Tim Johnson joins USA Cycling Foundation as development director


Registration for CrossVegas, including new e-bike race, opens Tuesday

LONGMONT, Colo. (BRAIN) — Organizers of CrossVegas, the cyclocross race held during Interbike week in Las Vegas, will open racer registration at 8 a.m. MT Tuesday, Aug. 1.

Registration for CrossVegas, including new e-bike race, opens Tuesday

LONGMONT, Colo. (BRAIN) — Organizers of CrossVegas, the cyclocross race held during Interbike week in Las Vegas, will open racer registration at 8 a.m. MT Tuesday, Aug.

Rapha Women’s Cross Long Sleeve Souplesse Jersey review

If it’s cold enough for foggy mornings and muddy walks, it means the cyclocross season has arrived, and that means heavy dew and heavy breathing, jittery cold starts and sweaty, steamy racing. It also means long sleeves and that’s where the Rapha Women’s Cross Long Sleeve Souplesse Jersey comes in. It’s ready for racing: slim-fit, stretchy and lightweight, but offering enough coverage to keep off the chill. 

A jersey costing this much needs to work very hard to impress, and I’m not generally a fan of attempts at ‘cycling niche’ marketing, but you can actually wear the souplesse jersey on a mountain bike or road ride without any funny looks or inner turmoil. The truth is though, it’s perfect for cyclocross. The fabric is the ideal weight, for starters.

I haven’t yet had the need to shoulder the bike since wearing the Souplesse, but the subtly padded patch on the right shoulder would protect from bumps and bruises

Cyclocross, at least the way I do it, is a sweaty affair. Even when I’m not racing, my local rides take in steep switchbacks, grunty, muddy bridleways, long road climbs and singletrack descents that have me down on the drops, every muscle taught and abs tensing hard. ‘Cross is rarely a relaxing bimble, and the sweat rolls off, but in the thick of the mud and gurning, the Souplesse lets out that heat. With fabric any heavier, I’d have been rolling up my sleeves and wishing I was in arm warmers. Any lighter and I’d have been disappointed and using words like ‘flimsy’.


The fit of the Souplesse jersey is ‘cross-perfect, too. It’s a slim fit, like all Rapha (I take a large but am a size 10), but the exaggerated whale tale speaks to the ‘crosser who is descending hard on the drops, or in head-down race position. It’s a sleek, professional fit; tailored with knowledge of our sport at the fore.

The details count, too, and not just the funky geometric design and ice-blue colourway. Slurping gels during a race is hard enough, but rifling around in a too-narrow back pocket desperate for those gloopy calories is enough to make me rage, or at best lose the line and nose dive into a thicket of brambles (true story). The three pockets in the Souplesse are easy to reach, have wide enough openings to get a gloved hand in and out quickly, and there’s a zippy one too for the car key.

Rapha Souplesse Thermal Bib Shorts

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Wilier Triestina says it will sue Belgian rider over alleged hidden motor use at cyclocross worlds

ZOLDER, Belgium?(BRAIN) — The CEO of the Italian bike brand Wilier Triestina says the company will sue Belgian cyclocross racer? Femke Van den Driessche, who is accused of using a hidden motor at the cyclocross world championships on Saturday. Andrea Gastaldello posted a statement on the company website that said in part, “Our Company will take legal action against the athlete and against any responsible for this very serious matter, in order to safeguard the good name and image of the company, marked by professionalism and seriousness in 110 years of history.” Full Wilier Triestina statement. Van den Driessche was competing in the U23 women’s race when one of her pit bikes was examined by UCI officials and then confiscated.?Van den Driessche, who was one of the race favorites, later dropped out of the race with mechanical problems.She races for the Belgium-based?Kleur Op Maat-Nodrugs team, which is sponsored by Wilier Trestina.? Van den Driessche and her father have told the press that the bike did not belong to her.

Specialized CruX Elite X1

Specialized gave the carbon models within the CruX family a subtle yet significant makeover for 2016 model year. The CruX Elite X1 boasts front and rear thru-axles and a solid component spec, but it also comes with significant compatibility issues.

Built for speed and precision

In its stock form, the CruX Elite X1 has the potential to be a potent weapon for recreational racers


The CruX typifies North American cyclocross frame design, with a low bottom bracket to carve through corners and a relatively slack head angle that gives the rider confidence at speed. Its handling is not as intuitive through tight, low-speed turns as some European cyclocross bikes with high and tight geometry, but it doesn’t require an excessive amount of rider input, either. If, like me, you approach cyclocross from a mountain bike background, you’ll appreciate the dogged handling of the CruX.

The original design brief for this cyclocross racer was to build a ‘Tarmac for dirt’ and this still rings true. The CruX is stiff, with nary a hint of flex when sprinting out of the saddle. There are more comfortable options out there, such as the silky smooth Trek Boone, but the CruX is far from punishing.

Sorted frame design with unsupported ‘standards’

Solid equipment for the amateur racer


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NAHBS 2015 to debut new award, ’cross race

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (BRAIN) — For its 2015 edition in March, the North American Handmade Bicycle Show will introduce a new category, the Artisan Award, and a cyclocross race pitting framebuilders against one another. The Artisan Award, one of more than 25 honors to be handed out at the 11th annual show, was created to recognize builders who fabricate as much of the bike as possible — or even the entire bike.

