– Big thanks to the South Chicago Wheelmen, the Hilton Indian Lakes Resort, and everyone who dared enter the Octagon Hexagon(s) to make this past Saturday’s race a success. Indian Lakes was our largest race ever with 454 starters! We guess the beautiful weather helped, but we’re just glad someone got a picture of this guy pouring a Fat Tire on his head! Not only that, but many of you chipped in to raise $126.30 for World Bicycle Relief… just shy of the $134 needed for one bike.

– Speaking of WBR… it was just announced Monday (11/16/09) morning that ALL donations to WBR between now and the end of the year will be matched $ for $! Buy 1 bike – have 2 delivered! This is no reason to stop giving however… so let’s see how much more we can raise for people who don’t even have bikes!

– Next up is Woodstock. Its fitting for a CX race that race promoter Dr. James Kearns’ web address is http://www.painfree101.com/. The course will be very similar to last year, but I’m sure the Dr. will have a few surprises in store for everyone. Additionally, we doubt we’ll get many takers, but since this is the last race before the most American of holidays (Thanksgiving), anyone dressed up like a Pilgrim, a Turkey, or a Big Bowl of Stuffing will get a special call-up.

– If you haven’t noticed… the days are getting shorter. We at the CCC appreciate any help we can get, so if you’re hanging out after the 4B’s finish up, please lend a hand in tearing down the course. Rounding up course materials in the dark is no fun at all. Thanks!

– Speaking of… if you’re not already traveling out of state for Thanksgiving then you may want to. Our friends to the West in Iowa will be hosting their (6th?) Annual Jingle Cross UCI weekend. Three days in a row of CX! Good luck to all of you CCC’ers who are foregoing the turkey, stuffing, and cranberry to race CX!

– On SAFETY… If you are riding your bike at a CCC event… you MUST WEAR YOUR HELMET AT ALL TIMES. There are NO exceptions to this rule. It is a USAC rule, a CCC rule, and just plain common sense. The overwhelming majority of you have been great about this, but a few knuckleheads keep forgetting. Please, for your own safety, wear your helmet. If you need one, just ask, we’re sure someone will let you borrow theirs.

– The RESPECT… We heard that a few of you took matters into your own hands this past weekend and were changing the course before the 4B’s race around the mud section. This is not acceptable. Only the officials have the right to change the course after it has been set at the beginning of the day. Every racer, no matter how far off the front or off the back has the right to a clearly defined course just like everyone else. Yes, this is CX, and its supposed to be hard, but that doesn’t mean anyone has the right to make anyone else’s race harder than it already is. Please be respectful of your fellow racers and leave the course the way the promoters set it.

– On SAFETY & RESPECT… Please remember we do call ups for a reason… when lining up on the start line you must only be 10 riders wide. We don’t know how many times we have to tell you all this. If we see riders trying to cram themselves in between the riders in front of them we will relegate you to the back of the field. We know you all want a chance at being at the front of race from the beginning, be we cannot comprise the safety of all of the the other riders… or the hard earned placings they’ve worked for.

– On Hand-ups. Okay, let’s see if we can remember them all… at Indian Lakes we saw cupcakes, bacon, Twinkies, Twizzlers, Bacon wrapped Twizzler stuffed Twinkies, Fat Tire Amber Ale, something in a canteen, dollars, golf balls, and even the increasing popular Recession Hand-Up (otherwise known as a Hi-Five!). Awesome. Keep up the great work. We can’t wait to see what theme you all put together for Woodstock… will it be Thanksgiving or hippies? Just remember… no glass or sharp metal.

Photo: Michael Young

– Finally, Harry Lam, a USA Cycling & UCI Official, was injured during a CX event on 11/7/09 in Northampton, Massachusetts.  Harry was accidentally struck by a cyclist sprinting at the conclusion of an event.  Harry was knocked to the ground, suffered a broken nose and internal head injuries.  Harry was put in a medically induced coma for about 24 hours to control bleeding on the brain. Fortunately Harry did NOT require surgery and was awaken about 24 hours later. He has already begun working with a physical therapist and continues to make improvements daily.

Harry was released from the hospital on 11/11/09 in Massachusetts and will be taken to Virginia for a lengthy recovery.  Harry is from Salt Lake City, Utah. However, he has extended family in Virginia with whom he will be staying with.  Harry’s recovery precludes his returning home for some time, so he faces an additional hardship of being separated from his family during this recovery. There are a lot of difficulties ahead for Harry and his family between medical expenses, separation of the family, no work, etc. Please continue to hold Harry and his family in your thoughts and prayers for a full recovery.

Like many of you who find yourselves in these types of situations, we at the CCC want to help. The New England Bicycle Racing Association (NEBRA) and other officials around the country have worked to set up a fund on BikeReg.com to assist Harry and his family with medical expenses. If you can, please donate here to get Harry back up, home, and working again!