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  1. #1
    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    cyclo-cross wannabes

    i've made my peace with you guys. if you want to believe that you're doing cyclo-cross on your morning commutes, that's fine. i'll leave the forum to you.
    when walking, just walk. when sitting, just sit. when riding, just ride. above all, don't wobble.

    The Irregular Cycling Club of Montreal
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    Ride the Road Daily Commute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by velocipedio
    i've made my peace with you guys. if you want to believe that you're doing cyclo-cross on your morning commutes, that's fine. . . .
    Wow. It shows you did not even read what I wrote. I wrote that cyclo-cross was riding a dropped handlebar bicycle off road. That does not include most commuting (although it does cover my rides across snow and ice). I showed about 10,000 examples of people who saw the need to add the word "race" when describing a cyclo-cross race. Even the UCI (which you cite) distinguishes between "cyclo-cross" and "cyclo-cross racing." You never responded to a single argument.

    As I said in the other thread, an attitude like yours could turn people off of cyclo-cross. But, fortunately, you are isolated in your views. I am very impressed that no other cross racers have supported your view. That says something very good about the sport.



    Quote Originally Posted by velocipedio
    . . . i'll leave the forum to you.
    Translation: "When challenged, I hide."
    Last edited by Daily Commute; 02-27-05 at 09:03 AM.

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    Senior Member MrEWorm's Avatar
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    How many angels on cyclo-cross bikes can balance on the head of a pin?

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    Quote Originally Posted by velocipedio
    i've made my peace with you guys. if you want to believe that you're doing cyclo-cross on your morning commutes, that's fine. i'll leave the forum to you.
    ThanX!

  5. #5
    Perineal Pressurized dobber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by velocipedio
    i've made my peace with you guys. if you want to believe that you're doing cyclo-cross on your morning commutes, that's fine. i'll leave the forum to you.

    When's your first race?
    Last edited by dobber; 02-27-05 at 09:25 AM.

  6. #6
    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    my problem is not with cyclo-cross bikes being used out of competition -- my race bike is my off-season road training bike. my problem is that some of you guys don't seem to understand the sport. rising a cyclo-cross bike equals cyclo-cross about as much as wearing surgical scrubs makes making a salad surgery -- even if you use a scalpel to cut up the tomatoes.

    personally, i'm happy that you guys are all riding cyclo-cross bikes. i agree that they're great all-around bikes, and if you came out to races i think you'd have a lot of fun. but, in response to some of your posts:

    As I said above, my definition of "cyclo-cross" is riding a bicycle with dropped handlebars off road (and off paved path).
    the problems here are:

    1. many people race cyclo-cross on flat-bar bikes and mountain bikes. thomas frischknecht raced two seasons [i can't remember if it was the 1997 and 1998 wc] with a flat bar. by your definition, this is not cyclo-cross.

    2. cyclo-cross courses include some off-road sections. very often, they are almost entirely off-road, but the sport is frequently done on courses that involve a great deal of pavement. one race i did at williston vermont had no paved sections, while races at bromont and mirabel, quebec had rather lengthy paved sections. in the latter, if you count the gravel road section, was probably more than 50% road.

    3. many people, including me, ride cyclo-cross bikes on the road from time to time, or even frequently.

    while i agree that you can probably call a road-type bike with dropped handlebars which has been optimized for off road riding a "cyclo-cross bike" [and even that is not absolute, since i remember johnny tomac racing a dropped-handlebar mountain bike in the late-1980s], riding such a bike does not necessarily make what you're doing cyclo-cross, even if you're off-road.

    for example, there are a number of techniques and practices that are pretty much unique to the sport: mounting and dismounting at speed to navigate onstacles; running; riding at extremely high intensity -- usually at or above anaerobic threshold for an hour; riding in the fall and winter. these are essential part of the sport. the running part, as i've said, is where the word "cross" comes from. it isn'yt just riding a certain kind of bike, it is riding a bike in a certain kind of way.

    i can see where the miusunderstanding comes from, but you really have to see beyond the technology to see the sport.

    I suppose this definition was coined by some pompous cyclo-cross racer.
    no. this is the description in the forum heading of the forum you are now reading. i suspect it was written by joe gardner who i don't believe has ever done cyclo-cross.

