Part sandlot, part support group, all cross. For a few years now an informal cyclocross practice has taken place out on Randall’s Island (in the East River between upper Manhattan and Queens) not only to develop riders’ cyclocross-specific skills but to bring the small, dedicated community of NYC CX racers together each week. As the sport has exploded in popularity on national and local levels, so has the practice. What was once just a few die-hards meeting up on a weeknight has become a scheduled, technical class with multiple levels of experience.
I (Evan Murphy) have, for better or worse, become the practice’s designated keeper of the cones. I also come up with the drills, and herd the cats. While I’m not certified by any means, I like to think by simply keeping everyone on task, I’m encouraging individual growth, as well as showing people out there interested in ‘cross that, hey, there’s this really rad group of people in this city who love this sport.
For those who might want a more structured (and sanctioned) class, Tara Parsons runs a beginner class through CRCA.org on Wednesday mornings, and I highly recommend those who might need a little more 1-on-1 or novice skill-building check out what she’s got going.
If you’re interested, the practice starts at 7p every Wednesday on the north side of the soccer fields (which are on the south-eastern side of the island, towards Queens). Please bring water, a snack, a bike, helmet, lights and a solidly stoked attitude.