Blood, Sweat, & Dust – Kings CX Weekend

The Beginning of cross season and the OVCX series hits hard: Two days of back-to-back racing at Kingswood Golf Course in Mason, Ohio. With a more difficult course and significantly more entrants than the prior year, everyone was dancing to the tune of competition.

The Course: It was DRY. I think I am still coughing up dust three days later. The course include several long, sweeping off-camber turns that you could hardly pedal through. The standard set of barriers. One wheel-eating sandpit. And their self-acclaimed sha-zand, a confusing sand pit that looped through a densely wooded section. The course was run in a different direction each day.

There was so much going on this weekend that it is difficult to write about. Here are the weekend Stats:

Three Top Fives

Two Podiums

Eleven Races

Two newbies

8 dust covered grins

Not bad for round one of the OVCX series. Can’t wait for Louisville!

labor ride

fyi: Glenn did show

glenn, getting ready for cx?!

Here are some pics from the ride. We had 8 solid riders, 90 miles, 37 unleashed dogs (love the country dogs!), 1 wild turkey, 6+ roosters, lots of shade, minimal traffic and loads of fun. We even raced a small group of horses the length of their pasture. We left at 7:47 and total car to car time was 5:47 hr which includes the 20 min stop at the lake, a flat and a few wrong turns.

Tracy

labor day ride...

CX Crazee

I can’t stop thinking about cyclocross season! Devou Park Practice last night was great. We did Hot Laps (2-3-2). Everyone on the team seems to be getting really used to their new rigs, and we are already seeing improvement across the board. Our version of the practice course worked out really well, so we are probably going to stick with it until more trail building ensues.

Only one person who was not on Team Hungry showed up. Matt Bell, the brain behind the permanent park came and laid down some serious hurt on the course. Ouch! Where was everyone else? Be a pioneer!

After our first “official” practice at Devou last night, Alex and I decided to take an easy day and do some cx skills practice. We took our bikes to Mitchell Memorial Forest. This place has a mountain bike trail (a little under 4 miles) that is great for tuning up your cx skills. A cx bike can navigate through this trail without much trouble, and with long sweeping turns of varying degree, riding the trail seems to help dial in your handling abilities. The terrain of the trail gives the potential of a few pinch flats, but those can be easily avoided by tubees or by just picking the right line.

After working on our turning technique, we practiced our barrier skills. It seems like the only ay to get better at these is through repitition. Yes, it does get boring after jumping over the same set of barriers a few times, but it pays off in the long run. After all, honing in your mounts and dismounts can put you seconds above your competition.

Devou Cyclocross

Most of us have heard about it, some of us have worked on it,  and a few of us have actually ridden it. DEVOU PARK PERMANENT CYCLOCROSS PARK!

After the second trail building day, which takes place on the last Saturday of every month, the course is really taking shape. Park crews have mowed sections and volunteers have cleared out what is called the “northern trail.” The course still needs a lot of work to be finished, but is certainly in ride-able condition. Since the course isn’t done, we have come up with a preliminary route that incorporates the complete trail as much as possible.

Current course (our version) features: Lots of slightly uphill of cambers and fast-sweeping 180 degree turns. This courses shape and terrain make it both technically challenging and physically exhausting. Some of the sections are slightly rutted, especially the northern trail, which we road as a “neutral” section. One uphill run-up, one barrier section and several flat sections for the big ring enthusiasts.

We are so freaking excited about this course. One because it is less than three miles from downtown Cincinnati, and two because it is so awesome to ride! We are now hosting a weekly practice, every Thursday at 6:30pm. Dirt will hurt.