The UCI shut down 4x because it was TOO similar to BMX, and lets face it, even though I personally didn't want to see it go, they were right. At what point is XC to similar to road racing?
I very rarely race XC in the uk (last one was 2007). When I was out in Whistler I raced XC pretty much every week and it was brilliant. I genuinely enjoyed it. Why not here?
I read this article by Todd Hellinga and it really hit home. http://nsmb.com/amateur-scapegoat/
Sport need heros....... with no risk theres no heros......If the EWS is dumbed down I believe rather than encouraging new people to get stuck in, skill up and get better, it will turn people away.
Im all for entry to the sport and competition and if we want to grow the sport we need race formats which are accessible. There is a point however when inclusivity pips the other way and excludes the higher skilled riders.
This made me think about XC in the Uk and why I never do it.
Its difficult to explain but here it goes... It was boring.
Road riding I think of as being deep into yourself. Its you your mental strength determination and your ability to push through the pain - the focus is on you and what your doing.
Mountain Biking I think of as being much more external. Alot of the mental strength is less about enduring pain and more about emotion, holding focus, processing information and staying calm under pressure.
When MTB tracks are not technically engaging, advanced riders can actually lose what they love about mountain biking. They may as well be on a road bike.
Fortunately World Cup XC appears to have become alot more challenging in recent years and riders like Nino Schurtner are making the sport cool again. If things keep going in the direction, XC will be cool again. This a good thing.
XC is a good thing.
I was stoked to find British Cycling have also moved into grading their races, only to find this had nothing to do with technicality and was just effort and endurance. Boooooo
When XC tracks are technically demanding enough to require dropper posts because the "range" benefits outweigh the weight penalty. I may well get stuck into some XC racing!
If you had a local technically engaging XC race would you take part?