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Gravel Time: The Lowell 50

The Lowell 50. Part race, part color tour.

The Lowell 50. Part race, part color tour.

The last gravel race of 2018 is just over a week away, and we didn’t want you to miss it.

We were on hand way, way, way back in March when the Michigan Gravel Race Series kicked off at Melting Mann. It’s hard to say if that feels like just yesterday or a whole lifetime ago; spring, summer, and fall have flown by, but we’ve been able to squeeze in some great rides and a lot of fun memories.

While you can certainly grind all winter, October 27 offers up a decidedly spooky finale to the MGRS at The Lowell 50. With the Rogue 100 replacing the traditional 57 mile course, riders who love the normal route have had to wait a full year since the last time they battled the wind, rolling hills, and tough field the Flat River Class always seems have in store. There’s also a rather testing 34 mile route that, while cutting out some long stretches to the east, still includes nearly all of the punchy hills that start and end the 57 mile route as well. For a race with plenty of farmland, you’ll have to have your climbing legs on at least a few times.

It’s also a great course for a true gravel or cyclocross bike, with riders often switching up their tires based on conditions. Our own Ted Lott says the course was hard and fast to kick off the month of October, so unless things change, normal 35mm tires should be a nice, safe bet for race day. Of course, it also comes down to personal preference; we’ve seen riders on everything from 25mm road tires to the stacked fat bike class on four inch tires, too!

What might be our favorite option is the 47mm WTB Byway. Designed for 650b ‘road plus’ wheels, the 47mm width fits in most all road bikes like the Kona Rove or Sutra, giving you drop bars and road gearing, but a bit more rubber to smooth out rough gravel or to keep a bit of flotation over loose stone or sand. These also offer up just enough tread and sidewall protection to make them rather serviceable on the trails, too, although anything too techy would be more work than pleasure.

Make sure you get your gravel rig in for a quick tune-up and tubeless refresh, and give the Lowell 50 a try! Best of luck to everyone willing to push themselves and enjoy some stunning fall colors in the heat of a chilly fall classic.

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Jump'n'Pump with Bob :: Sunday, September 23

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As had been noted and documented before, our head wrench, Bob Hammond, can shred. His reputation is so stellar that he’s been asked to help instruct a clinic on how to rail the pump track, and your first chance to learn from the master is this Sunday!

LIV Cycling gave Bob the ol’ ring (well, probably a text message first) to see if our guy could help offer up so pointer on jumping and pumping in the dirt. Bob is a long-time BMX and dirt jumper, in addition to being a pretty incredible downhiller, too. He was jazzed to join in, and you can get involved to learn about riding and jumping.

The clinic will go over everything from how to ride berms, smalls jumps, pump tracks, and the basics of getting airborne. No prior experience is needed, but you’re going to want to be comfortable with basic handling skills. Pop on your flat pedals and wear a helmet (duh) and we’ll work you up to being comfortable getting off the ground.

The morning session will be structured to help beginners tackle the basics, while the afternoon session will be designed to offer more experienced riders a bit more instruction for more speed, higher jumps, and the chance to push their limits that little bit further. Proceeds from both sessions will go to help the on-going GR Bike Park rebuild! The GR Bike Park is going to be THE place to use these skills once construction on the second phase, currently in progress, is completed for the season.

For updates on the both sessions, keep an eye on things here. Each session is just $10, with the event taking place this Sunday, September 23, at Rock City BMX.

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CDC's Savor Summer Sale!

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Recently, we made a huge mistake. We looked at a calendar. 

Less than two months, it said. On September 22, the sun will pass the celestial equator, the earth will tilt on its axis, and things will get dark, chilly, and rainy. The Autumnal Equinox is now less than two months away, and with school a month off, summer is feeling like a rather fleeting thing. 

Look, we love fall, and honestly, winter isn't so bad, either. But right now, we really appreciate having a really long evening to ride after work, riding with bare arms and not even having to think about arm warmers or jackets, and with a dry summer, rain hasn't stopped or altered many of our ride plans. Sure, as we get closer to apple cider, Halloween, and night rides we'll be pumped about those things to, but they can take their timing getting here. 

