include Time ATAC and Crank Bros. Eggbeaters.
4) Embrocation: Gotta keep those legs warm in the colder months! Some Brands include : Mad Alchemy, SportsBalm, Sportque, Agu, and Greyhound Juice
5) Belgian Beer- for Post Race Recovery, Duh…
6) a Cowbell: you’ve just gotta have more cowbell!
There are Cyclocross races Every weekend this fall, from Mi d-september all the way through to December. The "Scene" at cyclocross races is a bit less serious than most road races- the northeastern cyclocross scene has a fantastic sense of camaraderie, with racers drinking beer and cheering on their friends that are racing in other categories.
Ok, so- once you get your bike, shoes, and pedals together, you’re going to need to know how to ride the thing! Luck for you, our weekly Cyclocross practices will be starting every Tuesday Evening from 6-8PM on Randalls Island, Starting Sept 8. Think of it as your FBF Substitute. At the weekly practices we’ll work on skills by doing drills and simulating race conditions. There are always veteran CX’ers at the practices, and they’re the best guys to learn from!
If you’re wondering what the best races of the season are, Have no fear- I’ve done all of the Work for you! Follow the link below for a Google Calendar showcasing the best CX races in he Northeast! To make it even easier for you, every race on the calendar has a link to the Bikereg page- just double click on the race and you’ll see the link.
CYCLOCROSS SEASON KICKOFF PARTY
In order to get everyone excited about the upcoming cross season I’ve Teamed up with the guys at NYC Velo to put on the first annual 2009 NYC CX Season kickoff party!
WHEN: September 12th from 9:00AM-11:00AM
WHERE: NYC Velo – 64 2nd Avenue (between 3rd and 4th streets)
We’ll be featuring the Wafels and Dinges truck outside the shop, free espresso inside, and a monster sale – 15% off ALL CX related items, including bikes!! Gee, what a perfect time to pick up that bike you’re gonna need!
We will also be playing the ‘09 World CX Championships on the big screen, and we’ll have a couple of laptops handy to get you signed up for upcoming races, as well as a sampling of the hottest embrocations around. There will be NYC ‘cross veterans in attendance (Maybe even a National CX Champion), so come and get your questions answered!