Sunday, November 12, 2006

12 Reasons to love Cyclocross

Since I'm not racing this weekend, I write a slightly less poetic version of a love sonet to cyclocross . . .

1) The Chaotic Start. Since a cross race lasts only one hour to 40 minutes, having a good start takes a whole new level of importance. The gun goes off and chaos insues. Most races start on pavement and turn onto grass, and then proceed to a very narrow turn at high speeds. Fun stuff.

2) Off Camber Turns. Being the Cat 5 squirrel, off camber turns add a bit of excitement that I think the more skilled cross rider misses.

3) Falling over endlessly. So this doesn't happen that much anymore. But I must have fallen about half a dozen times at Garnouge this year. The "s" turn on the down hill owned me. I think that race really taught me how to takes lines though, because I stuck around for the pro races. Just watching those guys seemingly "yawn" through the course was a lot of fun.

4) Witenssing live carnage on the course! Since the race is so chaotic, there tends to be a good amount of carnage on the first few laps. Riders flying over handle bars!! Riders eating sand!! All while you try to stay up right. One rider finished Beacon with a set of broken handler bars.

5) The feeling that my lungs are about to jump out of my body. It always happens on the second lap. My lungs explode! It is hard to explain. For the entire second lap, I'm usually so cooked that my lungs ache and I feel a burning in my chest. By the 3rd lap, I'm back to normal. (Maybe I'm just horribly out of shape.)

6) A good excuse to get up at 6:30 am on a Saturday. And if your race is on Sunday, you don't feel bad falling asleep on the couch Sunday afternoon.

7) "Hold your line!!!" The screams from other riders on the course. Now I freely admit not to being the best cross racer. But if you are racing the "C" race, I wouldn't come in with expectations that anyone is gonna hold their line. If it really means that much to you, you should probably quit sandbaggin in the C race or get a quick start and show us which line to follow.

8) Sandbaggin. ( I haven't seen that many sandbaggers this year but I'm too far in the rear to notice.)

9) The Mabsbs email list. If you want to read non-stop cross talk and non-cross talk then you should really join this list. You can easly kill half an hour of your day keeping up with this list.
Another great cross site . . . . is the video podcast CrossTalk.

10) Cross practice. A gathering of 12 like minded cross riders on a Wednesday afternoon, they teach you how to properly dismount, and carry your bike. I can't think of a better way to get muddy on a weekday.

11) The People! Cross riders kick ass. They are very easy going and are there to have a good time. My fellow cross riders make the race very enjoyable. I look forward to every race because of you.

and finally the beer! Drinking in the beer tent at the Wissahikon Cross with all the other riders, enjoying some quality cross racing was a great time.

So there you have it 12 reason, Cyclocross kicks ass. Now grab your bike and go ride!!

1 comment:

Ravi said...

hmmm, let's seee.....1) live carnage 2) chaos 3) exploding lungs....

your not really selling me on the sport!