We're trying to savor every ice cream cone, beach day, and hot, sunny bike ride we can this August, and we want to make sure you can, too. Starting right....NOW...you'll find up to 40% off select 2017 and 2018 bikes from Kona and Rocky Mountain. We want you to get the bike you've always dreamed of, then immediately ride the snot out of it while we have the warm temperatures and the daylight to do so. 

Of course, we're going to give you plenty of chances to ride it with us, too. Our weekly Wednesday night Funduro ride is on for August, so make sure you join us from City Built Brewing at 6:30. We're also cooking up another Dirt Church or two, as well as working out some final details for a Labor Day Sabbatical to a destination as yet undetermined. 

There are some sweet rigs on the floor right now, and you can see most of what's in stock right here. Make sure you stop by to everything built-up, as well as for the official sale price for each bike. 

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Bob's Suspension Clinic

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Outside and into the wild! If you loved our winter-long tech and suspension clinics, wait until you actually get to ride bikes at one! On July 12, we're taking the tech talk outside to help more of our customers understand their suspension. Whether you're on a hard tail or full-squish, we want to make sure your ride is dialed in. We'll go over how to make adjustments to both forks and shock, how each adjustments change your ride, and what to look for after a ride to make the right changes. 

You'll be able to hit the pump track as many times as you want, and we'll give you some points. If you're looking to really get things right, it's a great time to book your ShockWiz and suspension service so you can get more information from a longer ride at your favorite trail. 

Suspension clinic is totally free, totally laid-back, and it's going to be a lot of fun, too. 

It's also going to be a really good time to check out the new Norco line-up! We're really excited to offer some hand-picked models and specs that really suit how we like to ride here in West Michigan. Think longer travel, slacker geometries, and tough components that we know hold up really well. 

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Ride It. Love It. Buy It.

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We are finally escaping the 00s. It took a while, but it's happening. 

For too long, mountain bikers were convinced that a hardtail 29er was the only bike for Michigan trails. Sure, we don't have 2,000 foot climbs and the accompanying descent to look forward to. But what we do have is a dozen or so trails that offer a diverse range of terrain, elevation and needs, and more and more riders are realizing that there is more out there than a hardtail with 2.25" tires. 

Don't get us wrong, hardtrails rock. But we live in a time when brands like Kona and Rocky Mountain are making bikes that suit how more and more people ride, and that isn't always in a cross-country race. Full suspension, longer travel, smaller-wheeled and wider-tired bikes open up a different riding experience that puts the focus on fun, on big days, or just going a little but further than you're used to. 

Our demo fleet is hand-picked to help you find a bike that's just a little different than the one you've always ridden. From the XC or all-day ready Kona Hei Hei, the plus-tired Big Honzo, or the longer travel Thunderbolt and Pipeline, trying something new is as simple as picking a trail and see what suspension and volume can do for. 

Maybe the best way to hop in for a demo is by joining us at Dirt Church this Sunday, June 17. We'll have coffee at the shop at 9, then bust out to Richmond to ride no later than 10:15. You put your name on any of the bikes for Sunday right by filling out the demo reservation form here

Get signed up, try something new, and take advantage of our trade-in program this summer. There's tons of time to ride, and some great places to do it, too. 

 

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Dirt Church: Your June Schedule of Services

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We had a blast this past weekend at Maple Hills, so we're going to keep doing the Lord's Work right here in Grand Rapids. 

After a break for Memorial Day and the following weekend, you'll have two chances to join us in praising the gods of dirt, the saints of singletrack, with two new venues to give thanks and praise. First up, join us on June 10 at Wahlfield Trail. It'll work the same as we've just done for Maple Hills; meet at the shop for coffee and breakfast around 8:30, then get rolling around 9:15 to 9:30. We'll work out carpools and caravans, or you can plan to meet us at the trailhead around 10:15. 

