Austin Tri-Cyclist Blog

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Cyclo-Cross Nationals in Town

By Kat Hunter

Chris Warren racing the Cyclo-cross Male Non-Championships 10-29, Jan 7 

This week Austin is hosting the Cyclo-cross National Championships for the first time in 37 years. Austinites have rolled out the red carpet for visiting athletes, providing special events like Durata Training’s “basscamp” (think music, not the fish) and even some particularly cold, nasty weather over the weekend to make athletes from northern climes feel right at home.

Pro Jeremy Powers has made several stops at ATC this week, and ATC built up his Focus Mares CX. ATC mechanic and pro cyclist Tristan Uhl, on 787 Racing, will race the male single-speed event at 4 p.m. today, as well as the elite men’s race on Sunday. Sammi Runnels, who races on the road for ATC Racing and on Team Super Awesome for cross, snagged a UCI point at the Gateway Cross Cup in St. Louis in October; she’ll race in the elite women’s field on Sunday, as well. Earlier today, ATC mechanic Chris Warren competed in the 10-29 non-championship race for ATC Racing (final results pending).

For the uninitiated, what is cyclo-cross? To be honest…I don’t know. This year I’ve seen a flood of cross-related posts and photos from Facebook friends and sites like This is what I can tell you…it involves mud, pain, a vicious sprint start, weird obstacles, carrying your bike, falling, funny kits, and lots of beer. In short, it sounds like fun.

Tristan Uhl's ride for the single-speed event,
a Cannondale SuperX. 
The current forecast for the weekend is dire for Austin—cold and rainy from Friday through Sunday, with the temperature dipping to the low 30s on Saturday. But spectating (we hear heckling cross racers is a sport in itself) is supposed to be better the worse the conditions are, and with the event being held in Zilker Park, my husband and I have decided we have no excuse not to be there for the show. We’re also hosting elite pro Jessica Cutler of Jamis Bicycles (racing on the road for Team Colavita this year) so are learning a lot more about the sport. Regardless of the weather, we’re excited to spectate our first cross race on Sunday, watching the elite women’s (2:45 p.m.) and elite men’s (4 p.m.) races.

Check out the nation’s best this week! You’ll find the full schedule here.

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