Team Meow keeps it cutty with their Bandit Cross series in the Denver area. Check out more events at Team Meow’s Facebook.
Photos and words by Cooper Ray
On December 5th, 2015, the world’s toughest track bike race took place in the mountains surrounding a place which was once Tenochtitlán, the capital of the great Aztec empire, known today as Mexico City where more than 21 million people reside.
The race: Cielos Infernales. The only information provided to racers was checkpoint locations, and a finish line. This is not your average bicycle race – you must contend with open traffic, self-navigation, and 10,500 feet of elevation gain (also descending) on track bicycles. There were three peaks to be ascended with winding navigation through favelas between the Sierra Madre mountains. Throughout the race, it was either up, or down, with the descending nearly as difficult as the climbing. With impossibly steep and narrow streets, stray dogs, and uneasy looks from locals, this was a game or survival as much as a race. There is no giving up, you have to finish. This is the first track bike race of it’s kind, and will set the standard for this type of event and hopefully inspire more like it around the globe.
Bienvenidos a Distrito Federal y Cielos Infernales.
Follow Cooper on Instagram.
“Cielos Infernales was being billed as the world’s toughest track bike race. The first of it’s kind- long, brutal, fast with miles of climbing into the clouds- on one gear in live traffic. 75 miles and 3 mountain ascents completely unsupported. It’s the first time an all-fixed gear alleycat has required the fitness and endurance of a stage race, and the street handling of a messenger. Plus racing in open streets in Mexico City is always a risk. Traffic is wild, roads are rough, and there’s always a chance of a stray pothole, dog, donkey or car catching you out. ”
Speedvagen’s Family Racing has some heavy hitters on its roster, including the forever smiling Laura Winberry. Check out this video profiling her as she takes on racing in the Pacific Northwest.
A Weekend at SoCal Cross
Photos and words by Julio Boostamante
Julio Boostamante, You know… the local Socal photo dude from Compton that shows up at the Wolfpack Hustle races, local Fixie Crits and snaps a bazzilion pics of all the action. Yeah, well now you can also find me Fredding it up at the Socal Cross Races. Why? Well, because I decided it was a good idea to suffer for 40 mins on a bike.
I’m way more comfortable and less sweaty behind the lens but you know what? Something about racing cross and finishing is well, rewarding. The beauty of it is that anyone can do it. Yes, even me as an out of shape photographer. You should try it sometime! Lots of suffering will be had at these events on any giving weekend but also, lots of good times with awesome people can be had. For me it doesn’t get any better than that! Did I mention you get to drink beer in the park? Yeah, just don’t let the Park Ranger find out.
If you’re crazy enough, you can also do the course fixed in the annual Tracklocross race like some of the local fixed gear homies did. Sounds insane I know but I promise you, it’s more fun than scary. Well for us to watch anyway.
Check out the photos to see what all the weekend fuss was about and keep the heckling loud and the beers cold at the next Cross event!
Follow Julio on Instagram.
Ritchey Design: Three Peaks. What is it?
Brian Vernor: It’s called a cyclocross race, but really it’s a long distance adventure through the English countryside. The course carries you up and over three significant peaks, all of which force you off the bike for an unreasonable amount of running, hiking and shouldering. I grew up in Santa Cruz, California and at the time it was (and still is) one of the hubs for cyclocross in the United States. I started racing there in high school and I heard whispers about “Three Peaks” from some of the elder statesmen of the sport who’d gone to Europe to race and explore the less conventional rides and races out there. Three Peaks was always discussed with great reverence. And fear.
If you’re like me, you want to know more about Yorkshire’s Three Peaks “cross race.” Earlier this year, Brian Vernor with the help of Ritchey was able to compete in this infamous event, resulting in a video, photos and a complete story to come. For now, Brian’s got an interview up on the Ritchey Blog, so head over and check it out!
CX Hairs comes at us on a Monday with a video from Reston, Virgina’s Capital Cross Classic race.
I can’t get enough of this race and will absolutely have to make it back to next year’s event in Portland!
The Single Speed Cyclocross World Championships (SSCXWC) was created in the vision of a giant cultural rubber band snapping in the face of the serious UCI cross racing scene. Trainers, embrocation and skinsuits are nowhere to be found at SSCXWC. The barrier height rule was tossed to the birds and replaced with barriers hosting flames intended to burn your shins. For those that have witnessed the spectacle you know of the past Tequilla Shortcuts, Foam Pit, Thunderdome, Junk Yard Jumps and endless Feats of Strength.
The ninth edition of the dumbest race known to Neanderthals just came down on the polite town of Victoria, BC. Racers follow no rules and live on their own regard, dressed to the nines and leaving sobriety at the door. The only rule is each winner must get a tattoo adorning the SSCXWC theme. This year Mical Dyck and Adam Craig took home the honors with world champion tattoos and golden speedos.
The Portland Collective brought in a dowry of joints as a sacrificial lamb to the riders in hopes to bring it back to PDX for the ten year anniversary. At the finish line racers were rewarded with doobies and the crowd burst into a cloud of smoke. Apparently everyone got so stoned they forgot what was going on and Portland won the bid. Lesson learned is bribes always work.
We sent our partners in crime out to try and stay sober enough to document the debauchery. Here’s a collection of images from eyes of Dylan VanWeelden and Ryan Richardson. Follow more shenanigans on Instagram @dylanvanweelden and @singletrack_media_works.
It’s a race, not a party. It’s a party, not a race.