The Parks & Recreation Department is once again teaming up with the Northampton Cycling Club (NCC), to sponsor the spring Junior Cyclocross Training program.
Cyclocross is one of the country’s fastest growing participation sports. Think of it as steeplechase on a bicycle. It combines the skills and action of mountain biking with the speed and power of road cycling. Cyclocross is typically raced on a 1 to 2 mile loop consisting of grass, dirt trails, pavement, sand, mud, barriers, obstacles, tree roots and hills. Cyclocross races are usually held in the fall and winter in cool and cold weather, rain, snow, ice or sunshine.
Anyone who can ride a bike can probably do cyclocross.
Definitely, you will need a bicycle in good working order (a mountain bike is fine but you’ll probably want to remove all of the water bottle cages), a snug fitting helmet and a full water bottle. In addition, for your own comfort (but not essential), you might want cycling shorts, sunglasses, and cycling gloves.
This activity is open to anyone in grades 2 through 8, boys and girls, who have a bike and like to ride it. Depending upon registration numbers, we will likely split this group into smaller groups depending upon ability so that each group will get ability-specific training.
You will receive a team shirt (included with your registration fee). In addition to the cycling skills you will learn, expect to make new friends, get in really good shape, have a ton of fun and perhaps get so stoked about cyclocross that you might want to race this fall as part of the NCC Junior Cyclocross Team.
The training program will be run by longtime NCC members and racers who have raced in hundreds of cyclocross races in New England in the last few years. In addition, we are lucky that a handful of professional cyclocross racers live locally and may stop by on occasion to help out and offer advice.