- Hi everyone, normally we’d hope you were outside enjoying your bicycles, but today and tomorrow… please, please, please stay inside. You can’t ride this weekend if your body and bike are frozen. Stay warm and safe!
- Just a reminder that this weekend are the 2019 UCI Cyclo-Cross World Championships in Bogense Denmark. We’re sure a few places around town will be hosting viewing parties. Leave comments below if you know where or with whom. Enjoy the racing and almost the end to the CX season. Believe it or not there are still seven more UCI races after the World Champs.
- And finally… George Armstrong has completed his portraits from Montrose and emailed riders individually. If you haven’t received your images or just want to see what the portraits and podiums look like, check them out here in this Google Drive folder. If you still can’t find your image but remember George taking them, email him at [email protected].
- Congrats to everyone who traveled to Louisville, KY last week and over the weekend to race at the USA Cycling National Championships. The conditions were absolutely brutal with lots of mud and rain, but that didn’t stop several CCC’ers from having some fun and racking up some great results in the process. Special congratulations to Emiliano Arteaga for hitting the podium in 3rd in the Boys Junior 11-12 year old race on Saturday. Full results are here and we’re anticipating photos over on SnowyMountain.
- Well, that’s it for cyclocross racing here in the states. However there’s plenty of racing through the end of January in Europe though. We’ll mostly be shutting down the updates here on the site, but we’ll be sure to use Twitter for any exciting updates we think you may be interested in.
- We wish everyone a merry holiday season and happy new year. Please travel and ride safe and we’ll see you again in 2019!
- And finally… and speaking of things you may be interested in and 2019… we’ll be hosting the end of season awards party at the Rapha Chicago Clubhouse on Saturday 1/12/2019 at 6pm. No tickets, no entry fee, no sit down dinner, no staging grid. Just some good times hanging out with CX minded people, without bikes. Come hang out with us, Kenny, and the overall series winners to celebrate another great Chicago Cyclocross Cup season. We’ll have food, dranks, cowbells, overall series winner prizes, and door prizes. Please be sure to RSVP so we know how many tacos and beers to bring.
- Looks like Afterglow was a another success with lots of fun racing and it all going to several great causes. Also, the Slurpee podium “medals” were fantastic. Not that they really matter, but results are here. Thanks to everyone who raced and came out to support Blackstone Bikes and West Town Bikes.
- Speaking of, we’re still tallying all the donations made through the season and will make our series donation to Blackstone Bikes, West Town Bikes & Big Marsh before the end of the year. THANK YOU to everyone who donated to such worthy causes.
- Several Chicago area riders also traveled up to WI the day before on Saturday to race at the Midwest Regional CX Championships and brought home jerseys. Congrats to Jordan Austin (Jr Women 15-18), Danny Warner (Masters 55+), & Jacob Huizenga (Single Speed). Full results are here.
- The Chicagoland CX season is done for the year, but there’s still one big race left. USAC CX National Championships start today (Tuesday) in Louisville, KY. Good luck to everyone traveling to race. We’ll try to keep up with results on Twitter and retweet results with CCC participants on the podium. Kenny has already put together a crib sheet of riders and start times in the comments here.
- Speaking of being done, congrats to all the riders who earned their USAC CX category upgrades. Yes, we see all those and we’re excited to see several riders upgrading right after Montrose. Good luck and we’ll see you in the next category in 2019. Kenny is already writing his race commentary notes.
- Speaking of next season, please keep those comments & suggestions emails coming. We can’t promise we’ll make all the changes everyone wants, but we want to hear from you.
- And finally… Please mark you calendars for Saturday January 12th around 6pm when we’ll be having the our Series Awards Party. We’re finally finalizing the final details but we’re changing things up this year with a new date, time, location, and less formal format so more people can attend. No tickets, no dinner, but still the same good company, conversation, and cheer. And of course cow bells, clean jerseys, and awards for our series winners and door prizes even if you didn’t win an overall jersey. More details to come next week.
- Oh man, was that yet another exciting Montrose Harbor / Illinois State CX Championship or what?? So many great races, so many stories to tell, so many state jerseys and series overall titles that went down to the wire. We hope you all had as much fun racing and riding as we did watching it all unfold. All the links for all the results you are looking for are at the bottom of the page here. Overall series and state champ winners are all listed here.
