I may be using the term “Race” a bit strongly here as this was my first time actually trying Cyclo Cross, but I did participate in a race so we will go with that for now. Stuart has been doing cross all fall/winter and now that my A race has passed I finally was open to trying. I picked up a used bike online that is better than my other bikes for this type of riding, a Surly Straggler. It really isn’t an ideal cross bike because it is steel and heavy but it can handle the course so that was all I needed!
I have watched Stuart ride a couple of these races and so far they courses have all overwhelmed me! But I signed up for the beginner lap anyway and thought I should at least try that. I was so pleased to see what a generally easy course it was! There was nothing too terribly hard or technical and the course was really wide. It is always my concern that I will be in the way of those who are really racing.
I had so much fun on my beginner lap I signed up for the Womens C race. I got lapped by the leaders but I had so much fun!!! I am so glad I gave it a try. I will just list a few lesson learned and then give you a bunch of pictures. Here is the Garmin Data if you want to see it.
- Just try it! You may be surprised at how much you like it. I was!
- Practice! There was one obstacle that I had trouble with. So between races I would go over to that obstacle and just keep trying it! I also practiced getting off my bike and getting back on.
- Have fun! You really can’t help but do this; the atmosphere is so relaxed! Do the silly stuff if you can.
- Everybody was a beginner once and the other racers know that. Everyone who passed/lapped me was very polite. You have to start somewhere.
- Just keep pedaling!!!!
Thanks to Stuart for all the great pictures! The ones without the glasses are the beginner lap; with the glasses was the race.