Viewing 40 posts - 81 through 120 (of 147 total)
  • Cross is Coming! CX Season 2021-2022
  • Premier Icon 13thfloormonk
    Full Member

    Yikes, CX got real, have just entered Fife College, Camperdown (Scottish Champs) and Rouken Glen.

    After a great summer I had to take two or three weeks ‘off’ as in very few hours riding etc. Also need to devote a fair amount of time to strength and physio work at the moment. So with those excuses out the way I’ve got three weeks of maybe 5-6 hours a week to get the engine revving again before Fife College (usually a mud-fest so maybe I should keep my twice weekly run going!).

    Am thinking 1 turbo session mid-week, a ‘thrashing round a field’ CX session on a Friday, and a 3hr gravelly/CX ride on Sunday. Just wondering what best outdoor session might be, should I focus on the 6 x sprint-then-2 minute efforts to replicate starts, or just do multiple laps sprinting out of corners and trying to hold threshold for 10 minutes at a time?

    Frustratingly I still haven’t found ‘muddy-off-camber-gold’ for practising my skills on, almost tempted to take the CX bike down some local enduro trails but don’t fancy smashing roots with my 33mm tyres!

    Premier Icon shedbrewed
    Free Member

    Well done @geomickb Here’s a pic of me at my first cyclocross race

    Bourne woods cross

    I just overtook the rider in front of me at the end but we were last across the line.
    The next cyclocross outing was nearer home in the Welsh league at Hereford.

    Hereford cross

    Behold the gurn! 😄 Had the pleasure of making @IdleJon and @ferrals acquaintances over the years although I no longer bring a flask of chowder to races for apres threshold consumption (eh Jon 😉 ) Bringing it up to date I raced over in the western league a couple of weeks back down in Frome. Took a shoeing but came 16th in the end. Looking forward to either Welsh or western races hopefully. I love cyclocross. It’s very friendly, fun and gets under your skin.

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Full Member

    Anyone at Westmorland National Trophy this weekend? We’ll be on marshall / crossing point duty tomorrow. For the first time might actually not be standing in the rain all day….

    Premier Icon Garry_Lager
    Full Member

    I’m marshalling as well mick_r – Sunday though.

    See there’s a race in the calendar at Stonyhurst college – I do not know this seat of learning but a new venue is always good.

    Premier Icon vdubber67
    Free Member

    “Just wondering what best outdoor session might be, should I focus on the 6 x sprint-then-2 minute efforts to replicate starts, or just do multiple laps sprinting out of corners and trying to hold threshold for 10 minutes at a time?”

    Which one are you least good at? 😉

    Premier Icon BenjiM
    Full Member

    I’m not doing Westmorland as I royally cocked up with my bookings, somewhow managed to book Towneley Park twice instead of Westmorland, no idea how that happened. Anyway we’ll be training with the club
    on Moor Park tomorrow instead!

    Stonyhurst (large private school where some of Harry Potter was filmed) should be good, it’s just round the corner from me. Tim Lawson is organising and he’s pretty excited about the venue so it should be a welcome change. There’s another NWCCA race just round the corner from me for the Longridge Rotary Cross being organised by my club (Red Rose Olympic) although I’m not at liberty to say exactly where it is yet!

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Full Member

    Thanks for the tip-off, hadn’t seen Stonyhurst. My first thought was it would be Longridge Rotary organising but looks like it is Tim who is fairly local to there. Should be interesting.

    Don’t yet know where the Longridge one will be – I really enjoyed their Brock riding stables one.

    Edit: cross post with Benji. Give us a clue for Longridge 🙂

    Premier Icon 13thfloormonk
    Full Member

    Which one are you least good at?

    Haha. Not to worry, had fun scoping out a lap of the local football pitches taking in all gravel/sand traps, some slidey looking embankments and every square inch of off-camber embankment.

    Strava reckons 3 minutes a lap so will do 4 laps hard, rest, repeat etc.

    Unless I get spotted and laughed at by dog walkers or god forbid school kids, in which case I’ll go find somewhere less conspicuous to plod about 😂

    Premier Icon BenjiM
    Full Member

    @13thfloormonk – Dirty 30’s are as good as anything. Football pitch, Ride 30 secs hard, dismount & 30 secs run, remount & ride 30 secs easy, Repeat 10 times. BC have linked to some CX training on Training Peaks

    https://www.trainingpeaks.com/blog/top-cyclocross-workouts-for-fall

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Full Member

    Unless I get spotted and laughed at by dog walkers or god forbid school kids, in which case I’ll go find somewhere less conspicuous to plod about 😂

    I know the perfect park for cross interval training. Football pitch and gentle banks at one end to do repeated sprints, dismounts, etc, and steep banks up the other end to get used to that unholy feeling of trying to get up a slippery Mt Everest with 30lb of mud-clogged bike on your back.