    Velocipedio started a new thread to cast yet another empty insult on this subject.
    i'm sorry you feel insulted. my point was not that there is any shame in rising a cyclo-cross bike in a non-cyclo-cross context, or that there is any shame in wahting to be a cylo-crosser. only that, if you're going to call what you do cyclo-cross, then it should be cyclo-cross.

    i frequently ride quickly around the block, but i don't call that a criterium. and i often train alone on a measured courrse and check my times, but i don't call that time-trialling. and i don't see any shame in not being a time-trialist, since i am clearly not one.

    As I said in the other thread, an attitude like yours could turn people off of cyclo-cross.
    i'm sorry you misunderstand. the truth is that i really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really want all of you guys to come out and race. i think it's a great sport, and i have devoted a great deal of time in getting people to come out for it. the picture below is of the team [really more of a club] that i organized last season to get people into te sport. only four people in the picture had ever raced before and none [aside from me -- orange bandana] had ever raced more than one season. the kids were our "development team." all of them are already pumped for next season.

    we organized clinics and training rides, with portable barriers, and practice races twice a week starting in september so people could acquire the necessary skills. this year, we plan to run a midweek series in a local park so people who have never raced before can take up the sport without feeling intimidated by the "race scene."

    as i've said. cyclo-cross really isn;t about the bike. i've seen people at races on mountain bikes, road bikes, hybrids, bmxes and even unicycles. it's not about the handlebars. it's not about shaving your legs, oiling up and wearing lycra -- one of my teammates raced in cotton sweat pants and a windbreaker.

    but it's also not about trekking through the singletrack on your own on a cyclo-cross bike or riding a cyclo-cross bike to work, no matter what the terrain and weather conditions. just as throwing a baseball around without a bat and a diamond is "catch," hockey with four guys and beer bottles set up for goalposts is "shinny," rugby with seven players a side is "sevens," and a one-on-one game with a basketball and one net is "one-on-one," riding a cyclo-cross bike without riding in a cyclo-cross race -- whether it's a pick-up race of sanctioned -- is something other than cyclo-cross.

    cyclo-cross is a sport with a unique history, culture and rules, and i hope you try it someday. it's a blast. it's a sport that i've devoted a great deal of time and effort to, both as a participant and an organizer. i simply don't want the word "cyclo-cross" to mean nothing, and without the definition of the rules and practices, it really does mean nothing: it's just guys riding bikes with or without dropped handlebars, with or without knowbby tires, on or off the road.
    when walking, just walk. when sitting, just sit. when riding, just ride. above all, don't wobble.

    The Irregular Cycling Club of Montreal
    Cycling irregularly since 2002

  7. #7
    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dobber
    When's your first race?
    october, 2001. i finished two laps down and had a blast.
    when walking, just walk. when sitting, just sit. when riding, just ride. above all, don't wobble.

    The Irregular Cycling Club of Montreal
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Red Baron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by velocipedio
    i've made my peace with you guys. if you want to believe that you're doing cyclo-cross on your morning commutes, that's fine. i'll leave the forum to you.
    Wow, I don't even know you - but have an intersest in Cyclocross, bought a jake the snake, does that make me a cyclocross rider? or is it a worthless endevor & should I sell it?

    Seriously, guess something 'got your goat' so to speak. I rarely read this forum, but I think most folks are intimidated by posts like yours.

    Reminds me of a 'how' 'Do' 'Be' philosophy I often talk about to younger folks.

    Lots of folks want to be a 'enter desire here - Cyclocross rider fits'

    so they attempt to learn 'how' by associated with same, reading, learning, etc.

    Then comes a 'do' state: Do the things a cyclocross rider does. Or mimic as much as possible the same.
    Buy a cyclocross bike, read cyclocross forums, post in same, buy cyclocross clothes, but yet not a true 'cyclocross' rider. BTW- this is were marketing targets the public in retail sales through advertisement.

    FINALLY IF WE ARE LUCKY, OR TALENTED, OR WORK-HARD we get to the 'Be' state. Even then some don't make it. To be in the 'Be' state, takes quite a while unless you have talent, but one can get there if they try hard. If not they often get frustrated, made fun of, or find other pursuits. to be in a 'BE' state requires total dedication.

    many that DO think they are in the BE state, when in reality they are not.



    Soooo- saying that, and not knowing you, I do seem to remember seeing you posts on other forums. Are you in a 'Be' state posting here or in the other forums. Or are you being hypocritical? Or are you just plain POed about something, someone?

