- Online pre-reg for all races except Melas CX is open over on BikeReg. Please remember to update your BikeReg ride profile with your USAC license number BEFORE registering for any events.
- Please welcome the newest CCC series sponsor, CMIT Solutions of Downtown Chicago is an IT consulting firm organized to support small & midsize businesses. We take care of all hassles associated with information technology. We offer a wide range of services to help effectively capitalize on available resources and maximize productivity. Beyond our local team, we have the reach of the leading national SMB IT outsourcing network with over 125 locations.
- Coach Ted Ramos has a weekly clinic coming up in the city where he works with athletes on improving cyclocross technique. More info and sign up here.
- And finally… For those of you planning on going to the national championships in Austin, TX this year, please note there are a few rule changes regarding registration for the elite categories. “There will also be new qualifications to enter the elite categories at the national cyclocross championships. Invites for the elite divisions will only be offered to any rider ranked in the top 90 in the Pro CX standings following the Deschutes Brewery Cup in Bend, Oregon, on December 6-7; or any rider with UCI points.”
- Looks like everyone had a great time again at the Relay CX on Sunday. Thanks again to everyone at xXx Racing-Athletico for getting the CX season started on the right foot. Results are online, but please note results from Relay CX will NOT be used for calculating CrossResult.com rankings. The next Chicagoland race is also hosted by xXx Racing and takes place at the new Caldwell Woods venue on Sunday 9/28/14.
- Just 5 spots left for Cracking the Code mini-camp with Pete Webber & Meredith Miller. Saturday, September 6th, presented by Spidermonkey Cycling and SRAM. Details are at petewebber.com/cracking-the-code/
- Just down the road in Rantoul the Heartland of Illinois CX (HICX) series kicks off with Patriot CX on Sunday 9/14/14.
- Online Pre-Reg for just about all events is opening on BikeReg next Tuesday 9/2/14 at 9am. So enjoy the last unofficial long weekend of summer and then rev up your Mosaic and Netscape browsers early Tuesday morning. This year all CCC events are utilizing BikeReg’s new category restriction feature. So if you attempt to register for a category you are not eligible for based on your BikeReg rider profile you’ll get a warning and have to write a note justifying why you are eligible for that category. Sooo… save yourself some time next week and update your BikeReg rider profile now with your USAC license number, CX category, team name, etc.
- Last call for Series Sponsors and Series Volunteers. Contact us ASAP at ChicagoCrossCup at gmail if you want to be involved.
- And finally… this holiday weekend if you are out and about spending your hard-earned cash dollars, please remember our great family of series sponsors who help make our little weekend parties happen. If you have a choice and the means, please give them your business!
Please post links to your pictures, videos, and race reports in the comments below.
– New this season the CCC website will feature a Coach’s Corner post every Wednesday from ROK Coaching with articles on training, racing, recovery, etc. Coach Rob Kelley has been in and around cyclocross for a long time and has developed a 16 week CX training plan here which starts this week. Take a look to get stronger and faster for the CCC.
- The xXx Racing-Athletico CX Relay race is coming up this Sunday in Jackson Park. Even if you can’t or don’t want to race, the venue is so close to the city you should swing down and check it out. Pre-reg has filled for Juniors and the Coed Open fields, but there are still a few spots open in the other categories. Please pre-reg on BikeReg.com for this event before it closes tomorrow (Wednesday) at 11:45pm CST. Good luck to all the teams racing, especially those named ‘Hurt Ponies’ and ‘Kevin/Tom’.
- Speaking of BikeReg, right after the CX Relay please make sure to update your BikeReg.com rider profile with, at the very least, your USAC license number (we use these to score the regular season CCC races) and all other relevant info. Even if you had a USAC license number in the past but are racing on a One Day license this year, keep your USAC license number in your profile. If your info is not correct in BikeReg we can’t score the series correctly. The reg pages for regular season CCC races will be online soon.
- Speaking of pre-registration and specifically entry fees for Junior races, all CCC races will charge entry fees for Junior races during the 2014 season. As much as we didn’t want to have to do this, last year we found a large number of Juniors (way more than any other category) pre-registered and then did not start (DNS) their races. In some cases 50% of Juniors DNS’d. With the Women Cat 4/Junior field selling out at many venues this led not only to some women not being able to pre-reg, but also large lines at the reg desk as waitlisted riders who showed up to race had to wait again to get in the race. However, since we do not want to penalize the Juniors who actually do show up to race, the CCC is instituting a reimbursement policy. If a Junior (racing in the Junior races) pre-reg’s for >= 4 races and actually shows up to race at least 75% of those races, at the end of the season they can request a reimbursement from the CCC for the full amount of the reg fees of the races they actually raced. We’ll have more details spelled out on the Series Rules and FAQs page soon.