These Dirt Church rides are a great chance to try something new, too. We have a selection of Kona and Rocky Mountain bikes to demo, but you do need to call ahead to reserve the bikes. We won't demo any unscheduled bikes on Sundays, because we're trying to keep things laid back and fun. We'll bring the bike to the trailhead for you and even get the pedals, seat height, and suspension dialed in; when you're done, we'll take care of it for you! 

Our demo fleet includes:

Kona Hei Hei
Kona Big Honzo
Kona Process 153

Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt
Rocky Mountain Pipeline

Our second Dirt Church for the month of June will come a week later. We're heading to Richmond Park on June 17, with the same free bike demos, breakfast, and more grilling while we spend the day riding! If there's a little something you'd like specifically, bring it, but we'll have the traditional barbecue fare on offer. 

Sundays are for preserving a sense of reverence, and there's no reverence quite like that of riding bikes in the woods with friends. 

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Your Month In Bike Rides

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We're cooking up some serious fun this May. Here's where you'll find us. 

Central District Cyclery is whipping out some sweet stuff this spring, including two new weekly rides, plus a road trip south to Maple Hill. 

In case you were distracted by the run of Barry-Roubaix, Yankee Springs TT, and Fort Custer, your weeknights are getting a bit more spicy, too. On Wednesdays and Thursdays, you're busy. On Wednesday, we're chasing glory and tacos with our pals at City Built Brewing with the FUNduro. Two timed segments, two transfers, and 100% chance of tacos every Wednesday at 6, rolling from City Built. 

Thursdays, we're staying at the shop with Dirty Thursdays. Some of you hood rats already joined us last week, so you'll get it. If you missed it, don't miss out again. We ride the pump track, make it bigger, weirder, and incrementally more dangerous until it's dark. Interval training, but with beer. It's also a great chance to dial in your suspension, too. 

On May 20, we're taking the show on the road to Maple Hill. We'll carpool from the shop at 9am, or you can meet us down there. Maple Hill is a new trail that was just completed in August of 2017 at Markin Glen Park, just outside of Kalamazoo. We'll do a few loops of the 5.5 mile trail, pick some downhills to shred, and throw a little shrimp on the barbie, too. 

Of course, it's also a great time to help get the trails ready for summer. WMMBA has a number of opportunities to donate a pint of elbow grease to help Luton, Cannonsburg Ski Hill Trail and Ionia Rec get all polished up for the rest of the season. Remember, we'll make a donation to WMMBA every time you buy a mountain bike from us! 

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Do You Even Enduro, Bro?

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Enduro isn't just a lifestyle or a hashtag on Instagram. It's a real way to ride bikes fast, but conveniently, with friends. Let's dive in. 

Starting in May, Thursday nights are dedicated to our FUNduro MTB Series, rolling from City Built Brewing at 6:30. Enduro racing is a series of timed segments with check points that you need to reach in between, but with only so much time to get there. These segments, or stages if you're really into enduro (and you look like you are), are either transfer stages or timed, with your timed stages adding up to a total time, and transfer stages not affecting your total as long as you arrive inside of the allotted time. 

So here's how we'll do it. We BUST from City Built (try to the Fresh Ass Salad when we get back) at 6:30, with 30 minutes transfer time to get to Richmond Park Flow Trail. You can do it pretty easily, it's not that far. Then, we'll do two timed stages, both of the Flow Trail, before meeting up and heading back to City Built, which will count as the final transfer stage. We'll have MAJOR AWARDS for first, second, third and DFL, of course. The winners will live with glory forever, and get a taco from City Built. So, really, pretty good incentive to send it. 

Win once? Good. Twice? Impressive. Win the most this May and you'll be crowned King (or Queen) for the month by hitting all the events! We will not make our King and Queen dance slowly around the bar listening to Endless Love

Looking for a better description of enduro racing, or at least one with a more exotic accent? Watch the video below. 

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Melting Mann 2018: Cold Fun in the Sun!

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Another fun day in Vandalia! This past Saturday, we packed up and headed south for the fifth edition of Melting Mann, the gravel road race that doubles as one heckuva good time. 

