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Summer Cross: Why not race cyclocross all year round!

Cyclocross racers are nothing if not passionate about their winter mud-plugging sport. Whilst most of our ‘cross riding customers will be planning to start their season in September, those in and around Yorkshire have a race series that started this week!

The Yorkshire CCA Summer series, which has been going strong for many years, kicked off in Huddersfield on Wednesday 27th April. So now you have no excuse not to race ‘cross (almost) all year round.

It’s never too early to get ready for ‘cross season!

Here's Planet X-sponsored rider Dave Haygarth’s Guide to Summer Cyclocross: here

Dave raced the opening round of the Yorkshire Summer Series last night. Here are his reflections...

Hail and pace

There was something deeply ironic about the word 'summer' as the MASSIVE bunch of riders took to the start line yesterday evening. It will come as no surprise to you that the weather has been unseasonally nasty - all over the country - for the last few days. But those big black clouds were... well... bigger and blacker than we could even have imagined. Somehow, despite nasty hail and snow all day long at home, and some incredible white-out storms within a few miles, the race itself stayed dry. Driving back over the summit of the M62 was a bit scary and I was glad to be in mate Carl's 4x4 - just as a bit of psychological back up. 

 

I did say in a 2014 article (above) that summer cross races can be "wet, claggy, muddy, cold, and windy." but I didn't mention blizzards. This is nuts. The start line is, as usual the coldest place on earth, and I'm just dying to try and generate some heat once we start. But even throughout the race, my fingers, despite a medium thickness full finger glove, never actually warm up. I actually rode a good race on the lovely Viner Super Prestige and despite the gap between the end of the 'proper' cross season on 21st January and the start of the 'summer' one, my skills survived the race. That's normally the worry after a break - but all came good and I think I got inside the top ten. But it's the cold at the forefront of everyone's mind. During last winter's whole season, I think there were two races as cold as this, and none colder. Just amazing. 


In other news and something at the forefront of people's minds whilst I'm over in Yorkshire, the Tour de Yorkshire's kicking off tomorrow, and this weather looks set (according to forecasts) to take effect for that race too.  We focus on the TV coverage of stoic and heroic cyclists, but I'll be sparing a thought for the fans who choose to hang about for ages in some freezing road side to watch.  It's grim up north, eh?. 


 

For Yorkshire Summer Cross race details: Click here

For other summer ‘cross races check British Cycling’s calendar.

28 April 2016

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