Having finished the tri season it can be a long winter so I opted to try CX racing a little more seriously, which inevitably resulted in buying a new bike, carbon with all the trimmings! This made a massive difference.
I took part in several races throughout the winter, spanning into 2018. The standard is incredibly high, but the camaraderie is fantastic, and I have met so many people through this great sport.
I started my season (on the old bike) at Callander Park then Irvine races, part of the Scottish CX series. It was not the best of starts, but a great workout nonetheless, and I came away inspired to be in the top 10 one day rather than 20 plus!
It was clear I really lacked some of the skills needed for cross, so spent a weekend on a course and learnt from others. However, nothing beats getting out on the bike and I was driven to get as much practise as possible.
By the time January came there were a couple more races left. The first was at Linlithgow, a fantastic ladies only race in a lot of snow. I love this race as it is very encouraging to all standards and has a great workshop before the race. Was happy to take 3rd here in a lovely snowy day, which got worse as the day went on.
The next was Strathclyde Park, one of my favourite races. It suited me, fast and relatively flat, just super muddy. I had a great race, and loved every minute of if and I managed to achieve my goal of a top 10 finish at the CX series.
Cross has been amazing for bike skills and handling, and look forward to doing more at the end of the year. I would recommend it to anyone as a hard session or just to get to learn skills on the bike.