- There are a limited amount of Montrose posters still available (we realize some people did not want to deal with artwork in the mud). Also a couple prize checks were not picked up. Email [email protected] for info on both.
- If your bike touched the ground at Montrose, make sure to get it cleaned up before heading to the next race or hanging it up for the season. We’re sure every local shop has specials going on right now. Series sponsor The Pony Shop let us know they have a deal right now that completely tears down your bike to the frame, waxes the frameset, cleans all parts in our safe ultrasonic cleaner, repacks or replaces all bearings, cables, tape, and hydro fluid. Perfect for Road, cyclocross, and mountain bikes. The complete overhaul is 200.00 plus parts. All parts are 10% off with the special.
- While the CCC season may be over we still have some end-of-the-year things to do:
- First, while its still fresh in your head, drop us an email and let us know how we can make the series better next year. We’re always looking for ways to make the CCC the Best Amateur CX Series in the Country.
- B. We’ll have our awards party in January, probably the 2nd or 3rd weekend. We’re still working out the details, so stay tuned.
- III. We are still collecting donations for our series causes, Blackstone Bikes, West Town Bikes, and Big Marsh. If you’d like to make a donation through the series send us and email, or you can donate directly through the links above.
- Speaking of West Town and Blackstone, this coming Sunday the last CX race in the Chicagoland area takes place at Afterglow, hosted by the Chicago Cuttin’ Crew and back in Douglas Park. Come out and race, have a great time, and support the youth of Chicago.
- If you’re looking for something more racey, racey… the MidWest Regional CX Championships hosted by L5 Racing are being held the day before on Saturday up in Sun Prairie, WI.
- And speaking of Championships, the USA Cycling National CX Championships are being held next week in Louisville, KY. Good luck to everyone heading down to race.
- And finally… with the holiday season coming up very soon, if you have the means, please support our series sponsors when purchasing gifts for your loved ones.
- Another great Groundhog PSI-clocross weekend hosted by PSIMET out in Woodstock. The Pre-Deju-Vu course on Saturday was more power while Sunday’s Groundhog course was more “finesse”, and more weather too. Links to all results and lap times are here.
- Next up, the CCC travels closer to Chicago with our Wheeling Heritage event. Due to construction in the park the course will be slightly different from last year, but still mostly the same. Look for the course preview Thursday morning and remember pre-reg closes Thursday evening.
- Speaking of Wheeling… The Northbrook Bicycle Club is looking for a few volunteers to help with course set up, marshaling, and repair Saturday and Sunday. Please email Robert Paetsch for details. Shifts are typically three hours or less. Volunteers may race for free and get food and beverage perks too.
- Also speaking of this coming weekend… unless you have a bike shop in your basement or garage, your CX bike probably needs some love. Get it into your local bike shop ASAP for a clean up, tune up, etc. before the wheels literally come off at the next race!
- Looking towards the end of the season we here at the CCC are thinking about changing up the when and where of the awards party. The time and location would have to be family friendly (i.e. not just at a bar) and at least mostly centrally located. If you have ideas or suggestions please email us at [email protected].
- And finally… the 2nd annual Women’s Networking Event hosted by UPB Juniors will be held Saturday 11/17/18 at 2:15pm in the UPB tent at Pheasant Run Resort. As part of this event, UPB will also hold the Ultimate Pro Racer Raffle to benefit a Women Cat 3/4/5 at Montrose. Proceeds will go towards the 2019 Juniors CX Camp. The raffle tickets will be on sale 9a – 12pm Saturday and Sunday as well as during the networking event. Warm drinks and treats at 2:15 pm on that Saturday. All women racers are welcome to come and visit. UPB’s juniors are hosting and will be mingling.
Photo: Tim Radcliff
- Trick or Treat and thanks to everyone who came out to Campton Hills to race, cheer, and show off their best costumes. The Marching Band won the best costume contest and Tony Rienks (along w/ Joe Castello this year as Daft Punk) was given a lifetime costume achievement award. Links to all the results and lap times you’re looking for are here.
- John Gatto may not be racing, but he still came out to Campton with his Drones and GoPros and gave us this video gem. Special mention also to Nathaniel Allen for this Instagram video.