- Also speaking of BikeReg, Half Acre Cycling is hosting a Women’s & Tran’s Beginner CX Clinic. If you have never raced or have one or two under your belt and want to brush up on your skills, join the Half Acre women’s cx squad for a fun morning in the park! Raffle prizes and snacks included!! Mmmm, snacks.
- Even more concerning BikeReg, as promised last week, here is more information about Beverly Bike/Vee Pak’s Saturday 10/11/14 schedule. The Beverly HILLS 5K trail run will begin at 10am on the same course as their cross race. You can register on RunReg here. At 12:00 the fun gets real with the half day cyclocross schedule. The course will be a slight variation of Sunday’s and will include a bunny hop competition! Think of a reverse limbo on a bike. Let’s see who can really fly! Registration for Saturday’s cross race will be open when Sunday’s CCC race goes live, sometime in the next few weeks.
- And finally… we hope everyone is enjoying the last few weeks of summer. Cross will be here soon enough so by all means practice your remounts, and turns, and starts, and heckles… but before you have to explain to both your non-cycling friends what cyclocross is every weekend and why you have so many bruises on your legs and are walking a little funny… please enjoy the summer weather before it is gone all too quickly.
- The CCC has many returning series sponsors for 2014 but also a few new friends we’d like to welcome to the family. More are on the way as well, but in the meantime, say hello to…
ABUS Mobile Secuirty – Whether you want to secure your bike against theft, protect your head in a fall with a bike helmet or simply transport a few items without damaging them. ABUS provides the right solution for all these tasks. From basic protection to high-tech locks to protect you against theft. Or from the first bike helmet for your child to helmets for professional cyclists. Or from the wide range of sportive, elegant and functional bike bags.
Christopher B. Burke Engineering, Ltd. (CBBEL) is a full-service consulting engineering and surveying firm specializing in civil, transportation/highway, municipal, traffic, construction, water resources, environmental, structural and mechanical engineering. CBBEL is committed to delivering consistently accurate, timely, and cost-effective solutions to a wide range of engineering and environmental challenges.
Lauri Novak Photography – Event & Fine Art photography capturing unique views and perspectives. Lauri sees the world in photographs and love that her photography helps others to see the world around them in a new and different way.
- Word in the dirt is Bevery Bike/VeePak is not only putting on their usual CX mayhem Sunday 10/12/14 at Dan Ryan Woods but are also opening up the course on Saturday 10/11/14 for a half day of non CCC-series racing. The reason for only a half day of cyclocross… because in the morning BB/VP is hosting a 5k trail run on the same course. So save the date and break out your running shoes too. More information will follow next week.
- Remember xXx Racing’s CX Relay is in 1.5 weeks and the team name competition is in full swing. The CoED category is already full, but we’re not sure if Bert Wellens and Sylvie Uyttendaele are really coming over from Antwerp to race with us.
- And finally… we want to try a little experiment this season. We know many of you have GPS computers on your bikes and just about everyone has an Internet connection, so let’s have some fun with Strava. Read through our instruction page and let’s see what happens.
– We are pleased to announce The Pony Shop will be the 2014 Chicago Cyclocross Cup Title Sponsor. After 5 great years Iron Cycles is handing the reigns to the gang at the Pony Shop. Shop owner and CX team manager Lou Kuhn is no stranger to the Chicago CX scene and has been a mainstay in the CCC series since its inception 11 years ago. The team has had multiple series overall winners and state CX champions over the years in nearly every category from masters to men to women from Cat 1 to Cat 4. Swing by one of the multiple Pony Shop tents this season and say hello to the guys and gals who call The Pony Shop home. From Lou, “The Pony Shop is honored to be a part of the CCC and help it continue to grow as one of the premier cyclocross series in the United States. The Pony Shop has been in Evanston since 1969 and is proud to be recognized as one of the many Chicago area shops that truly specialize in and love cyclocross. Our team has continued to grow for 2014 especially in the junior ranks, and we look forward to seeing these kids develop the same love we all have for cyclocross!”
- Saturday September 6th Spidermonkey Cycling and SRAM are bringing Pete Webber & Meredith Miller to Chicago for the latest installment of Cracking the Code, a CX mini camp and clinic. Leave your pledge pin at home and come learn CX from 2 of the best in the business. Register here.
