With Cyclocross season coming up shortly it would be a good idea to brush up on your skills–and going back to basics, 1900’s style, might be a good way to start. Check out this article “Advice For Friends of Cyclocross” by EugÃ¨ne Christophe, printed originally in theÂ Jan 20, 1921 issue ofÂ Le Miroir Des Sports, and reprinted in English by Joel Metz on his website Blackbirdsf.
EugÃ¨ne Christophe won the French Cyclocross Championship six times between 1909-1914, and wrote this primer as a way to educate the cyclist in the handling of their bike, for Cyclocross (to paraphrase) is only dangerous for the clumsy and for the daredevils. Christophe also believed that Cyclocross was an excellent way for roadies to cross-train during the winter season and his advice was to be a sort of “physical education of the cyclist”. So,Â read it, and educate yourself.Â Plus, the photos are fantastic!
By the way, Joel has an extensive collection of early cycling information on his website, including an early history of the Bay City Wheelmen, Paris Courier racing in the late 1800’s early 1900’s, Pre-War Cyclocross, and information on various bikes and bike parts–including Jack Taylor cycles. If you’re in the Portland, OR, area, support Joel by using his messenger service, Magpie Messenger Collective.