- Next on the calendar this SATURDAY is PSIMET’s Pre-Deja-Vu-All-Over-Again 2019 State Championship Course Preview Race. This is not a CCC series event. And as we mentioned last week, this is the preview for the 2019 State Championship, NOT this year’s (i.e. 2018) state champs which are at Montrose Harbor. PSIMET always hosts great events so don’t miss your chance to see next year’s state champs course early, which is completely different than the CCC series race on Sunday. Please pre-reg here for Saturday.
- Speaking of Sunday, the CCC series continues on SUNDAY with Groundhog PSI-clocross at the same park in Woodstock but on a completely different course. The normal course preview will be up at the regular time on Thursday. The normal course preview will be up at the regular time on Thursday.
- We haven’t heard of anyone going to the Pan-Am Championships in Canada this weekend, but if you are, good luck!
- It seems we’re getting similar weather to last season, which has meant a decent amount of rain, and usually on Sunday. Show your bike some love and and take it to your local bike shop to keep it in tip-top shape. Many shops are running specials/deals for the CX season, so don’t wait until sometime breaks!
- And finally… Our guy behind the lens Robert Clark is moving on to bigger and better things, meaning shooting larger UCI races for the rest of the CX season. We’re supper bummed (for us) but also super happy and excited for Robert. We’ve been very lucky to have Robert at our first five series races and will miss him the rest of the season. Check out his photos from the CCC series as well as several other cycling events over at robotfresh.com and if you see a photo you like consider making a purchase. Good luck Robert!!! If you consider yourself a shutterbug and would like an all access CCC media pass, please email us.
- Thanks to the entire ABD crew for another great Sunrise Park event on and around the original Heckle Hill. Links to all results are here. We know there were a few results errors the last 2 weeks and will have them 100% corrected later this week.
- Next up, the CCC heads just a bit farther West to Campton Cross. Please make sure you set your GPS coordinate to the correct park. This is our annual Halloween race, so bring your costume A Game and get your cameras ready. There might even be trick-or-treating at the team tents if people bring enough candy. Look for the regular update on Thursday at the regular time.
- Speaking of cameras, while not up just quite yet, our guy Robert Clark should have another gallery up for Sunrise Park soon. Check out all of his galleries here: robotfresh.com/2018chicrosscup
- Just a remind to everyone, especially the younger ladies to keep hair up in pony tails while racing. If One2Go and the USAC officials can’t see your bib number, we can’t score you. Thanks!
- If anyone is available to help out with Kiddie Cross the next two weekends, please email us ASAP. Thanks!
- While its not officially part of the official CCC series schedule officially, on Saturday 11/3/18 PSIMET will be hosting their “Pre-Deja-Vu-All-Over-Again 2019 State Championship Course Preview Race” at Emrickson Park in Woodstock, IL. This is NOT a preview for this year’s CX State Championships which will be held at Montrose Harbor in Chicago on 12/2/18. With a race name that long, we’re not sure how anyone could confuse the two, but we just want to make sure. However, NEXT YEAR PSIMET will be hosting the CX State Champs in Woodstock, hence the preview this year. If you still aren’t sure what’s going on take a look at our schedule page, email us, or ask Kenny on Sunday.
- Speaking of Montrose…
Sponsorship opportunities for the 2018 Illinois State Cyclocross Championship and series finale are available!Spidermonkey Cycling, with Ten27 Cycling Club, are seeking additional sponsors to help alleviate the cost increases associated with having the event at the legendary Montrose Beach location in the city of Chicago. Event title sponsorship with multiple branding opportunities and expo locations to activate your business are both available. For more information, email Mark Zalewski.
- And finally… Here’s our annual reminder that, if you are warming up on course you should never, ever, ever, evar ride in front of someone who is still racing. We know it can be difficult to tell sometimes with large fields and riders spread out all over the course. However, it is your responsibility while pre-riding to figure it out, NOT the person still racing to tell you they are still racing. Full stop. Let’s make sure everyone gets their fair and full time to race. If you need more time to pre-ride, please arrive at the race venue earlier, bring a trainer, or eat more doughnuts. Thanks in advance!
- Thanks to the Beverly Bike crew for another great race at Dan Ryan Woods along the Major Taylor bike trail. Whether you love mud and hills or hate them, the course was challenging, fun and everything in between. And from the pictures and smiles we saw at the race, it seems most of you all like the muddy stuff. Links to all the results you’re looking for are here.
