Cyclo-cross season gets into full swing this weekend with UCI C2 events in three different regions across the United States. On the west coast, the new North American Cyclo-cross Trophy (NACT) kicks off in Washington State. The Midwest season opens with the KTR Michigan Double 'Cross, while the popular Mid-Atlantic series starts in Fogelsville, Pennsylvania with the Nittany Lion 'Cross.
Most of the North American 'cross stars will be in Redmond, Washington for the FSA Star Crossed and Rad Racing GP, the first events of the eight-race NACT - a new series which adds US$7,000 in series bonus prizes to four already lucrative weekends of racing. Current US champion Tim Johnson (Cyclo-crossworld.com/Cannondale) will face off against the 2006 champion, Ryan Trebon (Kona) and '05 champion Todd Wells (GT).
Wells is in superb form after representing the USA at the Beijing Olympic Games in mountain biking. He took fifth in the cross-country race at the the Canberra MTB World Cup last month. Current National Cross Country Champ Another mountain biker who could upset the 'cross specialists is Adam Craig (Giant), who took eighth in last weekend's MTB World Cup in Austria.
Former Star Crossed winners and Carl Decker (Giant) and Andy Jacques-Maynes (Specialized/KMC p/b California Giant Berry) have confirmed attendance along with Joachim Parbo who is two-time Danish National Cyclo-cross Champion.
Jonathan Page, the top-ranked American on the UCI circuit, will opt for the KTR Michigan Double-Cross, Michigan's only UCI Cyclo-cross event. Page won both days of racing at last year's event. The race takes place at the Springfield Oaks County Park in Davisburg, Michigan. After the race, Kinetic Systems will be hosting a post race party/Q & A session with Page and some of the other top professionals.
For those on the east coast, the Mid-Atlantic Cyclo-cross series will kick off in the region's cycling mecca, the Lehigh Valley, with the Nittany Lion 'Cross.
Mid-Atlantic 'cross expands
The already popular MAC series has expanded for 2008, adding races, UCI points and prize money as well as extending its geographic reach. With the inclusion of the Whitmore's Landscaping Super 'Cross Cup, the series now stretches from the tip of Long Island to the Virginia suburbs of Washington DC, a distance almost equal to the length of Belgium and The Netherlands combined.
Two other well-respected races have also joined the MAC this year and together will form the series' season-opening weekend on September 20-21. The UCI C2 Nittany Lion Cross will kick-off the season on Saturday, September 21 at Penn State University's Fogelsville Campus. The following day, the MAC circuit travels south to Baltimore's Charm City Cyclo-cross, a race that has frequently set new attendance records for Mid-Atlantic region.
Also rejoining the MAC after a two-year hiatus will be the event at Maryland's Fair Hill Fairgrounds, near the University of Delaware on November 1.
The new events have not come at the expense of the races that created the MAC legacy. The legendary cyclo-cross at Granogue once again joins the Wissahickon cyclo-cross for their traditional October UCI double header, while MAC's New Jersey weekend featuring Beacon cyclo-cross' "Ampitheater of Pain" and the HPCX occur in early November. The MAC season will end in December with its traditional curtain closer, the Capital 'Cross Classic in the Washington, DC area.
For more information, visit www.midatlanticCyclo-cross.com.
2008 MAC Cyclo-cross Series Schedule:
- 9/20: Nittany Lion Cyclo-cross, Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania (UCI C2)
- 9/21: Charm City Cyclo-cross, Baltimore, Maryland
- 10/18: Cyclo-cross at Granogue, Granogue Estate (Wilmington) Delaware (UCI C1)
- 10/19: Wissahickon Cyclo-cross, Ludwig's Corner (Philadelphia), Pennsylvania (UCI C2)
- 11/1: Fair Hill Cyclo-cross, Fair Hill Maryland (Newark Delaware)
- 11/8: Beacon Cross, Bridgeton, New Jersey
- 11/9: HPCX, Jamesburg, New Jersey (UCI C2)
- 11/22: Whitmore's Landscaping Super Cross Cup #1; Southampton "the Hamptons" New York Day (UCI C1)
- 11/23: Whitmore's Landscaping Super Cross Cup #2; Southampton "the Hamptons" New York Day (UCI C1)
- 12/7: Capital Cross Classic, Reston, Virginia (Washington DC) (UCI C2)
Green Mountain hosts Verge NECCS opener
The Catamount Outdoor Family Center, nestled in the beautiful Green Mountains of Vermont, will host the first two rounds of the Verge New England Championship Cyclo-cross Series, September 27 and 28.
