Saturday, August 20, 2011


The Gravel Worlds Championship Jersey up for Grabs In Lincoln, Nebraska Today

There's a great article on Cyclocross Magazine's Website right now about the Gravel Worlds Championships going on this weekend in some godforsaken place called Nebraska. It's really worth the read. If you're a gravel road riding idiot like me, and my guess if you're reading this you are, you'll appreciate it - and start getting some crazy ideas of your own. Author  David Boener writes an nice story, but you'll see from the start he not telling us anything that a Crazy Bastard Cross Member (Cross Member that holds nothing up) knows already.

Story excerpts with tasteless Crazy Bastard Commentary:

"It’s the perfect time to head out on the dirt roads and escape the hub-bub while working on your off-road skills via ’cross bike, and most of us have the fitness at this point to make our rides into epic adventures. "

CB: Yeah, adventures like some damn dog chasing you down the road that looks like this and chewing your Sidi's off:

"More and more events, sanctioned or otherwise, outside of the race scene are just begging for cyclocross bikes, and we’re stoked to see it. Events like the dirt gran fondo and dirt randonneur rides gaining traction have a future. Tomorrow Lincoln, Nebraska, brings us the “Gravel World Championship!”
CB: You'll notice here and everywhere else in the article that every dirt road race on the planet is mentioned except for those in Michigan. No Barry Roubaix or Washetenaw Whatever That Race is called get a jot. Of course as a Michigander you should expect this kind of national neglect by now. Harden' the F' up, okay?

(The above video has nothing to do with World Championship Gravel Story. I just put it here in case you were feeling sorry for yourself today for not being there, or being here.)

David Boener's Cyclocross Magazine's story continues with more inappropriate CB Commentary:

"I’m growing more and more fascinated with the Midwest every time I hear about “gravel grinders” – self-supported, unsanctioned ultra-endurance “races” on gravel farm roads in the Heartland."
CB: Do we  hear  faint note of smugness here? Maybe I'm being too sensitive. That's what being from the Midwest, and Heartland gets you. We're all having some serious low self-esteem issues that makes us think low-self esteem "gee I'm a loser but I'm cool" driven propaganda like this is a good thing: 

(Again the above video has nothing to do with the story. I just put it here to make some obtuse point I'm sure no one will get.)
Now, more Gravel Worlds goodness:

"Growing up in Colorado, we always thought of the Midwest as “flat,” and “boring.” But when I read the reports from races like the Dirty Kanza 200 and the Trans-Iowa, the Great Plains transforms in my imagination into an endless ocean of hulking rollers scored by thin ribbons of anonymous gravel pathways that go on infinitely."
CB: Sound like the way the Hobbits thought about the Misty Mountains growing up in the Shire. I didn't know people in Colorado ever thought about the Midwest at all. I can't blame him for thinking it's boring, though, living in Colorado.
"And now there’s one more reason to head to the heartland: The Gravel World Championship this Saturday, August 20th, in Lincoln, Nebraska."
CB: The only reason I'd go to Nebraska is for this race, which sounds wicked. I just missed the "one more reason" part. Like there's another reason to go to Lincoln? I don't think so.
"It’s a fully self-supported, wholly unsanctioned, “ride” (wink, wink), at the end of which the first finisher will put on a world champion jersey. The course is a 150ish-mile loop around Lincoln that includes “maybe four miles of pavement,” according to Pirate Cycling League member and participant Malcolm Tassi. Everything else is either groomed gravel roads or Minimum Maintenance Roads – forgotten double-track wagon trails that turn into nearly-impassable mud bogs if it rains."
CB: As a Crazy Bastard I'm all over this wink-wink shit. I think we should put it on our jerseys. If we had any.
"There are several checkpoints along the way, but each racer is responsible for his or her own navigation. The only documentation is a handful of Powerball tickets purchased at gas stations along the route. Like all Pirate Cycling League events, Gravel Worlds is free."
CB: POWERBALL TICKETS! Are you fucking kidding! Why isn't this race in Michigan? Our economy is totally based on the sale of PowerBall Tickets. Awesome! The FREE part will also appeal to our Dutch brothers. I sure a couple of you are riding or hitch hiking to Nebraska today - IT'S FREEEEE!

“The ‘world championship’ thing is sort of tongue-in-cheek,” admits Corey “Cornbread” Godfrey, the event’s founder and a Midwest endurance racing legend ...

CB: Huh?

" was only a matter of time before someone called their gravel race the world championship, so we figured we might as well."

CB: I gotta admit, the guy's got something there. He won't be driving a Chrysler through a junkyard anytime soon.

“I have no idea how it’s perceived elsewhere,” Godfrey said. “We’re kind of isolated out here. We don’t have the mountains. We don’t have particularly good road riding. So we learned to embrace what we have. And what we do have is miles and miles of endless gravel roads. You get to see part of the country that no one gets to see. Lincoln looks like shit from the Interstate. But it’s actually a really cool town. Same with Nebraska. Nebraska looks cool from the little gravel roads.”
CB: Make sure you check the whole story out on Cyclocross Magazine. And let's plan on a road trip next year. I love places that look shit from the highway!

Good luck to all of you racing this weekend! See you Tuesday.

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