- Speaking of pics, our guy behind the camera Robert Clark at RobotFresh.com dried out enough to get a few photos up online. Check them out and send him some love if you can. Check out the gallery here: robotfresh.com/ccc3
- Speaking of moving pictures, John Gatto was out again with his GoPros and drones and what we consider the best soundtrack: https://vimeo.com/293896634
- So, you raced Beverly Bike CX and now your cranks won’t turn, your wheels are locked up solid, and your brake levers groan when you pull them. Yuck! Luckily there are many local bike shops out there who aren’t too busy this time of year and would love to help you. Check out bike cleaning and overhaul deals from series sponsors the Pony Shop, Tailwind Cycles, Main St Bikes, PSIMET, and others. Seriously, get your bikes cleaned up and ready for Carpentersville and the rest of the series before you run out of time.
- Speaking of, next up the series heads North West to Carpentersville for our 4th race at the Woodland School. Race director and series director Jeff Provisor and his Sasquatch Squadron always find a way to turn a normal looking patch of land into a great CX course, so we can’t wait to see what they have in store for us this year. Look for the course preview at the normal time Thursday morning.
- And finally… while we all would like to have a perfect race or perfect season, sometimes we slip, sometimes we fall, and sometimes we biff it trying to jump the barriers. But as long as we get up, try again, and learn from our mistakes we eventually get rad. Just like racers, we here at the CCC series make plenty of mistakes and we unintentionally made one on Sunday at Beverly Bike CX.
With lots of hills (and this year mud) and large differences in riders’ fitness and ability across all categories, the Dan Ryan course is notoriously hard from a race director’s and series standpoint to first and foremost make safe for EVERYONE, and secondly get the lap distance and lap times dialed in. The Beverly Bike crew is comprised of many EMTs and fire fighters (they are also our weekly EMTs) and everyone’s safety is always their first concern. At most (flat) races we generally aim for ~7 minute lap times for the fastest riders which means the youngest Juniors and Cat 5’s will usually be riding at least ~9-10 minute laps. Add in hills and mud and those lap time variations can become even wider.
On Sunday the course was laid out and before racing even began an up/downhill section in the last wooded area was taken out for both safety and lap times concerns for all fields. Then, after the Masters 35+ race the initial first uphill and wooded downhill section were taken out, again for safety and lap time concerns for everyone. The series has been toying with the idea of a “pro-only” section for the Cat 1/2 Men and Women, and the intention on Sunday was to add back in the first uphill and wooded downhill section for those fields. After realizing the Women Cat 3/4’s would be on the course at the same time as the Women Cat 1/2’s and consulting with the USAC officials on safety and lap times concerns, we decided that adding back that section was not the best choice. And unfortunately, even though we can perform lots of CX magic, bending the space-time continuum to run two different courses for two different fields at the same time just wasn’t possible.
The first mistake we made on Sunday was poorly communicating these changes to everyone well in advance. Blame it on the rain and the 6,348,901 other things that happen during the day, but we should have done a better job here and we will make a concerted effort do better going forward. Our second mistake was then routing the Men Cat 1/2/3 field onto that section of track as originally intended without thinking about parity with the Women Cat 1/2 field. This was unintentional and had nothing to do with gender or disrespecting anyone, and everything to do with safety, lap times, and time management (as detailed previously).
But as mentioned above, when we fall, we get back up and do better. As a result, going forward the series has decided on a few new standards to make sure everyone races on the same course, with the exception of Juniors and Cat 4/5’s. And since we don’t have any actual pros in the series after Barry Wicks moved back to Oregon, and Stephen Hyde is out with a cracked sternum, we’re fine with not having a “pro-only” section.
We know this little series isn’t perfect, but our priorities are always safety first and fairness to everyone. The fairness part can be tricky sometimes with so many racers and varied interests, but its a lot easier to be writing these words to all of you than to someone’s loved ones about a rider being in the hospital. As always, we welcome your input and feedback at [email protected]. Thanks for racing and making this the best amateur CX series in the country. Now let’s get on with the rest of the season!
- Just a quick update this week.
