Ultracross bike build
Whilst we have headed in one direction with our project cyclo-cross bike, Mark Tearle shows there’s more than one way to have your ‘cross cake and eat it. A pre-loved frame and some canny sourcing, can get you a ‘cross bike for a lot less than you’d think.
I picked up the Cyclocross bug at the end of the summer last year and built my old faithful Cannondale commuter bike into a machine to race on (I basically put knobbly tyres on it)…not entirely suitable of course but it was alright to crash about a muddy field for an hour. However, I now have a new obsession and it is dubbed ULTRACROSS.
ULTRACROSS (UCX) isn’t exactly a new concept – the 3 peaks Cyclo-cross challenge has been doing something similar for over 50 years. I’ll credit my good friend Kris for spotting The Boulder Ultracross from the Endurance Experience Blog and that got us talking and thinking about doing something similar on the South Downs from Eastbourne.
On 30th December 2012 at 9am the inaugural White Chalk Hills UCX ride left Eastbourne – 75 kilometers over chalky Downland, woodland fire roads, muddle bridleway a bit of Strada Bianca with over 3000 meters of climbing, including 3 absolutely pointless ascents and descents of the 3 Bostal roads and chalky paths on the northern escarpment of the South Downs Firle Beacon, Bo Peep Bostal and Long Burgh.
The result of preparing for this ride, the reconnaissance of the route and making sure all was ok took its toll on the old Cannondale – wheel rims beginning to perish, the hubs long past their best…it was beginning to look like I would need to spend some money… (continued on page 2)>