    Nothing personal meant, just an observation.
    **Fate is a fickle thing, and in the end the true measure of a person is not fate itself, but how they master it**

  9. #9
    Ride the Road Daily Commute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by velocipedio
    my problem is not with cyclo-cross bikes being used out of competition -- my race bike is my off-season road training bike. my problem is that some of you guys don't seem to understand the sport. rising a cyclo-cross bike equals cyclo-cross about as much as wearing surgical scrubs makes making a salad surgery -- even if you use a scalpel to cut up the tomatoes.
    I understand what cyclocross racing is about, but the term "cyclo-cross" means more than just "cyclo-cross" racing. You never explained why your narrow definition can hold even though your sport's sanctioning body (UCI) doesn't use the term the way you do. They still say "cyclo-cross race." So do nearly 10,000 other people in my google search. Why? Because the word "cyclo-cross" does not necessarily mean race.

    You may want the term to mean only racing, but that boat has sailed.


    for example, there are a number of techniques and practices that are pretty much unique to the sport: mounting and dismounting at speed to navigate onstacles; running; riding at extremely high intensity
    You haven't seen parts of my winter commute.


    -- usually at or above anaerobic threshold for an hour
    Ditto.


    this is the description in the forum heading of the forum you are now reading. i suspect it was written by joe gardner who i don't believe has ever done cyclo-cross.
    Everything he said was true about the sport of cyclocross, but, as I explained above, even the UCI uses the term more broadly.


    i'm sorry you misunderstand. the truth is that i really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really want all of you guys to come out and race.
    Then you are doing an extremely poor job of promoting the sport. But, as far as I can tell, you are alone in your views, so I won't smear the entire sport with your attitude.


    but it's also not about trekking through the singletrack on your own on a cyclo-cross bike or riding a cyclo-cross bike to work, no matter what the terrain and weather conditions.
    That's not what it's about for you, but it is what it's about for others.

  10. #10
    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    the problem with how you understand cyclo-cross, daily commute, is that your defintion, "riding a bicycle with dropped handlebars off road (and off paved path)" both excludes a whole lot of what is cyclo-cross -- including thomas frischkneckt's 1997 and 1998 seasons -- while inclusing a whole lot of what is not cyclo-cross -- including long, leisurely, rides along a hiking path on a touring bike in midsummer.

    it's not just what "cyclo-cross" means to me. if you define any word any way you please, then those words have no meaning and not use. i understand the concept of intertextuality of meaning, but in terms of the cultural conventions of communication, that only works to a point. i could say "i worship moloch, but i'm a christian because i worship in a church," or "i am playing rugby because i am throwing hoops with a rugby ball," but in both of those cases, the definitions of "christian" [one who worships in a church] and "rugby" [a game with a rugby ball] are broadened to absurdity. they become useless for communication because they have no distinct meaning or clear correspondence.

    if you went to belgium or france -- where the sport of cyclo-cross began -- and said "i do cyclo-cross," you would be asked about the races you've done, and not about your bike.

    and, let me ask you: how can i promote cyclo-cross [which is something that i do] if "cyclo-cross" means nothing and everything at the same time? this is not a rhetorical question.
    when walking, just walk. when sitting, just sit. when riding, just ride. above all, don't wobble.

    The Irregular Cycling Club of Montreal
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  11. #11
    Senior Member Surferbruce's Avatar
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    the only way to achieve the "BE" state is to believe it's true.
    i think nowadays riding a cyclocross bike offroad is something other than mountain biking considering the difference in equipment. the fact that non racers call themselves cyclocrossers takes nothing away from serious racers.
    don't live in fear.

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    Senior Member Iffacus's Avatar
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    To me Cyclo-Cross is racing

    riding a cyclo-cross bike off-road as either part of a commute or a leisure ride, is roughstuff riding. In the UK we have had this as a part of cycling long before mountain bikes came into existance http://www.rsf.org.uk/

    This is my take on this topic
    Prerace, I use a misplaced faith in my innate ability, with a dose of needless optimism. For recovery, I use self-delusional techniques.

  13. #13
    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    whatever you believe, it's probably a good idea to read up a bit about the history of the sport. links below.

    http://www.uci.ch/english/cyclo_cross/what_is.htm

    http://www.britishcycling.org.uk/dis...ss_intro.shtml

    http://www.londoncyclesport.com/news_2003/x_what.html

    http://www.aabikes.com/club_pages/club_info.html

    http://bicycling.about.com/library/weekly/aa022300a.htm

    whether or not you race, you should know something about the sport.
    when walking, just walk. when sitting, just sit. when riding, just ride. above all, don't wobble.