The weekend will feature some of the nation's top cyclo-cross stars as well as two of the best courses New England has to offer. "We've been holding cyclo-cross races at Catamount for years now. It's a passion of ours, and we are honored to be a part of the Verge NECCS Series, arguably the top Cyclo-cross series in the country," says Eric Bowker. "We consistently hear each year is how beautiful the setting is and how challenging the courses are. We are really excited to bring the Catamount cross experience to a larger audience as part of the Verge NECCS Series."
The Green Mountain Cyclo-cross Weekend is a Cat. 2 UCI event with two days of UCI points on the line. The event will also serve as a springboard for the points race in all categories for the Verge NECCS series. After the Vermont Cyclo-cross Weekend, the NECCS moves onto Gloucester Grand Prix of Cross (Oct. 3 & 4), Cycle-Smart International (Nov. 1 & 2), Bay State Cyclo-cross (Nov. 29) and NBX Grand Prix (Dec. 6 & 7).
The Catamount Outdoor Center is located minutes from downtown Burlington and the Burlington International Airport. It is an easy drive from Boston, New York and Montreal. Free on site camping is available. For further information about the weekend and area lodging please visit www.catamountoutdoor.com.
Registration is now open at www.bikereg.com.
Kelly Benefits Strategies to sponsor Rockburn Cross
The sponsor of a major US men's professional team, Kelly Benefit Strategies (KBS), will lend its support to cyclo-cross this year by sponsoring the Rockburn 'Cross race in Maryland on November 2.
The BikeReg.com MABRAcross race, which is promoted by the Howard County Parks and Recreation Department in conjunction with Lateral Stress Velo, holds a unique place in American racing history. Recognizing the benefits to its local citizenry, both physical and fiscal, the Howard County Parks and Recreation Department last year became the first American governmental agency to officially take an active role in the organization and promotion of its local Cyclo-cross race.
For more information, visit www.rockburncross.com.
Ridley Factory Team for 2008-09
The Ridley Factory Team is entering its sixth year in the North American cyclo-cross scene. The squad, which focuses on developing young riders, has announced its final elite roster and sponsor lineup for the 2008-09 cyclo-cross season.
Based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the team will be composed of elite riders who will contest the major U.S. Cyclo-cross events - including the U.S. Gran Prix of Cyclo-cross, The North American Cyclo-cross Trophy, U.S. national cyclo-cross championships, and an expanded European campaign including the World Championships. Several members also plan to race in Europe in preparation for the 2009 UCI cyclo-cross World Championships in Hoogerheide, NL.
Riders: Bjorn Selander, Ali Goulet, David Hackworthy, Peter Hagerty, Nils Boberg, Rebecca Wellons, Linda Sone, Sara Morse, Corey Coogan, Margot Herman
Staff: Paul Schoening, team director, Dag Selander, team manager and coach
Sponsors: Ridley Bikes, SRAM, Sinclair Imports, Thule, Brightkeys Homes and Neighborhoods, Mavic, Under Armour, Dedicated Athlete (EP-NO), Mt. Borah Custom Cyclewear, 4ZA Components, Challenge Tires, Crank Brothers, Tifosi Sunglasses, Thomson, Giro Helmets, Pedro's, and Rotor Rings.
Upcoming UCI Cyclo-cross races
- September 20: N. American Trophy #1 FSA Star Crossed, Redmond (USA) C2 ME/WE
- September 20: KTR Michigan Double Cross - 1, Springfield Township, Michigan (USA) C2 ME/WE
- September 20: Nittany Lion Cross, Fogelsville, PA (USA) C2 ME/WE
- September 21: N. American Trophy #2 Rad Racing GP, Lakewood, Washington (USA) C2 ME/WE
- September 21: National Trophy Round 1, Abergavenny (GBr) C2 ME
- September 21: GP Neerpelt Wisseltrofee Eric Vanderaerden, Neerpelt (Bel) C2 ME/MU/MJ/WE
- September 21: Grand Prix Olomouc, Olomouc (Cze) C2 ME
- September 21: KTR Michigan Double Cross - 2, Springfield Township, Michigan (USA) C2 ME/WE
- September 21: Charm City Cyclocross, Maryland (USA) NE