    Unfortunately it’s the park in the area where I grew up. Kids used to congregate there to smoke and drink when I was young – I doubt it’s any better these days. I’m not sure how they’d react to my stumbling past in full Lycra, red faced and panting, bike on shoulder for no apparent reason. Repeat 2 minutes later for an hour or until the kids start shouting abusive words at me and throwing bottles…

    Maybe in the dark? Very late?

    Premier Icon ferrals
    Free Member

    Had the pleasure of making @IdleJon and @ferrals acquaintances over the years although I no longer bring a flask of chowder to races for apres threshold consumption (eh Jon 😉 )


    @shedbrewed
    – Pretty sure @IdleJon mentioned chowder when I first met you so it obviously made an impression! Welsh league races starting to show up now. Looks like I can only make a couple but looking forward to dragging myself round a race-course for the first time in 18months.

    Premier Icon 13thfloormonk
    Full Member

    Fun wee session on the football pitches tonight, lots of slippy off cambers and I even got some tunes from the Friday evening Fitba kids on the astroturf.

    Slid out quite violently on one embankment and the bike went down driveside, cue bent hanger AGAIN. I don’t know if Kinesis just make tgeir hangers from cheese or if it’s the super long cage GRX mech.

    Could I just fit a short cage 105 mech, smaller cassette and run a wee chain keeper on my narrow wide ring? Added bonus of getting the jockey wheels out of the way of the clart a wee bit…

    Premier Icon Garry_Lager
    Full Member

    Marshalling the trophy yesterday was good seeing the top riders in action – very fast course at Milnthorpe. You often don’t get a sense of the huge efforts being laid down in cross when it’s slow through the mud, but it was like watching a crit where I was standing yesterday.

    Nathan Smith (JM) and Amira Mellor (SW) both rode the field of their wheel in their respective races, really dominant displays. Senior mens race looked like a photo-finish – Joseph Blackmore got it (I think) over Toby Barnes with the two of them being out in front all race.

    Premier Icon steve_b77
    Free Member

    Well I’m actually going to race this weekend in the NWCCA, no self inflicted injuries, no kids parties just hopefully something a lot drier than the last time there was a ‘cross running race at Townley Park.

    But anyhow, Vittoria Wets have been installed and I’ve used a nano-ceramic coating cloth to give the bike a super slick finish so less crap will hopefully stick to it.

    It’s then the first round of the North Welsh the week after, yey!

    All 3 of the kids will be racing both too, with the middle and eldest looking for more top league points.

    Premier Icon steve_b77
    Free Member

    Townley Park in the NWCCA was actually pretty good fun, you could ride it all and there were no swamps, totally different to last time we were there for the North of England Champs!

    Son No.1 took the win in the U10 and was 3rd overall in the U12 too, with some pro cornering skills in action!

    Son No.2 took the win in the U8 as well.

    Son No.3 was 13th out of 18 in the U8 too, pretty good considering he only turned 5 at the end of August and is still on a 16″ wheeled single speed.

    I did OK in my first CX race for absolutely ages, 14th V40 and 36th overall

    Premier Icon Garry_Lager
    Full Member

    Well raced Steve and family. I was marshalling at top of the rooty climb – saw some good battles.

    The course looked great on the day. Memory of the N of E champs loomed large, had forgotten that the year before it had raced pretty well.

    Premier Icon steve_b77
    Free Member

    Well raced Steve and family. I was marshalling at top of the rooty climb – saw some good battles.

    So that was you, Hi!! There were a lot of people who raced the NoE and not especially local who marshalled yesterday, scared for life probably!!

    Premier Icon BenjiM
    Full Member

    Well raced Steve and family. I was marshalling at top of the rooty climb – saw some good battles.


    @garry_lager
    Sorry I didn’t realise it was you either, everyone is so different without a lid on, and when you’ve got your head down trying to keep up with the tiny bloke in front! Thanks for the encouragement. I think Paul hustled me for a few laps then dropped me for 10 seconds on the last lap! Chuffed with the position and the course was in better condition than previous years. A rgeat mix of everything. Thanks for marshalling 🙂

    Premier Icon ferrals
    Free Member

    I’ve used a nano-ceramic coating cloth to give the bike a super slick finish so less crap will hopefully stick to it

    How did that work out for you? I’m not bothering with a pit bike this year (not enoguh time to clean and maintain 1 bike, let alone 2!) so anything to minimise cloggage has got to be worth a go!

