The South London Late Summer Cyclo Cross League is a series of Wednesday evening events coming just before the traditional season of weekend cyclo cross races kicks off. These events act as a warmup into the season for regular riders, as well as an excellent introduction for novice riders. Races are split into age catagories, and ability categories.
Events run by local clubs
29/8/2012 – Bethlem Royal Hospital Hosted by Addiscombe CC
05/9/2012 – Herne Hill Velodrome Hosted by ViCiOUS VELO
12/9/2012 – Bethlem Royal Hospital Hosted by Bigfoot Go-Ride & Penge CC
19/9/2012 – Herne Hill Velodrome Hosted by Dulwich Paragon
Coordinated by VC Londres
Full race details (including slightly revised times) below
Week 1 – 29/8/2012 – Bethlem Royal Hospital Hosted by Addiscombe CC
Results here, photos here. A great first round, it rained before then race so some parts were squelchy under tire, but the course rides very well. Loads of positive comments about the new Bethlam course from new and regular riders alike. Few things we’re considering adjusting for next week – see the Facebook page for updates.
Week 2 – 05/9/2012 – Herne Hill Velodrome Hosted by ViCiOUS VELO
Results here, photos here. Lovely warm, sunny evening. Massive number of riders in each category, almost as many as we’d except on a weekend, let along on a weeknight after work. The course coped well with an extra starting loop, and riders got to grips with Herne Hill’s new “Primus Steps”.
Week 3 – 12/9/2012 – Bethlam Royal Hospital Hosted by Penge CC/Bigfoot Go Ride
Provisional results: senior, youth and U12s. Photos here. Threatening weather, which finally poured down as the volunteers were packing away the course. The second race on the brand new Bethalm course, with a few tweaks from last time and some lighting to guide riders through the gloomiest parts of the woods. Loads of kids riding some of their first races, and plenty of first time adults too, sharing the course with best riders in the South East!
|Race||Start Time||Race Length||Cost|
|Under 16s (youths)||18:15||25 mins||£3|
|Senior Novices||18:40||45 mins(ish)||£8|
New for 2012 we are unveiling a new venue, never before used for bike racing. The Bethlam hospital has some fantastic grounds; a mixture of twisty woodland tracks, wide open fields and fast flowing paths. In June, volunteers from the cyclo cross community were down there cutting bushes, clearing paths and re-sculpting the lumps and bumps. More info on the facebook event page
Not to miss out, our regular venue at Herne Hill Velodrome is ever evolving. For 2012, and acknowledging riders demand for more fun features, we have added steps into the off-road course and extended the sandpit (with rumors of more by the end of the cross season in 2013).
- Bethlem Royal Hospital, Monks Orchard Road, Beckenham, BR3 3BX.
- Herne Hill Velodrome, Burbage Road, Southwark, SE24 9HE
Prizes from our sponsors
We have some great prizes up for grabs, and not just for the first people across the finish line. We’ll be looking out to reward the performances of novice and other commendable riders in lots of catagories.
Novices: What to expect
Never raced before? Don’t worry – cyclo cross is probably the easiest discipline of cycling to get into. There are no big pelotons to keep up with, everyone starts together but, soon spread out and have their own battles within the race.
You can use pretty much any bike to compete, as long as it is generally roadworthy, has two brakes, and we recommend some degree of knobbly tires, especially in wet conditions. Many racers will be on specific cyclo-cross bikes (mostly like a road racing bike with knobbly tires and different brakes), but plenty of people use mountainbikes. Helmets are compulsory, gloves are a good idea, and remember you’ll work up a sweat during the race, so take off a layer after your warm up.
The courses are designed to be fun and fast. They often have a few technical challenges along the way, but nothing too off-putting. You won’t be seeing drop-offs, rock gardens long hills, or (non-rollable) jumps in a cyclo course. For some obstacles, such as steep banks or planks most riders will have to dismount and push their bikes, with only the best riders managing to traverse them on their bikes – there’s no shame in jumping off!
General preparation for the race; check your bike is working before leaving for the race, and aim to arrive in plenty of time. Register at the sign on desk, and pin your number to your back. Make sure you put it on neatly, or get someone to help – if the judges can’t see your number, you won’t be placed! Depending on time, try to get a few warm up laps in, not only to check your bike, but also get your body ready for racing, and check out the course. Don’t forget to give your number back after the race – prizes will be presented shortly after the race. Full results will be posted up on this page.