- Congrats to everyone who race up at the Trek CX Cup over the weekend. We were watching via our partners One2Go and saw a lot of great results. Series photography Robert Clark was also snapping pics again and even Sven Nys liked his work. Extra congratulations to Jacob Huizenga of the Chicago Cuttin’ Crew who scored the hattrick and won all 3 Single Speed races (we heard the 2nd from the last row after missing his call-up). No wonder he’s in the CCC Leaders Jersey in that category.
- Speaking of, we had six new series leaders after Caldwell Woods, a few of whom we missed giving jersey to. The follow riders should see Kenny before the start at Beverly CX at Dan Ryan Woods… McCarthy (Masters 55+), Roth (Masters 65+), Zakrajsek (Men Cat 3), Christiansen (Women Cat 3/4), and Kaufman (Men Cat 4).
- Speaking of overall results, we’ve seen a few different team names not matching and the usual One Day to Annual USAC licenses skewing results. Please make sure to double check your results as posted in the Overall Results GoogleSheet and on USACycling.org. We also make mistakes here and here… so please, please let us know if there are errors and we can make changes easy peasy lemon squeezey.
- Up next the CCC has another week off as the UCI World Cup visits Jingle Cross in Iowa City, IA for round two. Good luck to everyone heading west to race, spectate, cheer, or just hang out in the corn fields.
- And finally… remember there is local racing this weekend. Half Acre Cycling‘s CX Eliminator is at Big Marsh this Saturday 9/29. Details are on BikeReg
- UPDATE: Today is unbelievable series announcer Kenny Labbé’s birthday. Please wish him all the best!
- Thanks to xXx Racing for hosting another hot and humid Caldwell Woods. The Svens were there and so were the mosquitoes. Robert Clark was also there snapping pics again and has a gallery up on robotfresh.com.
- Links to all results are here. Note that we are now uploading total and all lap times to USAC. Also for all the propeller heads, over on our consolidated lap time GoogleSheet we’ve been doing some data analysis and aggregation. Let us know if you see anything surprising or want to dig in more yourself.
- Our results data are only as good as the inputs into them however, so please make sure you register with your correct USAC license number, have your team name correctly listed in USAC, and if you earn an upgrade, change your name, etc. please email us so we can make sure you are staged properly and results are correct. Thanks!
- Next up, the CCC series takes a 2 week break before heading South to Dan Ryan Woods for Beverly Bike CCC #3. The Beverly Bike guys always have some kind of surprise in store for us, and a nice hill, so it should be fun.
- But this coming week is the Trek CX Cup in Waterloo, WI. This event is also the opening event of the Telenet UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup, so all the big name Euro pros will be there along with plenty of locals and Americans from around the country. Good luck to everyone racing in WI this weekend!
- And the following week everyone heads to Iowa City, IA for Jingle Cross, which is the 2nd event in the World Cup. Both of these events are very well run, with amazing courses, and plenty of competition… and that’s even before the top level pros ride them. Definitely make it there if you can.
- But if traveling to far off neighboring states isn’t your thing, check out Half Acre Cycling‘s CX Eliminator at Big Marsh next Saturday 9/29 (same weekend as Jingle Cross). A portion of the proceeds will go towards further development of Big Marsh making future races there even more fun and challenging. Further details are on BikeReg
- If you’re not traveling to Jingle Cross or CX Eliminator is too close, our friends North of the cheddar curtain are hosting Lion Cross in Waterford on 9/29. The venue is only a 1.5 hour drive from downtown Chicago, and they will have a food and coffee on site, plus a kids course.
- A quick reminder that if you are an “experienced” racer, meaning above a Cat 5, but don’t want to commit to buying a full annual USAC license ($75 adults, $40 juniors), you do have the option to purchase a USAC Experienced One Day license for only $25 (per day of course). These license are only available for purchase online on USA Cycling’s website but are a handy way to get back into racing on a budget. You can even apply the cost to an annual license if you do decide to go all in. Also a reminder that if you have your license listed as “One Day” in your BikeReg rider profile you will automatically be charged $10 when pre-reg’ing online.
- And finally… we need officials. While we’re all out there racing there are a very small number of USA Cycling officials who run each event, apply the rules, and sign off on official/final results. Illinois is in desperate need of officials and without them we cannot race. If you, your significant other, or anyone else you know are even remotely interested or are just curious as to what is involved in helping shape and support our sport, please contact the Illinois Cycling Association (ICA) or see Brenda Feehery at an upcoming event.