- Also on 9/6/14, the Michigan CX season kicks off with the Alma Grand Prix of Cyclocross p/b Eclipse Cycling, which is the first race of the Tailwind series. As a special offer for Chicago racers the race promoter has again created a coupon on the USAC registration page good for $5 off your pre-registration ($25 pre-registration, $30 day-of). This coupon code expires on Sunday, August 31 at midnight EST and is limited to the first TWENTY uses. E-mail Brian (email@example.com) for the coupon! There are a handful of hotels in the area in Alma and Grand Rapids (80 minute drive…) and double up with a Kiss Cross race on Sunday(September 7) in downtown G.R. on your way back home. Early number pick up on Friday night is at the Alma Brewing Company in downtown Alma. Spy photos of the course (and a history of the venue) are available on the Facebook page. More information is available at www.AlmaGP.blogspot.com or www.Facebook.com/AlmaGrandPrixOfCyclocross. Any questions please e-mail Brian: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Speaking of xXx Racing-Athletico, if you hadn’t already noticed on the Schedule page, the Jackson Park CCC series race is moving venues this year to Caldwell Woods. Since xXx Racing had no other options for using other parts of Jackson Park they up and found a newer, bigger, better, location just North West of the city, still easily rideable to via Milwaukee or Elston Aves. However, even though we’re sure you all can’t wait to hit the dirt in the new location, xXx Racing urges all racers and teams to refrain from practicing at Caldwell Woods between now and race day. By avoiding Caldwell Woods until late September we are assisting the Cook County Forest Preserve District in their land use management plans. Thank you for your understanding.
- And finally… the organizers of Illinois Women Cyclists in collaboration with the Illinois Cycling Association and xXx-Racing are hosting the first ever Women’s Team Open House at Relay Cross! The group would like to offer a bridge for women navigating through the rush of finding a team that they can call family and Relay CX is the perfect setting! If your team would like to participate, please fill out this survey by Saturday August 8.
– So its almost August, road season is basically over, the Tour de France ending has all the roadies in a funk, and we’ve already fielded multiple emails from newbies asking lots of questions, so it makes sense we should have a big update. Look for more important updates over the coming weeks.
- First up, after 5 years of essentially the same race day schedule (except for the addition and jostling around of the SS category) the CCC is having its first major race day schedule change in a while to both accommodate the increases in rider performance and help everyone be more competitive at the local, regional, and national level. Due to everyone wanting to race and not enough daylight in December, there are no easy decisions when it comes to deciding on a CX race day schedule, but thankfully we have plenty of historical data to guide our choices. We looked at total rider counts and even the age and category breakdowns for every race in last year’s series to help us decide what is best for everyone… riders, race promoters, officials, parents. spectators, parks, pet greyhounds, you name it. So we put our heads together and spent literally weeks analyzing the data, thinking about where we’ve come from, where we’d like the series to go in the future, and after about 80 or 90 emails came up with the following race day schedule. We know we can’t please everyone all the time, but we managed to keep all categories from last year while adding some new features. The major changes are as follows:
- The race day will start 15 minutes earlier and end 25 minutes later.
- The Women 123 will have their own dedicated 45 minutes of course time immediately before the Cat 1/2/3 race.
- Added a short 15 minute course inspection time immediately before the Cat 3 race.
- Changed the Masters categories age minimums from 30+, 40+, and 50+ to 35+, 45+, and 55+. We reviewed the data from last year and found there were not as many 30-34 year olds as we assumed. See here.
- Masters races are now shortened to 40 minutes.
- Masters 35+ will start off the day by themselves (since older masters can always race down in age).
- Masters 45+ will lead the 2nd start wave of the day followed 2 minutes behind by the Masters 55+.
- Lengthened the Junior 15-18 race to 35 minutes while shortening the SS race to 35 minutes. Fitness and skill wise the Junior 15-18’s are closest to the majority of Single Speed racers so it made sense to combine these 2 categories.
- Keep the Women Cat 4 and Junior 9-14 together.
- Cat 3, Cat 1/2/3, Cat 4, and Cat 4/5 race lengths remain the same.
So after all of that the 2014 CCC race day schedule looks like this:
08:30 am Masters 35+ (40 minutes)
09:25 am Masters 45+ (40 minutes)
09:27 am Masters 55+ (40 minutes)
10:20 am Junior 15-18 (35 minutes)
10:22 am Single Speed (35 minutes)
11:10 am Women Cat 4 (30 minutes)
11:12 am Junior 9-14 (30 minutes)
11:40 am Course Inspection (15 minutes)
11:55 am Cat 3 (45 minutes)
12:55 pm Women Cat 1/2/3 (45 minutes)
01:55 pm Cat 1/2/3 (60 minutes)
03:10 pm Cat 4 (30 minutes)
03:55 pm Cat 4/5 (30 minutes)
We’re putting this schedule out now so no one is surprised at the first race of the series at the end of September… so tell your teammates, tell your parents, tell your team managers, tell your shop owners, and be on time for your category’s race. Payouts are also changing and will be updated next week.
- And finally… the xXx Racing-Athletico Jackson Park TagTeam Two Person Relay Cyclocross Race is scheduled for Sunday August 24th, less than 4 weeks away. This is a great way to get ready for the CX season and always brings a few more crossers into the mix. So secure your teammates soon and get ready to high-five!