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my first cyclo-cross race from behind the clipboard(3 posts)

my first cyclo-cross race from behind the clipboardJS Haiku Shop
Dec 7, 2003 12:40 PM
i'm hoping cyclochip, j2, specialtater, tnsquared, memphis cutter, and anyone else there will post ride reports for this one. your input will immediately direct the series and courses.

i'll do a more detailed post tomorrow or mid-week, once i get all this stuff organized and stored, the series website updated, and some sleep.

let's just say that having the guys over for a long night of drinking and bullsh1tting the night before setting up a 12-barrier 'cross course nearly singlehanded is not the smartest plan of action. i was saved in the end, though, by some great friends, and everything went well.

yesterday was the memphis marathon, and i'm told a few of the A guys either ran it, or did a regional race or cycling event. whatever the case, we had 3 (T-H-R-E-E) A-racers today. there were 3 ss racers, 3 women, and the rest non-A i don't remember, but B/C/SS/Women totaled 17. this is a medium to small attendance for our scene. but there are many things to consider, and those don't have any place on this board.

I was out there shortly after 5 AM setting up the course by the headlights of my honda element. it was UGLY. i thought i had a fatal hangover. it rained last week and was cold this morning, so the frost covered the mud pits on the back section. i used nearly 3,000 feet of tape and 50 plastic fenceposts to mark the course, plus 8-10 traffic cones, surveyor's flags, and some other stuff. it was all very euro and chic ("sheek", thankya).

all words words words, really, but let's cut to the chase (cut the cheez?) and say that i was at breakdown point (not the course--"breakdown" refers to my psyche), and my buds pulled it together, and kept me strong. i was deeply, deeply touched by the work done today by everyone involved. it's funny that i started this thing in the dark sitting on frosted ground in muddy jeans with a 4-pound hammer and 48 pieces of rebar, at the point of tears, and ended it in tears for opposite reasons. words don't suffice.

if you are considering stepping up and hosting a race or series for your local cycling community, i hope that you can take from this post the following sentiment, and take it to heart:

it's worth it. every damned bit.

and i'd do it again tomorrow morning. for 20 racers.

-J
You got it righttriangleforge
Dec 7, 2003 2:56 PM
I learned another important race promoter lesson this weekend: that it's almost as hard to NOT run a race as it is to run one.

Snow this weekend cancelled the race we'd geared up for; once you've got everything moving in the right direction, it's not a simple matter to just hit the off switch! As much work as we put in, it's nice to know we'll get the payoff of running the postponed race two weeks from now.

Still, this experience (and the race we did without a hitch three weeks ago, MY first as a race director) re-affirms what you said. It is, emphatically, worth the effort. And a huge part of what makes it worthwhile is how much you have to rely on your friends and teammates to pull it off -- and how incredibly they come through!

Cheers!
A sincere thanksAlex-in-Evanston
Dec 8, 2003 11:59 AM
We lost our only Chicago area cross series last year. It was a huge downer. You have the thanks of everybody who rides a bike for stepping up and taking the responsibility required to do this.

Gracias,

Alejandro