So yeah, I got the cross racing bug after converting my commuter (Van Dessel Country Road Bob) into a full out CX bike, but I have a pretty small problem. Or make that a really big problem: I am slow. Like unbearably slow when I'm mixed in with my geared Cat4 brethren. Some courses with a good section of back single track I can hold on to, but today at Lowell CX (A fast, very smooth/straight course) I was a moving chicane for everyone (Especially the 35+ Masters). I am tired of being a DFL turtle!
This is a very big disappointment when I know for a fact how my fitness is to another racer, and I can utterly stomp on him be it on the track, or on the road. Yet on cross, with his gears, he's gone and I'm huffing, puffing and ready to blow that house down.
Yes, I did read the single speed cross page on ole Sheldon's site. I want more stories on how to really mix it up there.
One of my own problems that I think I have is that I end up staging in the back, and like most races, they start off on the straight, hard pack that I have very little chance of keeping up with (I have a good spin, but it isn't that good). But as time goes on as I ride, they just keep edging away. Then I'm stuck in my own little world and end up cruising half the time as I have no real incentive to catch anyone.
I train at least 3-4 nights a week on a fluid 2, gym it twice with free weights/squats/lats/pulls, run for an hour three times a week, and dudes on gears who drink all day are like "See ya!". I'm running a 38x18 gear ratio, Conti Twisters, and cheap Shimano brakes. Nothing out of the ordinary for a SS cross bike.
So tell me if you run SS Cross with geared guys, and how you are successful (or not) at it.
(BTW: thankfully next week they have a SS cross class. I am very much looking forward to it.)