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Cross Worlds! A Thread

Vos chases Brand
Chris Fontecchio

Hey y’all! Coming to you from a Waffle House, where Ant1 is trying to prevent Sui Juris from spilling fake syrup on my computer...

Alright, that isn’t happening right now, but I am pretty sure it’s coming later. Anyway, here are some sights from today’s world championships of cyclocross in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Leaders hit the drop
Chris Fontecchio

First, the course is outstanding. It happens to be playing fast, thanks to the weather (not complaining, BTW). Riders in all fields appear to be running what I would call gravel tires, with the fairly stubble-y tread, not real mud knobbies. It’s just all about speed for them.

But it’s also a very flow-y course too, feels like it makes sense and is not at all gimmicky, and is a terrific place for spectators. It’s crowded, so not every place you stand is going to work out perfectly for you. But we were able to find a few different places where you could see three or four passes of the race, and a video screen. The hill climb is clearly taking a toll, but there are places where you can see people taking a moment to recover. Given that the races spread out pretty well, I would argue that the competition is validating the course.

Air show

Between the U23 men’s race and the Elite Women, some guy in a crop duster put on a show, spinning and banking and climbing and diving to uncomfortable heights. It was pretty cool.

U23 stair runners
Chris Fontecchio

Crowds seem pretty loud. The US has a good reputation for generating noisy, exciting events, and this is no exception, covid notwithstanding.

I’m pretty stoked for Marianne Vos. Not that Brand didn’t deserve it equally, and frankly I’m glad they ended up sharing the work, because Brand was getting a little peeved at towing Vos around in the middle laps. But it was ideal conditions for Vos, fast and not overly technical (which I think she’s probably also good at? But some others maybe a bit better). It’s her eighth title, second on American soil, and it’s basically like watching, I dunno, Michael Jordan going to work? She is a legend.

OK back home...

Chris Fontecchio