Spring Break started early, but instead of short pants and sand, we had on a few layers and gravel in our teeth. Any event scheduled for March in Michigan is a crapshoot, and Melting Mann is seen a bit of everything over the past half decade. We'd call 2018 a bit of a draw; most of the course was dry, but it was dry because it was frozen solid. Temperatures didn't get above freezing until well after the race was over, but hey, it's Michigan; everyone on the line knew how to dress for the cold. 

The race had 35 mile and 24 mile options for racers, plus fat bike categories. It's always so cool to see the different bikes people pick for a race like this, and how some riders feel more comfortable on a fat bike or mountain bike, love a gravel bike, or stick with slicks on a traditional road bike. There's a sense of run-what-you-brung, which is especially cool in these types of weather conditions. We saw everything from brand-spankin' new carbon race bikes to one or two original steel fat bikes with all of nine speeds, and some old school 26ers with v-brakes! 

You can check out all the results from a very fun day right here

Next up, we're planning on earning our Easter dinner with The Dirty Thirty, a new race that will start and finish just a short trip east in Saranac. You can learn more about the race here. If your bike needs some love before Saturday, make sure you get your service scheduled so you don't miss any of the incredible riding weather on offer this week! Finally, Grand Rapids is going to get a sniff of 60 degrees and plenty of sun! 

With plenty of folks on the move for Spring Break, there's no clinic this Thursday, but keep your eyes peeled for a new series coming your way in April! 

 

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March Gravel Goodness: Dirty Thirty and Melting Mann

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Spring means gravel in Grand Rapids, and we've got the best calendar of gravel events in the Midwest! Grinding season starts with Melting Mann and keeps rolling the following weekend with the first annual Dirty Thirty! 

We're as anxious as anyone to get out on the dirt this spring, but with the wicked freeze/thaw cycle in place, gravel roads are the easiest way to explore, get fit, and certainly race this time of the year. Our area has one of the best gravel race scenes around, with events all over West Michigan offering their own unique take on how to make a race tough and fun. Kicking off the local gravel season is Melting Mann. 

Located down in Vandalia, Melting Mann is entering its fifth year. With it's late March time slot, the weather has ranged from idyllic and warm, cold and rain, and downright frigid and snowy! Course conditions this time of year are very dynamic, making tire and gearing selection for the race always a part of the challenge, or part of the fun, depending on how you look at it. 

At over 90% gravel, Melting Mann is as pure a gravel challenge as you'll find in the state. Aside from some asphalt at the start/finish, the roads offer largely fast and smooth roads but a few important rough and technical two-tracks that often serve as the selection points in the 35 mile Long course. 

Melting Mann registration is wide open online, so get yourself signed up right here

If you can't make it on March 25, or if the first race only whetted your appetite, great news. The Dirty Thirty is another chance to get out and put down some power, this time even closer to home in Saranac, only a short drive from Grand Rapids. The race starts and finishes right downtown, heading north in the wide-open, wind-swept farm fields that surround the town. Expect crosswinds to split the field early, and watch for those gaps to open further as the race turns south and hits the hills near the river. 

Both events offer a short course for those who haven't been able to get many miles in this winter, or for folks that just want to see what gravel racing is all about. There really isn't a more accessible type or racing than gravel, and there's no better place to get into it than West Michigan. We are absolutely spoiled for great roads, great rides, and great races throughout the year, and it all gets started in March! 

If you've got questions about these races, gravel riding, or what the best bike for gravel roads might be for you, swing by and we'll show you all the bikes, tires, and more. 

Make sure you follow The Dirty Thirty and Melting Mann on Facebook for the most current weather and course updates, too. 

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Fat Nats Weekend In Grand Rapids

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Trust us, you're busy this weekend. CDC rolls deep into the idea of February with a celebration of all things bike, with trail-talk, great racing, and the perfect weather for what's on tap. 

The Fat Bike National Championships are back in Grand Rapids this weekend with a new venue and the perfect stage for not one, but two days of racing at Cannonsburg Ski Area. This year, we've got plenty of snow and some frigid conditions in the forecast all week that will help make sure the course is snowy, fast, and a ton of fun. 

