Forum home Mountain biking forum Events, competitions and races XC and Enduro

How to get into racing.

Biffz0idBiffz0id Posts: 123
edited June 2010 in XC and Enduro
Alright guys, just a few questions for all those hardened racers out there! :).

I'm looking to start XC racing. But how do you get into it? Is the best route through cyclo cross? Or to just do fun rides and try and finish well? Also, I'm currently riding an trek ex7 which is a full susser. Is a HT vital? Or will I be able to cope with what I've got?

I live in the Midlands and am prepared to travel, so what competitions would you recomend?

Many thanks,
Henry.

Posts

  • tebteb Posts: 7
    Hey Henry,

    I would advise that to begin with, just enter either the open or sport race categories at the British Mountain Bike Series or Southern/Midlands XC races and see how you do.

    Also local "challenges" or fundraising rides are generally a bit of a race as everyone is trying to finish as fast as possible.

    Its up to you whether you want to try cyclocross, but that season is over now really. In my experience, cyclocross is a one-hour torture episode and might put you off. Don't worry about the bike either, hardtails are in no way necessary and often not the fastest on a given course anyway.
    2009 British Universities Gold Medal, MTB XC
    2009 Brownbacks Series Champion

    LUCC/ Stif Mountain Bikes
  • boneyjoeboneyjoe Posts: 369
    Agree with teb. Start with a couple of events on your current bike, entering the Fun or Open categories and see how you go. If you really enjoy them (and are reasonably quick!), you can take a step up in category, and start upgrading kit, getting fitter etc.

    If you've not raced before, you might find it quite a bit faster and more difficult than you expect. Don't be disheartened though, we all have to start somewhere!
    Scott Scale 20 (for xc racing)
    Gary Fisher HKEK (for commuting)
  • wavey1490wavey1490 Posts: 39
    start with fun or open cat if i were you for your first race, a sport catagory will be very quick over a longer distance, and may not be enjoyable for your first attempt. depending on where your based if its down south then you wont go wrong with entering a gorrick race
    Anorexic Racing Snake ;)
  • Geordie121Geordie121 Posts: 15
    I would love to enter a fun event just to see how i do. Does anyone know of anything like that in the Berkshire area? Don't mean to offend anyone but is the lycra that i often see complusary? lol I don't have any! I've only been riding a few years so i am a bit naive.

    Anyhelp would be great!

    Cheers guys!
  • anton_spbanton_spb Posts: 12
    Geordie121 wrote:
    I would love to enter a fun event just to see how i do. Does anyone know of anything like that in the Berkshire area? Don't mean to offend anyone but is the lycra that i often see complusary? lol I don't have any! I've only been riding a few years so i am a bit naive.

    Anyhelp would be great!

    Cheers guys!

    Hi,

    lycra obviously gives you a comfort. You know... Your shorts dont hook the saddle, no sweat blots on the censored , etc. There are sort of enduro shorts which are not skintight and have a "pampers", so its possible to use those but guys who is seriously involved into xc racing usually wear lycra... in Russia at least =)
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    From Berkshire you should try some of the Gorrick races, although they only run in autumn/winter (usually 3 races) and spring (usually 5 races). They get excellent entry numbers, particularly in the fun and open categories so you'll have loads of people to race against.

    To the OP, from the Midlands I'd try a Midlands XC, IIRC there's one in early August, they come with BC ranking points, which tends to mean they appeal to some of the quicker folk, but don't let that put you off, just to the fun or open categories. You'll be fine on the Ex7, just enjoy yourself. It will be faster than you're expecting, and however quick you think you are, there's always someone quicker!

    Lycra is by no means compulsory.
  • Geordie121Geordie121 Posts: 15
    Hey,

    thanks for the replys guys. Makes a lot more sense now. I'll think about the lycra lol I've looked at the Gorrick website and the Autum classics look good. Think i might go for the open category to see how i do.

    Cheers
  • mozamimozami Posts: 25
    hey
    is there a website or something where we can find out (register?) about xc races etc in our local areas?
  • payneibpayneib Posts: 7
    They way i started off was to do a few British Hart Foundation rides (they're very good at arranging rides) and then did a few Gorricks.

    Just ride what you've got, and how you're most comfortable. You wont be the only one in baggies, and i'm only just trying full lycra now as i think i may have been having gut issues with the tie cord on my baggies crushing me!

    For more info on racing, check www.xcracer.co.uk
  • streakostreako Posts: 2,937
    Most people who try xc racing soon see the benefit of Lycra. Especially bib shorts as they stay up.
    Dont forget you cant stop to lower your saddle on steep descents during a race, which means baggies are far more likely to snag. Also, races tend to get wet, soggy and muddy, which means heavy baggies which flap around and weigh you down.
Sign In or Register to comment.