    The Irregular Cycling Club of Montreal
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  14. #14
    Science Fanboy KrisPistofferson's Avatar
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    Does this mean Dr. Dre isn't a doctor? I agree with what you're saying, but I think you're freaking out about it too much. Plus some of these guys just figured out how to get your goat and are being obtuse on purpose. Delusions are all some people have.
    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher Hitchens
    What can be asserted without proof can be dismissed without proof.

  15. #15
    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    i'm not freaking out, and i'm sorry if that's the tone coming out. i enjoy taking my brain out for some exercise. it makes me a better writer and, sadly, i am writing today.
    when walking, just walk. when sitting, just sit. when riding, just ride. above all, don't wobble.

    The Irregular Cycling Club of Montreal
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  16. #16
    Tiocfáidh ár Lá jfmckenna's Avatar
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    For the sake of argument in symantics I have always considered the term cyclocross to refer to the sport itself too; that is, where you set up a course with obsticles and race it according to the rules. No the term cyclocross does not necessarily mean 'race' but it does mean hoping off the bike and jumping fences, run ups etc... Every year I train with the local college team where we set up a course and practice drills, that is considered cyclocross but not a race. But when I ride that same bike home after practice I am not cyclocrossing, I'm just riding home.

    But whatever.

    btw please don't think I am a prick because I am just offering my understanding of the terminology and quite frankly don't care

    incedentelly I love cyclocross it really is my favourite kind of bike racing. It is gaining tremendously in popularity and I hope those of you with cross bikes will attend a local race some time. People of all skill levels race and the atmosphere is very friendly. I hope that does'nt change with it's popularity. Next year the races I do will all be UCI rules which requires a section of pavement and at least one dismount for obsticles and a potential run up. I say potential because for me they are run ups but some of the pros ride right up those things, some hop the barriers!

  17. #17
    Retired Member ultra-g's Avatar
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    I Guess We Are Poseurs unless we have had racing experience?

    I bought my Poprad because it is a nice bike. I don't plan on racing it. I'm posting on the cyclocross section because I'm sure you guys who post here know 1,000,000x more about cyclocross bikes than I do.

    I am so ashamed!
    I Changed My User Name!

  18. #18
    Ride the Road Daily Commute's Avatar
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    Velocipedio, you still haven't explained how you can be right when the UCI doesn't even use the term the same way you do. If I can find 10,000 uses of the phrase "cyclo-cross race," that must mean that many, many people (including UCI) believe that the word "race" adds something to the meaning of the word "cyclo-cross."

    You would like to narrow the definition, which is a fair argument. But you certainly can't honestly argue that using the term "cyclo-cross" to mean more than racing is objectively wrong.

  19. #19
    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    this is from the uci website:

    What is Cyclo-Cross?


    The classic image of cyclo-cross is the high speed dismount-remount manoeuvre. This takes place when the bike is to be carried on the shoulder up a particularly steep or muddy incline, or else when an obstacle on the course cannot be ridden.

    In terms of technique, cyclo-cross is one of the most difficult forms of cycle racing. The bicycle resembles the road machine, with its dropped handlebars, 700C size wheels and relatively narrow tyres. Yet the conditions for these two disciplines could hardly be more different. For a start cyclo-cross is a winter-time sport. Woodland trails, open meadows, and short, steep hills are the main features of a cyclo-cross course. Normally the circuit is in the region of 2.5-3km, and the race duration around one hour.

    The sport had its first world championship in Paris in 1950. In the early years, cyclo-cross was thought of only as an accessory to road racing. The intense work of the one-hour race and the use of narrow tyres on muddy hills made a good combination to hone both fitness and handling skills.

    Gradually cyclo-cross specialists emerged, and the sport became dominated by riders who were little known in road racing. Apart from some notable exceptions - led by Adri Van der Poel - this remains the case today. Yet cyclo-cross stars do feature prominently at the top level of mountain bike racing - a sport far closer related to cyclo-cross than to road.

    Where cyclo-cross and mountain bike racing differ in ideology is in-race technical support. In mountain biking, the rider must be fully self-sufficient to carry out in-race repair work should his machine malfunction. In contrast, a cyclo-cross racer is allowed to use up to three bicycles in a race. Since this is a winter sport and the tracks are often very muddy, a clean cyclo-cross bike can weigh in excess of 10kg less than a muddy one!