Things kick off Friday night at Cannonburg with a unique chance to meet MTB legend Dave Wiens. The current IMBA Executive Director will be at the ski hill from 7-9pm to talk about everything from his six consecutive Leadville 100 wins, his work with IMBA, and thoughts about fat bikes, eBikes, and anything else we talk about. It's a great chance to come down and join the West Michigan Mountain Biking Alliance, learn about trail organizations, and get excited for the rest of weekend! 

Saturday is the big day, with Fat Bike National Championships running throughout the morning and into the afternoon. Races start at 9a, 11a, 1p, and 3.30p, with awards throughout the day. The weather this week couldn't be more ideal, with temps in the 20s and some snow in the forecast for Thursday and Friday. Expect perfect conditions for the race! 

You can see who is signed up for what by checking out the current registration list here. 

The fun keeps going Saturday night with live music from The Bootstrap Boys in the Bear Creek Room at Cannonsburg from 7-10pm!

Don't stay up too late, though, because Sunday is just as action-packed. Winter Rush brings you another day of racing at Cannonsburg starting at 11am. Multiple categories and distances to choose from, and all on a course packed in from the previous day. 

You can stay up to speed with Winter Rush at Cannonsburg on the

Registration for Sunday's races is open here. 

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Back to Big M: Snow Church, Part Deux

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With Winter Rush's Big M Fat Bike Race just two weeks away, we're loading up and heading north again this Saturday, January 6 for one final recon of the course. 

The first of one, two, THREE Great Lakes Fat Bike Series events in the Mitten, it's Big M's big debut. The 17 mile lap has a bit of everything; fast flats, big climbs, and stunning scenery. After some heavy snow over the weekend, much of the forest looks like something out of a postcard. The local groomers are hard at it to make sure the course is fast and fun, and we'll be doing everyone a load of good by getting some additional traffic on the trails. 

We'll be meeting at the shop at 9:30 and working out carpool options, packing up, and grabbing any last minute supplies. On the road by ten, we should see the parking lot by noon. Depending on numbers, we may split into two groups, or the more adventurous among us can take off. We'll meet back at the lot at around 2 pm and make a family decision on more riding or more getting-in-the-car. 

There is PLENTY more about the Big M race at winterrush.com. You should also check out GLFBS for more about the whole series, the other Michigan races, and make sure you support the folks who support fat bike racing in your neck of the woods. We'd also love to see some Grand Rapids and Central District colors do well at the Farmhand Fat Bike Race at Cannonsburg on 1/27, and again in February at Polar Roll! 

To stay in the proverbial loop, RSVP on MyFace and let us know if you can make it. That will make carpool coordination a bit easier, and it'll make Mitch feel even cooler. 

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Merry Christmas from CDC!

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We're really thankful for another great year in Grand Rapids, slinging bikes and being a part of an incredible community of cyclists and human beings. 

This is the time of the season where we look back and reflect on another great spring, summer, and fall. We've enjoyed killer riding this year, and with winter in full swing, it's going to be an exciting winter to get us rolling into 2018. 

First, we want to wish anyone and everyone taking on the Festive 500. Rapha and Strava have partnered again to promote this annual challenge, with riders attempting to put in 500km between Christmas Eve and New Year's Day. In July, it's not too tough. Between work, the holidays, and frigid temperatures, it's a monumental task in Michigan. On Instagram and Twitter, watch the #Festive500  to see riders from all over the world stacking up the miles any way they can...including by fat bike here in West Michigan! 

Make sure you take a look at our freshly updated list of events, too! Plan to join us for some fat bike racing, dirt jumping in Louisville, and some memorable trips north between January and July. Which event are you looking forward to the most this winter and spring? Is there anything we need to add to our busy calendar?

Heading into Christmas and New Year's Eve, we'll be closed Sunday and Monday for Christmas Eve and Christmas, as well as for NYE and New Year's Day. Our winter hours are:

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday 10-6
Thursday 10-7
Friday 10-6
Saturday 10-3
Sunday Closed

Stop by, say hello, and let us make sure your Christmas shopping is all set before Sunday! 

