Explaining just what is cyclocross has always posed a headache for cross riders. "It’s like a cross-country running race on a bike" is a common explanation, although probably only true in the 1970's as things have moved on since then. In this article Elivar Featured Athlete John Shaw gives his perspective on cyclecross.
There is much debate as to where cyclocross started however one thing which is clear -Belgium is the spiritual home of this sport. Indeed by racing in Belgium over the years, lapping up the atmosphere, and the smell of beer, frites and embrocation, I earned the nick name “Johnny Belg”.
Cyclocross is an intense fast circuit on different types of terrain ranging from mud, dust and sand incorporating natural and man-made obstacles that take place in parks, woodland and urban areas. Lap times range from around 8-9 minutes, which is great for spectators and sponsor publicity. Courses are twisting with off-cambers and running sections, which get more difficult as the weather turns nasty around November/December time (a season runs from September until early February).
Equipment is crucial; circuits have pits in which riders can exchange bikes during muddy races or when mechanical issues occur; bikes are washed and prepped by family members or team mechanics all within the 8-minute lap - no mean feat and just as hard, if not harder than racing itself! Top and supported riders can have 4-5 bikes and numerous wheel-sets with different tyre treads for different conditions.
Overall, it’s a great growing sport offering races for all ages from Under 8's to Veteran in a safe environment with various leagues across the country; so get yourself along for a try or just to spectate and cheer on your local riders.
"Johnny Belg" AKA John Shaw is an Elivar Featured Athlete. You can read more about John and the other members of our Featured Athlete team here
Reckon you could take up cyclocross? Take a look at this video by Burk Webb
BigFeat Events, recognized for orchestrating captivating endurance events, stands out for its dynamic blend of cycling and running sportives. The recent "Beast to the East" cycling sportive, held on May 21st, is a sterling example of their commitment to crafting exhilarating experiences. A cornerstone of the success and popularity of these events has been the provision of Sustain Go! energy gels, generously sponsored by Elivar.
Previous running and events such as the "Bigwayround Trail Run" and "BigSea Trail Run" also benefited from the free distribution of Sustain Go! energy gels, much to the participants' delight. The energy boost and quicker recovery offered by these gels have consistently been instrumental in empowering athletes to perform their best.
Did you know that Nicotinamide Mononucleotide (NMN), the star ingredient in numerous anti-aging supplements, also moonlights in several foods you might already enjoy? It's true! NMN is a vital precursor to NAD+, a molecule crucial to many biological processes, like cell growth, DNA repair, and metabolism. But as we age, NAD+ levels take a hit, and bolstering them through NMN intake can be beneficial. Now the question arises, can we simply count on our daily meals for our NMN fix?