    Premier Icon drinfinity
    Free Member

    The conditions for Townley Park finally showed what a fantastic course it is, and was 100% rideable.

    Premier Icon 13thfloormonk
    Full Member

    Sorry I didn’t realise it was you either, everyone is so different without a lid on, and when you’ve got your head down trying to keep up with the tiny bloke in front!

    One of my buddies came to watch last time I raced in Dunfermline. I didn’t see him even when I went through the tapes, over his foot and back onto the course, proper blinkers on! 🙄

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Full Member

    @benjim – I think Pauls had to up his game just to keep up with Alice 🙂

    We didn’t enter Townley – combination of sniffles and ptsd from previous visits….

    Premier Icon steve_b77
    Free Member

    ferrals

    How did that work out for you? I’m not bothering with a pit bike this year (not enoguh time to clean and maintain 1 bike, let alone 2!) so anything to minimise cloggage has got to be worth a go!

    Well it helps that my new bike (Vitus Energie Evo) has epic levels of clearance, you can easily fit 650x47mm or 700x43mm tyres in there still with clearance, but even with the all the sticky mud & grass it didn’t clog at all, the true pleasure was in cleaning it afterwards, just hosed it down, sprayed on some cleaner and gave it a bit of slight sponge action and it was all shiny again and still feels like glass.

    I guess it’ll work better when it’s actually wet and not so tacky. One slight school boy error I made was to not degrease the drivetrain of the factory chain lube 0r whatever they come with, so the jockey wheels clogged a bit, all sorted now with a full degrease and wax lube applied.

    Premier Icon whytetrash
    Free Member

    First round of the North Wales league tomorrow… excited and nervous in equal measures … missed last season so first race in over 50s… First proper cross outing for bike too… can’t wait!

    Premier Icon Garry_Lager
    Full Member

    How did you go @whytetrash? Great course there today – very mtb-style singletrack through the trees then open field. Mega dry compared to when I last raced there, bike was pretty spotless by the end. Was fretting over an iffy tubeless rear tyre that deflated overnight, but just whacked 30psi in and it was basically fine.
    I had a good race with @steve_b77 – round together for most of it, nice to say Hello.

    Also got passed by an older guy quite deep into the race, like 45 mins – you don’t expect to get dropped there by a guy on your lap, but he distanced me easy. Must have taken him 30 mins to get warmed up.

    Premier Icon whytetrash
    Free Member

    @Garry_Lager got on great thanks, only downside was my blood sugars were useless as stressing too much! I’ve got a new vitus too and it’s safe to say the mud clearances weren’t tested yesterday! Funnily enough my back tyre pressure wasn’t holding either but got around ok and pleased with beating a few people I’m usually in the mix with 😉 looking forward to Erias Park… hopefully the dry conditions continue 🙏

    Premier Icon 13thfloormonk
    Full Member

    Also got passed by an older guy quite deep into the race, like 45 mins – you don’t expect to get dropped there by a guy on your lap, but he distanced me easy. Must have taken him 30 mins to get warmed up.

    This sounds like my typical race – good start, blow up, recover, finish strong(ish). Just don’t have the nerve to warm up as hard as I should I guess!

    First race in 3 years next weekend, Fife College. Probably one of my best races last time I did it but it’s gained a reputation for being a bit of a muddy running-fest since then…

    Premier Icon Duggan
    Free Member

    Morning All

    Just checking in as I am booked in for my first cross race on 6th November in Stadt Moers park (NWCCA).

    Been doing a few Vo2 max efforts on the turbo in preparation but after buying a 2nd hand Giant TCX for £500 and taking it out round some trails last weekend I sense that Traineroad will not have prepared me for actually slogging through the mud in real-life for 50mins?!

    Hoping to practice some dismounts/mounts next weekend but other than that think I’ll just have to show up and see what happens.

    Do you guys take on water when racing or just forego it for 50mins?

    Premier Icon LS
    Free Member

    Once it’s below 20 degrees I always managed without a drink. Only ever raced at Stadt Moers once but I don’t recall anywhere I’d have really wanted to take my hand off the bars to reach for a bottle in any case!

    Premier Icon Garry_Lager
    Full Member

    Showing up and seeing what happens is indeed the best way for your first race. No to the water and take any cages off the bike.

    Hard to say how Stadt will be, it used a different area of the park last time and it was very heavy (including a punishing run through a wooded section that had gotten too muddy to ride), but maybe if it’s dry it will go fast. If it’s raining that week though I’d expect a hard lap.