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Thanksgiving Week at Central District Cyclery

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Thanksgiving is one of the best holidays because it gives you all morning to ride and work up an appetite. We're very thankful for every single ride we get to enjoy, and every single customer that has supported us since we opened. It's been an incredible year, and we are grateful for each and every one of you. 

We'll be closed Thursday to eat and stay closed Friday to ride it off. Spending time with friends and family is always a treat, and having both days to enjoy are really a treat. We hope you can skip the lines and sales and do something outside. Take a new friend or family member biking! Go for a wintry hike. Whatever you love to do, share it with someone special. If you're lucky enough to have the day off, make sure you do spend it wisely. 

Don't worry, we've got you start on holiday shopping figured out. The crew will be back in action on Small Business Saturday from 10a-5p. And we're making it worth your while to step away from the leftovers and swing by. We're really doing you a favor and letting someone else eat that last slice of pie. 

This Saturday, support local and shop our special of the day. Everything in the store is 10%! Even our "Clearance Conifer", which is already stacked up with clearance items and special deals. Whatever a sale item is listed at, take an additional 10% off, this Saturday only! 

Not sure what to grab that cyclist of yours? That 10% is good for gift cards, too; your $100 gift card is just $90! 

If we don't see you before Thursday, have a fun, safe, and delicious Thanksgiving and a great turkey-burner of a ride after. We appreciate all of our Grand Rapids cycling community, and we can't wait for more adventures. 

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Winter Rush Heads To Big M In 2018!

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People! We admit it, we're getting a little antsy for winter riding. This fall has been an absolute treat, but as the leaves fall and the temperatures take a nosedive, we're looking ahead to January with really good reason. 

This year, we're helping bring the Great Lakes Fat Bike Series to Big M. January 13th, 2018 will bring us to the Manistee National Forest for a great adventure in the woods! Choose from a 17 or 35 mile race with different categories open as well. 

Sure it's a race, but if you've done any amount of fat biking, you know that when you race in the winter, it's always more of an adventure! There will be two aid stations on the course, but in between, it'll be just you, your guts, and your trusty fat bike against the elements! The right set-up, the right tires, and the right attitude are all just as important as strong legs. 

For more information about the race, head here. Check out the full Great Lakes Fat Bike Series schedule and get some races under your belt this winter! 

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Checking In On The Kona Cyclocross Crew

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It's October, and cyclocross season is in full swing not just in Grand Rapids, but all over the US and Europe! 

Kona put the new 2018 Super Jake under two of their most experienced and tough riders, the legendary Helen Wyman and Kerry Werner. The two American World Cups were the high points of September and were big targets for Kona riders. After strong rides, Kerry turned his attention to KMC 'Crit' Fest in Connecticut, while Wyman went across the Atlantic to do what she does best; battle the Belgians on their home turf. 

Helen is doing a very cool series of one-minute videos at her races, which are definitely worth checking out and following on Vimeo.  She gave the new Super Jake its first European podium at Neerpelt in Holland this past weekend, too! 

If that's got you jonesing for some cyclocross action, there's plenty to be had right here in Grand Rapids. The Beer City Growler is the second of the Michigan CX Series on Saturday, October 7, right at Wilcox Park. With a bit of rain in the forecast, it might be a truly Belgian experience for everyone, with the promise of mud, beer, and a lot of fun! 

Sunday, Kisscross is back in action for the second race of the season, this time at Highland Park. Many racers will be taking on both days, with the famous flyover expected to feature at both races. With plenty more racing to come this season, as well as other big tests like Peak2Peak at Crystal Mountain, the Lowell 50, and of course the Iceman Cometh, a double-header weekend is great preparation for the rest of your fall campaign! 

Make sure your bike is in perfect shape, even if you aren't, by getting it in for a tune-up this week, and we'll see you in the mud this Saturday and Sunday! 

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Top Five Hand-Up Foods For Elite, Serious Cyclocross Racers

Cyclocross demands a commitment to training and diet, and that extends past the weeks and months of #crossiscoming right into the very middle of the event. We've selected the important foods and drinks you need to peak, bro. 

