Pin It

Slip Sliding Away: Snowy Crossaflixion offers a sneak peak at 'cross nationals 

It would have been easy to blow off last Saturday’s Crossaflixion cyclocross race. With snow falling heavily on race day, the appeal of a Nordic ski, or a day on the sofa with a glass of wine, was obvious.

It would have been easy to blow off last Saturday's Crossaflixion cyclocross race. With snow falling heavily on race day, the appeal of a Nordic ski, or a day on the sofa with a glass of wine, was obvious. With nationals less than two weeks away, however, many local racers packed up bikes instead of skis and headed up Cascade Lakes Highway.

Brent Chapman, the course designer and self-described Director of Fun and Pain for Fresh Air Sports, adapted to the weather at Seventh Mountain by shortening the lap to make it more accessible and safe. "Friday night it started to snow, and it got so heavy we couldn't ride the course," he explained. "It was melting and freezing constantly."

Local pro, Adam Craig, opened up the throttle early in the Men's A race, and entertained the hardcore group of snowball-throwing spectators by hauling ass down the rutted, snowy descent with his hands lightly on the handlebars.

"The downhill section was sketchy," said Craig, "and entertaining." A crash on his second lap filled Craig's gloves with snow. The 29-year-old professional mountain biker had built a sizable enough lead to warrant a pit stop at his car for dry gloves.

"All due respect to the competition," Craig said, "but I wanted warm hands more than winning."

Craig, who found late-season form after recovering from knee surgery last winter, has been an unexpected contender on the professional cyclocross circuit this fall and is racing in next week's nationals to win.

"I ride until 'cross nationals," said Craig. "It keeps me in shape until the weather properly sucks." Craig, who popped a wheelie mid-race for demanding spectators, is cautiously optimistic. "We'll see if I've got what it takes to win the big one," he said.

"I thought it was fabulous," said Serena Bishop, the winner of the Women's A race, "because the course was really challenging and 'cross is about nasty weather. If you really love 'cross you have to embrace whatever Mother Nature throws at you."

Bishop, who is competing in next week's throw down, appreciated the chance to race in Bend. "It's not only fun, but really good preparation for nationals," said Bishop.

Pin It


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Newsletter Signup

Cascades Reader Logo Cascades Reader

Get your daily dose of news for Central Oregon and beyond, delivered to your inbox five days a week. Powered by the Source Weekly.

Latest in Outside Features

  • Cross is Coming

    • Aug 21, 2019
    Cyclocross unites cycling community for dusty, good-natured fun More »
  • A Healthy Self

    • Aug 14, 2019
    As teens and young adults struggle more than ever with mental health issues, wilderness therapy offers a way to unplug More »
  • Battle at Bachelor

    • Aug 7, 2019
    A premier disc golf competition, set amongst towering trees and mountain views, continues to grow More »
  • More »

More by Michelle Mercer

Readers also liked…

  • Central Oregon Now and Then

    Central Oregon Now and Then

    Where Bend streets got their names
    • Apr 11, 2018
  • Crowds in the Backcountry

    Crowds in the Backcountry

    As national forest leaders consider quotas for local wilderness areas, some local wilderness advocates weigh in
    • Jul 11, 2018

© 2019 LAY IT OUT INC | 704 NW GEORGIA AVE, BEND, OREGON 97703  |   Privacy Policy

Website powered by Foundation