Yesterday I participated in my first cyclocross race. It was held at Virginia Key in Miami. Cyclocross takes place off road and on, hence it’s a cross between mountain biking and road racing. It also involves some off-the-bike skills like jumping over obstacles and running up steep, muddy banks while carrying your bike. Doesn’t that sound Fun!?!
I was hesitant to do the race because I only had a few days to get accustomed to my loaner CX bike. Also dismounting and jumping over barriers at race pace seemed rather daunting, but I decided to give it a go….after all it’s not very often that Miami hosts a cx race. I ended up having a great time and I hope to do several more races this year! And I strongly encourage more Rose Bandits to give it a try. It’s a great workout and, in my opinion, less intimidating than road racing. The atmosphere of the race seemed more relaxed and the dynamics are entirely different than racing on the road. If you get dropped from the group in a crit or rr – your race is pretty much over – but in CX racing you can be a lap or more behind the leaders and the spectators will not know. This is because majority of the field breaks apart within the first lap and everyone races at their own pace. It’s like doing an off-road time trial with some super fun obstacles. I also found it to be a bit safer than road racing since you’re averaging 12 or so mph. So if you have an itching in your feet to start racing, but you’re a little intimidated of riding 30+ mph in a crit, then you should definitely try cyclocross!
Check out this website for more info regarding cyclocross races in Florida: www.floridacx.com . I will begin training Tues. and Sat. mornings with a group at Crandon Park and Virginia Key. Contact me (email@example.com) for more info on when/where we practice. Cyclocross is a great change of pace from road biking and it’s an excellent way to get stronger during the off season. It would be super fantastic to have more women at the races!
Tags: bike races, cyclocross, Florida Cyclocross, miami cycling, Rose Bandit, Virginia Key Bike Park, women's cycling