Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Some interesting videos making the rounds on the Bay Area Cyclocross Group e-mail list. 

It will be very interesting to see if Stybar can maintain his success when the courses are made up of mud, ice, snow, frost, downpour, and the racing slows dramatically & becomes much more technical.  The conditions so far in Europe have been fairly tame during 2010 Cyclocross.

Watch as riders plow through the roads that are nothing but mud bogs and swamp-like sections of course.  I like the chaos of the pit zones with no real structure at all, just a free for all with riders fighting for a new bike from their support crews.  The leaders were putting out some serious power on one of the most mud filled race routes I have seen for Cross.  The crowds were extremely thick over the entire course and sometimes were acting up at fever pitch, but that race looked simply out of this world hard!  Some of the running sections were endless and the mud that day was first class.  I must admit that the riders of that era were excellent bike handlers in the slippery slop, and their Cross moves on and off the bike are beautiful to watch.  Lastly, that tree log-stair run up section appeared to be overly steep and incredibly demanding to conquer, it had the slower riders just crawling upward to make the top.

I like the running start.... we need more of those now a days.  You have to check out the stream-water crossings in this video.  Any time you see riders tossing their bikes first into the stream and then jumping in after, you have to appreciate their creativity.  A few riders really sling their bikes far, and have to really fish for the bikes in the deep water to just find them as they proceed to cross the obstacle.  Listen to the commentator mention the racing ages of the group back then, he says 12 to 40 years old.  They might have better water crossings then Nor-Cal Cross today, but we top them in age variation.  Nor-Cal Cyclocross now has some select events with free kids races where 6 year old youths take to course, as well as some of our most senior riders- 65+ Masters aged studs who I personally admire and respect for their fitness and fire for life!

Lastly, I always liked Hans Kellner's video work of select events.  Kellner literally gets right into the action, and his helmet camera videos are legendary!
2010 Monkey Cross #1 - Men's B Start

 It was good to see Alex Candelario claim the win at this past weekend's Sac. Town race.  It would be really good if  Ben Jacques-Maynes, Andy Jacques-Maynes, and Candelario battled against each other and the other top Elite Men Cross racers of the NCNCA this season.   Having those three top level Road riders, who all can race Cross at a equally high level,  test the current crop of Nor-Cal's best pure Cross athletes would make for some very interesting action on course.