    The handicaps of excess weight and mud clogging have resulted in a highly organised pit stop system. Trained teams of mechanics work quickly throughout the race to ensure that the rider may have a clean, oiled bike once each lap. Normally two machines are in the use/cleaning cycle, while a third is kept in reserve in case of mechanical failure.

    In 1998, trade teams have been replaced by national teams in the UCI Cyclo-Cross World Cup. This move is intended to increase interest in the sport from the mainstream audience.
    pay close attention to: "In terms of technique, cyclo-cross is one of the most difficult forms of cycle racing."

    But you certainly can't honestly argue that using the term "cyclo-cross" to mean more than racing is objectively wrong.
    really? because you subjectively define it any way you wish?

    from wikipedia:

    Cyclo-cross is a form of bicycle racing. Races take place off-road, typically in the autumn and winter, and consists of many laps of a short (2–3 km) course featuring wooded trails, grass, steep hills, and obstacles requiring the rider to dismount, jump the barrier and remount. The sport is administered by the Union Cycliste Internationale; it began in the 1940s and the first world championship was held in Paris in 1950.
    you will notice the insistence on "racing," and the absence of any reference to commuting.
    Last edited by velocipedio; 02-27-05 at 03:57 PM.
    when walking, just walk. when sitting, just sit. when riding, just ride. above all, don't wobble.

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    Perineal Pressurized dobber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by velocipedio
    this is from the uci website:
    Ya know what you remind me of. Those pedantic little clowns that sit around arguing about stereos and how old vinyl has more warmth. Give it a rest.

    You wanna pedal around thinking you're somehow more the "cyclo-crosser" and we're a poseurs, so be it. It's gotta be lonely riding by yourself.

  21. #21
    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    dobber... you don't need to read the thread if you don't want to. me? i'm having fun. i'm competitive that way. some people are competitive, and they enjoy the challenge of competition, whether it's on the bike, or with words. live with it.

    for the record, i have not, and hove no desire to attack anyone personally. moreover, i don't believe that someone who rides a cyclo-cross bike but does not race is a poseur. my point is that, it's only cyclo-cross if it's a race. otherwise it's "riding a cyclo-cross bike" or "training for cyclo-cross."

    ask yourself this [and i'm serious, try to think about it before replying]: what makes what you do cyclo-cross?

    is it that you are rising off-road? riding off-road is mountain biking. is it that you are riding a cyclo-cross bike? the sport of cyclo-cross does not require a cyclo-cross bike [see reference to thomas frischknecht above].

    as i've said, i would dearly love you guys to come out and race. i think you'd enjoy it.
    when walking, just walk. when sitting, just sit. when riding, just ride. above all, don't wobble.

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  22. #22
    Retired Member ultra-g's Avatar
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    I hear this is the topic on Monday's Crossfire, they have some constitutional law experts who are going to argue whether the term cyclocross refers generally to riding a cyclocross bike or specifically to cyclocross racing. I can't wait to hear Ann Coulter's take on this.
    I Changed My User Name!

  23. #23
    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    don't you ever just take a stand on something? i usually do it on sundays, when i'm working.

    this really is meant to be fun, and if anyone's not finding it fun, i'm sorry. but at least i'm having fun.
    when walking, just walk. when sitting, just sit. when riding, just ride. above all, don't wobble.

    The Irregular Cycling Club of Montreal
    Cycling irregularly since 2002

  24. #24
    Retired Member ultra-g's Avatar
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    I'm having fun! But... it's all fun and games until someone loses an eye.
    I Changed My User Name!

  25. #25
    Senior Member Surferbruce's Avatar
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    this thread got me inspired to put my cross bike thru the paces today. left my house in the Marina Del Rey and did a 35 mile loop, 10 miles on pavement up to the Santa Monica mountains where i hopped on the camp josepho fireroad to Mulholland, over and down the Westridge fireroad for about 15 miles of dirt(lots of little rock slides and trees down from the recent rain) then back down for another 10 miles on pavement home.
    saw lots of riders out today. one favorite moment was at the top of almafi road i passed roadies turning around at the end of the pavement and mtn bikers unloading their trucks at the same spot. i just kept on going
    anyway, thanks for the inspiration. it was an awesome day.

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