Category Archives: cyclocross
Purging bikes isn’t fun, unless you can sell it to a friend, or in this case, a co-worker. One of the higher ups at Mellow Johnny’s recently decided to part with his Rock Lobster singlespeed cross. It was practically new and just so happened to fit Jonathan like a glove. Best of all, Jonathan finally found a place for all those turquoise Chris King bits he had been saving.
Singlespeed builds are ridiculously beautiful, especially when they have a color combination like walnut brown and turquoise. Relying on the ever-so-stoppy, Paul Mini Motos and Pacenti SL23 hoops with Tubeless WTB Cross Boss tires, this thing will be good to go next season…
But as we all know, cross bikes are much more diverse than that. We’ll be seeing more of this beauty in the coming months, I’m sure of it.
Rather than jumble up the guide to surviving cyclocross nationals up with event fliers, I’ll just make an event and party flier dump, beginning with the Crash Nationals event flier. Pay close attention to the details. We’re expecting a large crowd, so don’t miss out on the fun. All-City is giving a Macho Disc away and we’ll be DJ’ing the after party at Yellow Jacket.
Got an event you’re throwing? Share it with me and I’ll add to this post… Do so ASAP!
Racin’ Bikes in a Junkyard: the Bilenky Junkyard Cross Race
Photos and interview by Chris Lee
For many of the cyclocross racers in the Northeast, December means its finally time to hang up the ‘cross bike and start putting down base miles for road season. Another group however gets geared up for what they consider the most fun on a bike they’ll have all year. Yes, its time for the infamous Bilenky Junkyard Cross race.
It’s not every year that the USA Cycling Cyclocross Nationals land in your backyard. Over the past few days, the crews here in Austin have been mapping out the course, staking turns and building lots of the additions to the otherwise rough and rocky limestone outcroppings.
There are a number of places where you’ll be able to gain momentum, until it ends abruptly with sharp turns and muddy corners. The course is soaking wet today, but it’s not supposed to rain anymore until Saturday. Right now, it looks like it’ll be a blast, especially going down the main hill before the uphill barriers.
I swung by today after a ride and shot a few quick photos, after pre-riding most of the course (which isn’t allowed apparently). I’m damn impressed with how well things are shaping up.
Check out some preview photos in the Gallery.
It’s a common belief that riding some sections in a cross race is faster than running. In the newest video from CX Hairs, we examine if it’s true, for this one course detail anyway.
You know the saying “good things come to those who wait?”, well, the original saying, which was shortened for public consumption was written by a cyclocross racer in Belgium back in the 1850’s. His text, which was later transcribed on his tombstone said “good things come to those who wait all ‘cross season…”
Here we are, at the end of the 2014 season, with all but two races left for the year, States and Nationals. Most of us are at our peak fitness, or maybe we’re already packing on the winter weight, but for whatever reason, suddenly I feel a lot stronger. Those parts that have been waiting for months suddenly have a home and my bike rack in the house, with that empty hook, finally has a mate. This is the peaceful twin, to the black metal steed, my Geekhouse Mudville.
When this project was first announced, I was honored to have Luis and Geoff from Mudfoot think of me to be involved. I can’t help but think Aaron Stinner may have had something to do with it as well. After a few email correspondences, Aaron agreed to ditch the “production geo” and go full custom. He asked which geometry I preferred and to be honest, I was completely satisfied with my Geekhouse, so we stuck to that for the most part, save for a half a º steeper head tube.
This one’s hot off the DFL race in SF last weekend, from Andrew Low himself:
“We’re taking pre- orders now at my website. Production will begin right after the end of the season – after the frame has been adequately tested, when I am satisfied there are no issues with it, and when all my current standing orders are fulfilled (about 4 months from now).
The geometry is a fairly standard with 70mm bb drop, 71.5º head tube, 74º seat tube. We will be offering 1-1/2″ tapered head tube, disk brake, and single speed as options.
In case anybody is wondering why we’re testing it so late in the season it’s because of my broken wrist this summer, I was out of commission for 3 months. Also, we plan to build her up with fancier parts, but this is the best we could do on short notice.”
Pre-order a MKi Frame for $1,550 at Low Bicycles now!
For this week’s SVENNESS, we hop the English Channel from Belgium over to Milton Keynes in Buckinghamshire, England for the third round of the UCI World Cup…
I should preface this gallery by saying, as an isolated selection of images, it’s ok. But after I post all the content I got from this weekend, it’ll be more complete. That includes, reviews, portraits and yeah, my new cross bike. For now, however, it does encapsulate our race conditions and a rather fun way to end the season.
We’ve had a fairly wet fall here in Austin, resulting in some grueling races with a lot of mud. The problem is, we don’t get normal mud here, since the base is limestone. Instead, we get iron-rich clay and clay, well, clay doesn’t like bikes. At all. Unless it’s in the drying process, when suddenly it becomes rails of brown pow.
Saturday’s race was more of a Tough Mudder course than a race course, with the day starting off as a 2 mile track, with around 1.25 miles of running. It sucked. Sucked the energy from your legs, sucked your derailleur off your hanger and sucked all the space it could find within your stays, cranks and fork. The officials shortened the course, resulting in faster times, but still, a lot of running. I’ve never had to shoulder a bike in a race before. Usually, everything was ridable, for some of us, anyway.
When Sunday came around and I could barely walk, I wasn’t looking forward to the course.
Alas, there’s that magical moment where mud transforms to fast lines of singletrack through the woods and mudpits become tacky enough to form a rut. Those are the moments where cross racing takes hold of your skills and sharpens them like a battle ax. Sunday was amazing and fast!
After doing my thing, there was talk of a chili eat-off between one of the older teams in town and the newer teams. Yacht Club vs Super Awesome. I had my money on the later, since Yacht Club prides themselves on their fine dining and boyish physiques. Boy was I wrong…
I have a penchant for purple bikes and even though ‘cross is almost done for the year, it doesn’t mean we can’t keep oogling bikes like the latest from Adam Sklar.
This frame is built from OX platinum with a 44mm headtube and 142×12 spacing. This offers a stiff rear end, but an ovalized top tube bent stays offer compliance when needed. Not a lot of cross bikes have internal top tube cable routing, but this one totes it with pride.
To round it out, Adam’s client is running Ultegra 6800 with Shimano mechanicals and a Stans/DT wheelset.
I love it when bikes are built with practicality in mind. See more at Sklar’s Flickr.