The London CX League Team Champions ships took place on Sunday 7th February 2016. Kingston Wheelers entered three teams with the vets leading the way in 15th, the seniors finishing 21st and our composite coming in 35th.
Chris Montague reports on the race
Nine starters, nine finishers, two commissaires and a pit crew: we had great turnout, all in proper kit.
Conditions were as expected with plenty of mud and with a slightly different course to last year. It was all ride-able but 'matured' into the day. It was a general mix of single track, little hills, straights, off-camber bits and one bomb-hole.
The main field had over 200 starters. Sign on was a good half hour of lining-up so a lot of us didn't get the chance to ride the course before the race, relying on Spraggy to go over the technical bits. Griding was different this year in that rather than teams being grided, team members were grided over 4 distinct starting lines. That is, in your team your top/fastest rider started at starting line #1, with your not-so fast riders starting through to starting line #4. Not a bad idea if everyone does the right thing and it seemed to work.
The results are up but we didn't race for results did we? Just for the fun and the mud!
That’s a wrap for CX season 2015/2016. Overall we probably had over a dozen club members participating across Central, London and Wessex Leagues over the season. For anyone remotely interested in cyclo-cross, you should really give it a go. There is no prerequisite apart from having a CX bike but even then for most league races you can use a MTB. If you’re thinking about racing then I would put in your diary the Summer CX Series in August or the novice races for the Central League season (starts September). However, if you have decent fitness you can start in the main field with no trouble at all and probably do well. The key though is to start early in the season while the course is relatively dry and work into it such that by the time you get to the muddy end of the season you have a couple of races under your belt.
So if you’re interested here are some websites:
The season in pictures (thanks to Nathan Wilson)
The Team Championships brought the 2015/2016 cyclocross season to a close, in the thick mud and slurry we've come to expect from a British winter. Though, this season has been an unusually warm one, early season races taking on the guise of grass criteriums.
Conditions stayed pleasant right the way through til November when the mercury dropped and clouds brought the mud.
We had a good turnout of racers all season, spanning across most categories and leagues in south-east England, Kingston Wheelers placing our colours in the ground.
The Central, London and Wessex leagues are home to many great courses, all run by local clubs and businesses. The varying terrain meant that no two races are the same, so it was always a surprise to turn up and find what obstacles lay around the corner.
Features range from the claggy mounds …
… to the rutted woodlands …
… to the steep & slippy descents.
Unlike other disciplines, Cyclocross always gives the opportunity to get into the thick of it.
Racing against others at your level, where fitness and skill level the playing field.
And the only way to get dropped is to break your bike and walk back to the car.
Here’s to the 2016 / 2017 season!