A while back I watched a video of cyclocross on the internet and decided I had to try it out. Saturday morning we loaded up the whole family, stopped by Bob Albright’s bike shop and headed down to Swope Park so I could do just that. I’ve never felt so out of place in my life. Cyclist and nice cyclocross bikes every place I looked. Cyclocross bikes are like road bikes with skinny mud tires on them. These guys were skinny and I am fat. These guys wore spandex and I wore a soccer jersey with baggy shorts. These guys had cyclocross bikes and I had a mountain bike. There was a cycling culture and I felt like Kanye West at the CMT Awards.
The race is a 2 mile loop that we went around 4 times. It is made up of asphalt, gravel road, dirt single track, a little mud, hills, logs you have to go over, lots of back and forth around sharp turns and two foot tall barriers that require riders to jump off their bikes and carry them over before getting on the bike again. There are various categories and races that take place, I was in the beginner group, Cat 4. (click on link for more photos and the rest of the story)
On the way to registration (photo above) as I was observing everything I told Beckham that Daddy was going to get his butt kicked today. He every so sweetly responded, “no you are not going to get your butt kicked dad. I will yell really loud and they will all stop and you will not get your butt kicked (pause) and then they will all go again.”
Just before the race began I felt a nervous sickness wondering why I ever wanted to do such a stupid thing to begin with. Some things man is simply not supposed to do and wearing spandex is right up there with flying and and using the word “sprinkles”. The horn sounded and off we all went. I started near the back so I was able to pass a few people which felt great as we made our way around various corners. This was amazing, I was gonna kick a few people’s butt. Then fitness kicked in and most of those people I passed were now passing me. Many people wrecked and I tried to not to run over one poor guy grimacing in the woods after flipping his bike somehow (he was ok, I asked). It was so hard to breath trying to keep up some sort of pace, yet it was amazingly fun. Really cyclocross is everything a bike race should be. I can’t wait to do it again, next time I’m gonna talk Tony and Travis into doing this as well.
After the race I rode my bike over to Laura and the kids where I did my trademarked lay on ground like you are going to die to rest move. Beckham ran over and stuck the gatorade bottle in my mouth like a baby bottle. Later when walking back to the car he told me he was so tired that he was going to lay on the ground when we got there. He did. So I stuck a gatorade bottle in his mouth.
Here are a few more photos from the day.
Update, I was 34th out of 38. Time to start training.