Looking for an exciting twist to bicycling? With the popularity of the 2010 Cyclocross Series, the Minnesota Cycling Federation (MCF) has just announced this year's cyclocross series. If you have been doing a lot of road riding or mountain biking and want to take some of those skills to the cyclocross course here is your chance.
2011 Lazer Sport Cyclocross Super Series will include four premier events and offer a Series cash prize list of $1400 for the Cat 1/2 Men and Women.. Details can be found at: mcf.net/laser-sport-cx-super-series.
So you ask, what is Cyclecross? According to Wikipedia, cyclo-cross, CX, CCX, cyclo-X or 'cross', is a form of bicycle racing. Races typically take place in the autumn and winter. The Minnesota series season is normally September through December and consists of many laps of a short (2.5–3.5 km or 1.5–2 mile) course featuring pavement, wooded trails, grass, steep hills and obstacles requiring the rider to quickly dismount, carry the bike while navigating the obstruction and then remount. Races for senior categories are generally between 30 minutes to an hour long, with the distance varying depending on the ground conditions.
Worldwide, the sport is the strongest in the traditional road cycling countries such as Belgium, France and the Netherlands.
Cyclo-cross bicycles are similar to racing bicycles: lightweight, with narrow tires and drop handlebars. However, they also share characteristics with mountain bicycles in that they utilize knobby tread tires for traction, and cantilever style brakes for clearance needed due to muddy conditions. They have to be lightweight because competitors need to carry their bicycle to overcome barriers or slopes too steep to climb in the saddle. The sight of competitors struggling up a muddy slope with bicycles on their shoulders is the classic image of the sport, although sections not contusive to riding are generally a very small fraction of the race distance.
Compared with other forms of cycle racing, tactics are fairly straightforward, and the emphasis is on the rider's aerobic endurance and bike-handling skills. Drafting, where cyclists form a line with the lead cyclist pedaling harder while reducing the wind resistance for other riders, is of much less importance than in road racing where average speeds are much higher than in cyclo-cross.
For more information visit the MCF website at: http://www.mcf.net/. Then visit your local bike shop and get the real skinny from them.
Article Published: 08-22-2011