Are you still searching for that perfect last minute gift for that special cyclocross rider in your life or for yourself? Look no further than Jeremy Powers Cross Camp. This instructional video was shot in the same style as the popular Behind The Barriers series that follows Jeremy and his Ralpha Focus teammates racing cyclocross around the world. The difference is instead of watching Jeremy battle it out with Ryan Trebon, Tim Johnson and the Euro pros the 2012 US National Champion is teaching YOU how to be a better cyclocross racer.
For anyone who has either dipped their toe or jumped head first into cyclocross you know that cyclocross demands skills that cannot be gained from either road racing or mountain bike racing. Watching the pro cyclocross racers dance with their bikes through all kinds of conditions and obstacles is like watching the perfect choreographed play in football. It’s a thing of beauty that when everything goes right, looks easy. However, from personal experience I can attest it’s not easy!!
Hit the jump to see some awesome shots of Jeremy railing an off camber turn, doing a proper cross remount without sacrificing the family jewels and a bike exchange and more details about the video…
The video begins with an adrenaline filled scene from Jeremy Powers national championship race last January. Then moves into Cyclocross 101 with Jeremy describing what to pack in your race bag for a given weekend. He gives a complete run down on what types of clothing to bring and even describes what he would wear for both racing and course reconnaissance at several different temperatures. This information helps to make sense of all the options out there when it comes to cycling clothing. While the perfect clothing setup is a personal preference this section helps you get started finding what items work for you. With cyclocross being held in late fall and winter in most of the country, having the proper clothing is essential to not only performance, but comfort on the bike as well. While discussing gear Jeremy also throws in little helpful hints like remembering to bring an extra set of cleats in your race bag or an extra set of toe spikes. Both small things, but if we are honest with ourselves we have all been there scrambling around before a race looking to borrow gear because you either forgot or lost something on the way to a race.
Next, Jeremy goes over the nuts and bolts of disassembling your bike and packing it for travel. Having packed many bikes for myself and clients during the past few seasons there is a right and wrong way to do this! Nothing will ruin your day like arriving for a race and finding something broken as a result of a sloppy packing job. Take the time and do it right because everything you do helps keep your bikes safe from the airlines and shipping companies.
The video continues with Jeremy giving in depth instructions on topics ranging from nutrition, pre race routine, tire selection and pressure, to how to do a bike exchanges in the pits. He even weighs in on the age old question of which is better, tubulars or clinchers? There are even some slow motion shots of what a tubular tire looks like in a turn at various air pressures. With your tires being the only suspension you have on a cyclocross bike having the proper tire pressure is essential to both your comfort and the tire having the largest, most efficient contact patch possible. All topics designed to help YOU refine your cyclocross game and become a better cross racer.
Jeremy using a rut to rail an off camber section.
Jeremy demonstrating the proper technique for remounting the bike after clearing the barriers without sacrificing the family jewels.
Poetry in motion, Jeremy demonstrates a bike exchange with his mechanics.
Jeremy is not the first person to make an instructional video for cyclocross, but his easy going style and willingness to share his hard earned experience make this video very informative plus entertaining. Some more seasoned cyclocross racers may be disappointed by only a mention of how to ride a sand pit and the omission of how to deal with mud. However, that keeps the door open for a more advanced version of this video in the future. There are many small tips scattered throughout the video that will help everyone from the seasoned cyclocross racer to the cyclocross stars of tomorrow who are just trying to make sense of the crazy circus called cyclocross. One shining example of these tips is having good communication with your mechanics. These guys are the behind the scenes crew that can help make or break your race and should always be remembered after the race at dinner.
Having raced cyclocross for the last few years I can definitely say I learned a few things from this video as well and can’t wait to try some of the techniques in the upcoming local races. I give it two enthusiastic thumbs up and look forward to the advanced 102 version next season.
You can purchase Jeremy Powers Cross Camp via Itunes, Amazon, digital download and DVD. The digital download will set you back $15, the DVD $25 or $35 for both. All well worth the price and even though you may never challenge Jeremy for the national championship the techniques discussed in the video will help you enjoy the sport of cyclocross more.