Pro Bike: Australian Nick Both’s Focus Mares CX 1.0

The National team participating in the 2014 Cyclocross World Championships at Hoogerheide, Netherlands signals a change of tide for Australia’s booming cyclocross scene.

Nick Both, Australia’s sole elite men representative will be joined by 2013 National Champion Lisa Jacobs and Melissa Anset in elite women’s; Alexander Meyland and Tom Chapman in the U23 men’s; and Nicholas Smith in the U19 men’s. The team is unproven outside of the fresh domestic scene, however the athletes have proven strong in other cycling disciplines.

For 2014, Nick joined the Australian Focus Bikes Cyclocross team and with this comes a new bike just in time for the World Championships. Although the local team isn’t aligned with the Jeremy Powers’ American-based Rapha-Focus team, they do use the team bike due to the proven build.

Nick Both is a well-known name in Australia’s mountain bike scene, with consistent cross country and marathon results spanning over the past decade. Recently, like many other local mountain bikers, Nick moved his attention to the growing sport of cyclocross.

Standing at a height of 1.82cm, Nick rides Focus’ largest frame size. In order to get his ideal handlebar setup and counter the short 140mm headtube, Nick has flipped his stem into a rather un-stylish upright position, even with this he still has a 110mm saddle to bar drop.

It’s a mostly stock build with a few key modifications in custom wheels and a change of brakes.

As an accomplished wheel builder and employee with the local HED distributor, it’s not surprising that we found Nick on a custom set of HED wheels that could be an indicator of things to come from the brand. The wheels make use of HED’s wide tubular Stinger 3 rims laced to HED’s aluminium Novembre centerlock hubs with Sapim CX-Ray spokes. In order to provide the support for the disc brakes, the wheels use rear 24H rims both front and back.

Glued onto these custom wheels are Schwalbe Rocket Ron 33mm tubulars, Nick picked these as a strong all-round conditions rubber which should be decent on grass, mud or dirt – he’s just hoping there’s no ice.

Nick isn’t a SRAM sponsored rider and due to SRAM’s recent brake issues has made a last-minute switch to TRP HY/RD brakes with SRAM Red 22 mechanical shifters.

?In order to keep the bike as maintenance-free as possible during his month long trip, all cables have been replaced with full-length housing and zip-ties are used to secure the mod in place. It adds a little weight, but something Nick feels will reduce issues in severe weather.

Pedal choice is another interesting choice, one that we’ve seen a bit of lately. Nick chooses to use Shimano’s older M970 design, claiming they offer greater reliability, these beat-up pedals are a prized possession for him.

Complete bike specifications

  • Frame:?Focus Mares CX Carbon Disc, 58cm (XL)
  • Fork:?Focus Mares Cyclocross Carbon Disc
  • Headset:?Cane Creek integrated, 1 1/8-to-1 1/4in tapered
  • Stem:?Easton EA90, 120mm x +10?
  • Handlebar:?Easton EA70 , 42cm (c-c)
  • Tape:?fi’zi:k bar:tape
  • Front brake:?TRP HY/RD, Shimkano RT98 Ice-Tech 160mm rotor
  • Rear brake:?TRP HY/RD, Shimkano RT98 Ice-Tech 160mm rotor
  • Brake levers:?SRAM Red 22 mechanical Shifter
  • Front derailleur:?SRAM Red 22
  • Rear derailleur:?SRAM Red 22
  • Shift levers:?SRAM Red 22 mechanical Shifter
  • Cassette:?SRAM PG-1170, 11-28T
  • Chain:?SRAM PC1170
  • Crankset:?SRAM Carbon 22 BB30, 175mm, 46/36T
  • Bottom bracket:?Truvativ BB30
  • Pedals:?Shimano XTR M970
  • Rims:?HED Stinger 3 24H front & rear
  • Front hub:?HED Novembre Centerlock 24H
  • Rear hub:?HED Novembre Centerlock 24H
  • Spokes:?Sapim CX-Ray Silver
  • Front tire:?Schwalbe Rocket Ron, 33mm
  • Rear tire:?Schwalbe Rocket Ron, 33mm
  • Saddle:?fi’zi:k Arione k:ium
  • Seatpost:?Easton EA70 Setback 27.2mm
  • Extras: Full length brake and gear housing

Critical measurements

  • Rider’s height:?1.83m (6ft)
  • Rider’s weight:?74kg (162.8lb)
  • Saddle height from BB, c-t:?815mm
  • Saddle setback:?100mm
  • Seat tube length (c-t):?580mm
  • Seat tube length (c-c):?535mm
  • Tip of saddle to center of bar:?590mm
  • Saddle-to-bar drop:?110mm
  • Head tube length:?140mm
  • Top tube length (effective):?571mm
  • Total bicycle weight:?8.17kg (17.97lb)

For more on cyclocross gear – see it here.


Fries, Hanscom named to cyclocross hall of fame

BOULDER, Colo. (BRAIN) — Event organizers Richard Fries and Joan Hanscom were among the inductees into the Woolly Mammoth Society during the USA Cycling cyclocross national championships held here last week

ASI’s Bliss joins USA Cycling’s road committee

COLORADO SPRINGS, CO (BRAIN) — Advanced Sports International’s Karen Bliss is the newest industry representative on USA Cycling’s road committee. Bliss, a former pro road racer, was nominated to the spot by Shebeest national sales manager Dorothy Nichols, who is the industry representative on USA Cycling’s mountain bike committee