by Blake Bedoya
September has always been my favorite month of the year. It’s the month of my birthday, the hot summer weather is finally gone, but best of all, September marks the start of cyclocross.
A love affair of sorts, that I’ve had since 2003 when I did my first Cyclocross race. It’s a difficult sport to explain to those who have never seen it. If you ask 5 people, “What it is cyclocross?” you will most likely get 5 different answers. I can best describe it as an off road race, held on modified road-style bikes. Now throw in some obstacles, mud, and a healthy measure of rowdy fans, and there you go; cyclocross.
Like many bike race disciplines, cyclocross is a funny thing. Have you ever found yourself speaking to another cyclist… sharing race stories, comparing notes, lines, even sizing each-other up? There have been many times when I’ve frankly stated in an exchange “my favorite race was…” or “my best ride was…”. When the fact is I don’t really remember much at all. If you were to ask me what I was wearing that day, or what tire pressure I was using, I wouldn’t have the slightest clue.
So what exactly makes these races so memorable? The weather, the gear, or perhaps the place you finished in? I haven’t been able to figure out what that exact formula is that makes a day that would normally be “just another race” into something special.