Have you ever thought of trying some cyclocross
in the winter? It’s probable that most triathletes haven’t. The winter is the off season and Sunday’s are usually a morning ride of steady miles preparing for the new season.
Cycloross may however be an alternative winter pursuit you may wish to have a go at.
There are benefits from it that may be of use to those in triathlon. If you are involved in cross country running and getting very muddy
then it may be even more appealing!Cyclocross events typically run over a marked cross country course, sometimes with obstacles. The courses can be very twisting and have sharp turns. Local league races last for 50 mins and results are based on the number of laps you complete. After 50 minutes a bell is rung as the leader comes through denoting the last lap for everyone.There are other cross races like the Yorkshire 3 peaks
The benefits that you could find from trying cyclocross relate to bike handling skills. Obviously because it is cross country with lots of mud and uneven ground there is plenty of opportunity to improve bike handling. The twisting courses often with some sharp turns are also good for honing skills. Mounting
and dismounting the bike is also something to practice if there are obstacles
to cross and hills to climb.
Apart from bike handling skills, racing over cross country is a great workout for and hour. You don’t need a cyclocross bike either. A mountain bike is fine or even a bike with wider wheels which some more grippy tyres can be put on to.
Local league races are run by both the BCF and TLI and take place in all weather. If you want to have a go perhaps a good start would be one of the races run by the BCF at the University Race Course (cricket ground) on Green Lane . There is one on 13th November and 15th January. Races start at 12:30pm unlike the ungodly hour of triathlon! Just to end here is a clip of cyclocross in the northeast in the 1950’s