    Premier Icon Duggan
    Free Member

    Cheers both- I’ll pray for dry weather in that case!

    I’m a decent runner but have neglected this for a while probably to the point of it now being counter-intuitive so will try and get a few short runs in soon.

    Looking forward to it….in a way.

    Premier Icon steve_b77
    Free Member

    Duggan
    Free Member
    Morning All

    Just checking in as I am booked in for my first cross race on 6th November in Stadt Moers park (NWCCA).

    Yeah Stadt Moers is great for a run on the flat through mud and dog shit 😀

    It was a bloody good race at Alyn Park yesterday in the NWCA, first time the family and I have raced over that side of the border, I agree with Gary’s comments, it was certainly a fast almost Mid-Week Madness kind of course, I loved it, as did my boys.

    I put the little one in the fun race as there’s no point putting him in the 30min U12/U10/U8 combined race as he’s only (just) 5, he had a good time and a hot chocolate, so that’s all the matters.

    The eldest and middle ones went in the combined race in U10 and U8 respectively, it was their longest CX race ever with the NWCCA being around 15mins max for those age groups.

    The eldest absolutely smashed it, just missing out on the overall win (about 10 seconds) to a very strong & much bigger U12 girl (who he beat last weekend in the NWCCA on a much twistier course) she nailed him on the two long straights but he closed the gaps on the techy off camber hairpins and so it went on for 30mins, but he was 1st boy home out of all the categories by over half a lap in the end over the next rider, so he beat all the U12’s and 10’s as well as the 8’s.

    The middle one found it really tough with the length of the race and tech features and had a bit of a OTB and slide down the banking at one point, but he got back on and finished well, don’t know where he came as I couldn’t figure it out, but the results will be up soon, although he got he chequered flag, so you never know.

    I had what felt like a good race in the over 18 to infinity category with really consistent lap times and as Gary said above we had a decent battle, but he got the better of me in the end. Yeah that older guy breezed past with consummate ease, one seriously quick chap, called Jan or something like.

    So onwards to the pending double header of the NWCCA at Stadt Moers on the 6th and NWCA at Colwyn Bay on the 7th November.

    Premier Icon Duggan
    Free Member

    Sorry, one more question from me!

    I mainly ride road these days and have set the saddle height on my CX bike to the same height as I have on my road bike- but wondering if it’s beneficial to drop the saddle just a touch on the CX bike for mounting/dismounting etc?

    Or do you guys just run the saddle at the standard height?

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Full Member

    after several bone-hard courses so far this season, we’ve hit ‘cross weather in Wessex.
    Apparently our course has been shortened today as the guide lap time (before it cuts up) was 16 minutes.
    They’ve also had to send out an email regarding (possibly not) parking on the field

    Man, I HATE running

    Duggan – I have my saddle a bit lower. Not actually measured it but prob a couple of cm.

    Mostly so I can get room for a good cross-up over the scaffold bridges, obvz

    Premier Icon 13thfloormonk
    Full Member

    but wondering if it’s beneficial to drop the saddle just a touch on the CX bike for mounting/dismounting etc?

    Worth checking the stack height of your pedals, if you’re running SPDs or similar on your CX bike and road pedals on your road bike then your saddle should probably be 5-7mm lower on the CX bike anyway!

    Premier Icon Duggan
    Free Member

    Thanks all, lowered my saddle today and practised some mounts/dismounts in the rain on the local fields. Still rubbish but at least I won’t be totally doing it for the first time in the actual race.

    Fell off when the bike disappeared from under me after taking the mud bite tyres onto slimy wet cobbles on the way home 🤦‍♂️

    Premier Icon Garry_Lager
    Full Member

    Koppenbergcross was good yesterday – only caught the men’s race, wasn’t all that dynamic, but conditions very proper. Tv pictures couldn’t do justice to the Koppenberg – six times up it in the rain made for a savage parcours, riders in pieces at the finish.

    Premier Icon 13thfloormonk
    Full Member

    Anyone catch a beaming young Cameron Mason coming in 9th at the weekend? Linlithgow’s finest!

    Shouldn’t be a surprise, I’ve yet to find anywhere near as a good a selection of twisting muddy singletrack as I did between Kirkliston and Lithgae, an excellent training ground.

    Premier Icon LS
    Free Member

    only caught the men’s race

    Watch the women’s race! It was great.

    Premier Icon ferrals
    Free Member

    Women races have been fantastic- just watching Oversidge now

    Hopefully will have my first cx race in 18 months tomorrow!

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