Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Northern VA
Bikes: Colnago Dream Lux, Orbea XLR8R, Lemond Alp du'ez, Giant XTC, Specialized S-Works Tri-cross
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Originally Posted by csetchel
Give me some advice!!! I pretty much know nothing about it, but it looks like a lot of fun. How much do entry-level bieks cost? Is it possible to convert my old roadie? When is the racing season and where are the races in GA so I can go watch one? Please help me out!!!
Well, I just went thru all of this over the past few months, did my first race last Saturday (got totally spanked)...Yes, it is fun, but hard. Most of the riders are in very good shape. It will test pretty much all of your cycling skills and requires total body fitness. A typical 'cross course has a bit of everything - multiple laps (typically around 3 km per lap, give or take) on pavement, gravel, grass, single track, mud, barriers, even stairs, lots of turns, dips, and climbs. About 85% of the riders belong to a team, but it's not required usually.
Most road bikes won't work - not enough tire clearance and no mounting bosses for canti brakes. Try modifying an old hybrid instead if you're on a budget. Some riders will use mt. bikes with slightly narrower, less aggressive tires. "Best value" for new 'cross bikes is probably the Fuji cross, or the Redline Conquest (around $900).
Racing season is generally mid-Sept thru mid-Dec. Try www.georgia-cross.com
. Don't be too embarassed if you get dropped like a rotten pumpkin your first few races; it is very demanding, physically and mentally. It's also good motivation to stay in shape till the end of the year. Good luck!