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  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    My Bikes
    Specialized Tricross Sport 2009, Giant Yukon FX3
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    First cyclocross race!

    I wasn't sure I'd ever get to compete in a cyclocross event - there's no regular calendar anywhere in Australia. But a pilot event came to the Warburton Cycle Fest, 2 hours from me. Preparation could hardly have been worse: 4 days after returning from a 5 week pastry tour of Europe, still jetlagged, hadn't been on the bike until the start line pretty much. Missed the pre-ride, and only just got tyres changed in time.

    But! It was fun. A 2.5km course featuring obstacles such as play equipment, chainlink fences, a knee-deep river crossing (!), and a pretty long section scrambling down a muddy track with steps. 45 mins, plus added time if required to separate the lead pack (not clearly explained). There were two categories: 26" and 700C. It was really surprising to see all these CX bikes come out of the woodwork: apart from cross-checks, I've only seen one or two on the roads in the 2 years or so I've been riding one. There were three Spec Tricrosses, a Cross-check, a couple of Meridas, a few high end CX bikes, and a number of what looked like converted road or MTB frames.

    I was never in the hunt. From the get-go I realised how much fitness I'd lost, and I couldn't possibly compete. Plus, taking a wrong turn (misunderstood a marshall's direction) on the first lap didn't help. I also didn't realise how hard mounting quickly is, nor how much energy it takes to get off, climb over a hurdle, and get back on - my heart rate was screaming each time through that section.

    I really hope there'll be more events though. 45 mins is pretty short though, when you're talking about a 4 hour round trip to get there. Luckily on this day I was also able to compete in a MTB orienteering event afterwards. The really fun thing about CX though, for me, was the spectators cheering you on. I hadn't really appreciated how spectator-friendly CX is - it makes sense though, what with the slow speeds, endless potential for falling over, and the joy of seeing people in muddy misery...
    Specialized Tricross Sport 2009. Giant Yukon FX 3.

  2. #2
    Officially Foul Mouthed
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Raleigh
    My Bikes
    Ti IF PlanetX, etc.
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevage View Post
    I really hope there'll be more events though. 45 mins is pretty short though, when you're talking about a 4 hour round trip to get there. Luckily on this day I was also able to compete in a MTB orienteering event afterwards. The really fun thing about CX though, for me, was the spectators cheering you on. I hadn't really appreciated how spectator-friendly CX is - it makes sense though, what with the slow speeds, endless potential for falling over, and the joy of seeing people in muddy misery...
    had a bigger response earlier but BF ate it up and spit it out; agree about long drive short event and muddy misery; can't wait for cross season to start up top

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