Matt Porter, a Wahooligan from our Atlanta headquarters, and his wife, Sandefur, headed to Asheville, North Carolina to represent Wahoo at Cyclocross Nationals. Our newest sponsored Wahooligan, Jeremy Powers, made it an even more epic weekend as he won the Men’s Elite race defending his 2015 title.
Take a peek into Matt and Sandefur’s weekend:
We traveled to Asheville the second week in January to watch the Cyclocross National Championship Race. A few weeks ago, we watched another cyclocross race at Grant Park in Atlanta (Grant Park Cup) where we watched hundreds of people complete the run-up, drink beer, eat bacon, and barf along.
My wife said, “Cyclocross-maybe I can do this.” She’s completed 2 marathons, the second one, merely minutes from qualifying for Boston… a dream for any marathoner. She likes to run. She also grew up riding road bikes with her family. Completing hundreds of miles in one week when she was only 10 and 11 years old. She likes bikes. And here, at Grant Park, there were hundreds of people drinking beer at 10 in the morning while both running and riding. She also likes beer.
There we were in Asheville, where we observed the best in the country compete. We saw kids who were 10 years old and even younger shredding it all the way to Jeremy Powers winning the National Title.
As we looked back at all the photos from the weekend, we recognized how epic cyclocross really is. It’s a time to push yourself both physically and emotionally. It’s not just running on pavement on a sunny day. It’s riding your bicycle in the mud, faster than anyone else in your category. It’s about bicycle handling so you don’t seriously injure yourself and so you can make it on that tight switchback where the biggest crowd is watching. If you get off and run at this point, all you will hear is a roaring “BOOOOO!” from the spectators… and they mean it!
It’s about the cold weather, the snow flurries, the mud that gets in your eyes, and not to mention the mud that gets in your mouth, in your socks, and your tight fitting pants.
You spend all weekend or all week at a race and those spectators become family. You see them around, you share a beer, and you meet their dogs. The riders might compete in multiple categories, so you see them several times. You at least creep on them while they pre-ride the course – like any good fans would do.
Asheville brought an epic race. Jeremy Powers successfully defended his title of National Champion. But, this past week was also for all of the up-and-coming racers who are going to help continue to build cyclocross in the U.S. It’s for the little boy on the red bike that wouldn’t stop. It’s for the girls that are more hardcore than the boys they go to school with. It’s for the moms who were yelling louder than any soccer mom, “Don’t pull that guy any longer!”
All this to say that
Cyclocross is Epic.
It’s more than just riding your bike through some mud. It requires passion, motivation, hard work, and dedication and we love seeing Wahooligans with this kind of drive. Tell us what you love most about your sport (whether it’s cyclocross or not) in a comment below!