World Indoor Cyclocross Championship of the World! (UPDATED)
On Saturday November 8, 2008 Alberta based cyclocrossers and cycling enthusiasts woke up like kids on Christmas morning and headed out to Springbank, Alberta to participate in the inaugural Veloplzen Cycling Club, World Indoor Cyclocross Championships….of the World! – Fueled by Steam Whistle Pilsner.
Photos by Bill Quinney
Over 100 racers and spectators were treated to a cross course full of sharp corners, barriers, a gap jump that claimed the bikes of even the top level cyclists and a skinny plank ride over the pit of Steam Whistle empties, which was obviously filled by Keith Bayly while designing the course. The racing was fun, fast and furious and full of epic wipeouts which resulted in a large number of wheel and shifter sales at the local bike shops in Alberta the following day.
The race format was 4 at a time, 3-lap, heat style racing with 3 categories – Single cog, women and open men. A few highlights of the single cog category had to be the bike handling lesson given to everyone during the race between all of the Calgary area couriers who raced in the dirt and hit the gap jump on their fixies with slick tires! The single cog final also saw the end of the Mr. Henson bike which had all of his spokes break while landing the gap jump. In the end it was a young gun that showed everyone how to race with one cog with Felix Wilburg taking the win.
The women’s championship race was won by 2008 National Cyclocross Championship Silver Medalist, Pepper Harlton, who was even beating up on the guys in the opening heats. The men’s title was won by Dave Roberts 1982….not to be confused with Dave Roberts 2008. Dave took the lead near the end of the first lap after race leader Shawn Bunnin couldn’t handle the pressure of riding over the skinny with 40 empties flying at him and he crumpled like a bag of chips when he hit the ground. The winner in each category was rewarded with a world championship coffee mug, a handmade lei and a snazzy tweed champion’s sport jacket.
Racers and spectators were well entertained with the exciting racing as well as dancing to two local bands, The Bownesians and the Smokin’ 45′s who were rocking the house during the race.
Big thanks goes out to all of the volunteers and the sponsors for the event – Steam Whistle Pilsner, FernieResortside.com, Bow Cycle, Campione Cycle Calgary, PODS, The Purple Orchid and Pedalhead.
461 more photos can be viewed [here]
Even MORE photos can be surfed [here]