Citing sponsorship issues, Josh Schuler, the Oval Omnium Race Director, has decided to cancel the 2014 edition of the track style races. This popular event has been taking place on the CSU Oval for the past 6 years but has struggled to find consistent leadership since Tim Anderson stepped away from full time race directing. The series was originally launched by Anderson as a way to build support for a velodrome here in Fort Collins and has introduced countless people to grass roots racing. Organizers hope to bring it back for 2015.
Cyclocross is a physically demanding, off-road brand of bike racing. A typical course consists of a 1.5 to 2 mile loop with paved and dirt sections over rolling terrain. As if that weren’t enough, there are natural and man-made obstacles that force riders to quickly jump off of their bikes, carry them, and remount when they’ve cleared them. When thinking of a way to get your health on track and lose a few hundred pounds, there are lots of crazy exercises and diets you might try. But cyclocross?
Ernest Gagnon of Billerica, MA did exactly that. About 4 years ago, Ernest weighed nearly 570 pounds and his health was failing. Only in his early 30’s, his diabetes was becoming more serious and his doctors had begun talking about gastric bypass surgery. Instead of surgery, Ernest decided to take matters into his own hands, or feet, as it were. At over 500 pounds, he was going to start cycling and pursue bike racing; a dream he had as a child.
After contacting several cyclists in his area via Facebook, the mission was on. Get active. Lose weight. Begin a healthier lifestyle. In the process, Ernest also found something else. Himself. He gained a network of friends and the confidence to take racing cyclocross head-on. He has since raced 15 cyclocross races in several states. This October, he will be taking on Cross of the North in Fort Collins, CO. All of his prior races have been in the northeastern United States. “I’m honored to come to Colorado for Cross of the North” says Ernest. “I’ve never been west of the eastern time zone, so it will be fun!”
The weekend of October 10-12, Fort Collins is hosting Cross of the North with Ernest as the guest of the host team, 1st City Cycling. They, along with Your Group Ride and Cross of the North, are sponsoring Ernest’s trip to Colorado. "On behalf of the Fort Collins cycling community, I'm excited to share our love of the sport with Ernest and I look forward to Ernest sharing his love of cycling with us.” says Dan Porter, Founder and President of Your Group Ride. “It's going to be a great race weekend.”
Timothy Lynch, Race Director of Cross of the North sums it up best. "Ernest Gagnon is an inspiration to us all and he reminds us that the sport of cyclocross can be enjoyed by everyone of any age, or fitness level. Whether you race or spectate, cyclocross is about the passion on the bike and the community and camaraderie it promotes. We are thrilled that Ernest has chosen the 2014 Cross of the North for his first Colorado cyclocross experience and look forward to hosting him!"
If you’ve never been to a cyclocross race, Cross of the North 2014 will be a great introduction. Don’t race bikes? Come out and simply experience the Colorado cycling community. Who knows, you may be inspired to do more than just ride a bike.
Cross of the North 2014 will be held at The Ranch Events Complex at 5290 Arena Circle, Loveland, CO 80538 the weekend of October 10-12. Events will include races on both Saturday and Sunday as well as a “Friday Night Lights” event on October 10. For more details on the weekend, please visit http://www.crossofthenorth.com
Cross Of The North
First City Cycling Team
Your Group Ride
More on Ernest:
Velo News: http://bit.ly/1hxTHzy
This is an opinion piece by Reno Toffoli. Reno's opinions don't necessary represent the opinions of Your Group Ride or its advertisers but I always enjoy his rants. If you'd like to write an article for YGR, please email me at email@example.com
It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of computers and electronics. Things with no moving parts that intermittently function correctly do not fascinate me the way they seem to fascinate most other people. Instead, they annoy the hell out of me. Any time electronic devices come within a 20 foot radius of me, they quit working correctly, usually at the exact moment that I need them most. I have absolutely no patience for this and I often end up throwing the offending device against something rather hard and experience great joy in watching all the pieces fly in chaotic little paths determined by their velocity, mass, and gravity. For me, these kinds of things just make my life more difficult, not easier. Because of that, I choose to live without them…for the most part.
My cell phone, for example, is just a phone and a camera. That’s about it. It’s about a half step away from being one of those old people cell phones with the really big buttons. I probably use the camera function more than anything else although it does have a cool star map thing in it that I find useful sometimes because I like stars, and space, and things like theoretical physics…at least the small bits of it that I can understand. I’m not real talkative or real social so telephones don’t excite me much. My phone does text but I use that even less than the regular phone part because texting is the most inefficient form of communication ever invented. Period.
As you’ve probably guessed by now, I enjoy the analog side of the universe much more than the 1, 0, on, off, it works, it doesn’t work, digital side of things. I like things that are tangible and tactile; things that you can touch, feel, see, smell, and hold, (except for that theoretical physics thing). I love machines and I love to watch machines work, fix them when they don’t work and try to make them work better. That’s what I’m about.
So let’s jump to our favorite machine…the one invented over a hundred years ago that at the core hasn’t really been improved a whole lot and the one that is still the most efficient (literally) form of transportation ever invented…yep, that one.
The thing about the bicycle is that it’s simple, and beautiful, and efficient, and it just works. You can make it more complicated, and it still works…it just needs more maintenance. You can see it work, and you can repair it when it doesn’t work. There’s no voodoo (unless it’s a Voodoo), or witchcraft, or magic smoke to let out. It’s simple, it works, done.
So why, then, is there this growing push to make bikes electronic? It started on road bikes 5 or so years ago (Mavic's Zap from 1992 doesn't count) when a certain Japanese company decided that it would be a good idea to create a drivetrain that shifted with electricity. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of electricity; I teach it for crying out loud. Electricity has made me a lot of money over the years. I understand it, appreciate it, it’s great but I don’t want it on my bike.
For Immediate ReleaseJune 5thFort Collins CO
Set to open in October, the Source Endurance Training Center of the Rockies has started construction on their training center inside the new Peloton Cycles location on North College. The training center will be geared towards cyclists of all types, recreation to racer, and will be the ideal place to train during the cold wet winter months. With a full computrainer studio, exercise testing, Multi rider system, and weight set up, the training center will provide daily classes, and scheduling for individual use and workouts. Stay tuned for more details as the construction moves further along. Please visit www.source-e.net for information on Source Endurance.
Local ultra distance mountain biker, Scott Ruff, became the second recipient of YGR Wounded Rider Program benefits. YGR WRP director, Gretchen Potts met with at the New Belgium Short Track Races on Tuesday. Here's what she had to say.
I met up with Scott Ruff today at the New Belgium Short Track. Its been a few weeks since his accident and he is up and around now. Scott told me that they just removed the bands immobilizing his jaw and it was nice to see him smiling. So the story goes that he was in Fruita, CO with friends riding the Kokopelli trail. They were on the Horsethief Bench portion of the trail system when he went down, over the bars. Unfortunately his chin stopped the fall, and his jaw was broken in two places. He was rushed to the hospital and underwent surgery in Grand Junction to repair his jaw. He has had some difficulty with the recovery because his jaw healed "sorta crooked" and his teeth are not lined up.....which makes it real difficult to chew food. Apparently one of the fractures was too close to a major nerve to allow any major bone manipulation. The good news is that this can...and will be fixed....but its gonna take a little time. So we made sure he had lots of Noosa yogurt and plenty of Walrus ice cream to help stem the tide. He was very grateful for the care package and happy to know the NoCo cycling community is looking out for him. He thinks that this year he will sit out the Colorado Trail Race but plans to be back at it next year. Thanks again folks.