We are fortunate to have a strong cyclocross scene here in Utah run by the fine folks over at UTCX. Those races start up on October 6th this year up in Ogden. Although suffering on a cyclocross bike may not seem like much of a break from working hard on a road bike, it does offer an interesting change of pace from the road scene and a chance to incorporate some running into my cycling efforts. I believe in keeping all energy levels firing to some degree throughout the year, and cyclocross is the perfect way to exercise your top-end when your head needs a break from the road bike efforts.
For the most part, competitive cycling in the United States is an activity and profession for the privileged. Many of my peers in the domestic peloton have college degrees and are pursuing their sporting passion before settling down and getting a ‘real’ job. In other parts of the world, cycling often plays a much more prominent and essential part of people’s lives. I’ve been fortunate to be a part of a truly international roster at Jamis/Sutter Home Pro Cycling Team and have heard firsthand some of the remarkable feats athletes go through to be a part of our beautiful sport. I wanted to share one of my teammates’ stories this month in my journal to give you an insight into cycling from a different perspective.
As you watch the Tour de France this summer, take a look on the side of the roads in the middle of the stages out in the countryside. If you ask them about the Tour, most French folk will tell you about their experience having a picnic under a tree beside the Tour route waiting for the day’s stage to pass by while listening to it unfold on the radio.
To me, the primary purpose of the bicycle is transportation, in its purest, cleanest, and most efficient form. Through the sport of cycling, we get to pedal great distances through cities, and over mountains, winning the battle against gravity and resistance. However, my profession as a professional cyclist is ironically one of the most difficult to commute to by bike.
This Saturday, July 14, 2012, a collection of riders from cycling’s different disciplines will test each other as they climb and descend craggy, volcanic mountains in southwestern Utah. In its second year, the Crusher in the Tushar’s terrain with altitude reaching nearly 11,000 feet delivers a daunting race only a few can hope to win. One of them is Tyler Wren, a Salt Lake City resident, professional cyclist, and last year’s winner.