First off, if you eat or drink when you're on a bike, that food or drink becomes known as 'nutrition', which is like food but with all the fun sucked out of it. Triathletes loves nutrition, and they're known to stuff it strange places. But they have to, because their shirts don't have pockets. 

Anyway, this 'nutrition' can make or break your day between the tape, so we've picked our top five favorite hand-ups. Take this as the gospel, and make sure they're on your grocery list heading into the weekend. This is especially important, as you'll most likely be performing hand-ups for others before or after your race, and in a shark/lamprey type of symbiotic relationship, you'll rely on others to provide hand-ups for you. Don't let them down. 

1. Pea Soup. Pea soup is a powerhouse food that combines an appealing green color with a refreshing pea flavor that's sure to help you dig deep. Served boiling hot (i.e. scalding) and with some cilantro as garnish, try to splash it in your friend's face early and often so they are properly fueled. Super Soakers work well. 

2. Twinkies. Packed with sugar and other important nutrients like synthetic cream and yellow dye 12,242 the quick-shot energy from a Twinkie is tough to beat. It's also soft, so if the person has to grab the bar in a panic after taking the hand-up, it squashes neatly and poops out its creamy filling. Don't worry, they'll still be able to eat it after they take the next turn, and they'll likely have bits of it in their bar tape for weeks to come. 

3. Veggie Burgers. In today's diet-conscious environment, we suggest ditching the traditional bacon hand-up in favor of a more environmentally alternative. No animal cruelty, a reduced impact on resources, and plenty of flavor options make this a much more green option to protein-rich cyclocross nutrition. Most people like Spicy Black Bean, but you can really stand out from the crowd by going for the Garden Veggie version. 

4. Cookies. Everyone loves cookies. We're not going to even try to joke about this one. Bring cookies. 

5. Boone's Farm Wine Coolers. Look, beer has been done guys. We get it, Hamm's, PBR, all great. I mean, since you can't get a good urine-flavored can of Schlitz in Michigan (can you?) those are solid alternatives. But Boone's Farm goes down like a Kool-Ade and offers a tasteful nostalgia for simpler times. Junior year of high school, some wine coolers, a sunny day, Rebecca...oh she was a good girl...but we're getting away from the topic. (I'll wait for you, Rebecca)

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Put your nutrition and preparation to the test this Sunday at KissCross at Richmond Park. We'll be there. With a cooler. 

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September At Central District Cyclery

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...and all of a sudden, Labor Day Weekend is done and dusted. We're looking ahead to a busy but very fun fall here in West Michigan! There are plenty of cool things going on, and you're going to want to make sure your bike is dialed in and ready to rock. 

Coming up real quick is the first KissCross of the year, and we're setting it up! Our mad scientists are laying out the course at Richmond Park on Sunday, September 17. Racing for fun, racing for beer, and racing for hand-ups starts at 10am with the Kid's Race! 

Just two weeks later, there's a State Championship on the line at Merrill! With the start and finish located just next door at the Art Van Sports Complex, The Michigantuan is September 30. The Short Track race is the following day, October 1! Two days, tons of fun right here in Grand Rapids.

But there's plenty more to look forward to beyond the big races. We've got CX Clinics heading into the race at Richmond, on Thursday, September 7 and on Thursday, September 14. Learn a thing or two, plus have a ton of fun, right at Richmond Park! It's a good way to get a little sneak peek at the actual course, too. 

Stay tuned for some night rides, tune-up specials, and great new tech and gear popping into the shop this month as well. Stop by soon and say hello! 

 

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Kisscross #1 at Richmond Park!

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Cyclocross is almost here! We're excited to bring you the first Kisscross race of the year on September 17 at Richmond Park. 

Kisscross is a darn big deal. The series began with 30 guys and gals, content with someone shouting "Go!" and racing for beer. Over the years, it's grown to include more city and county parks all over West Michigan, with an emphasis on local shops, local businesses, and local racers who just want to have fun. 

There is a full points series over the course of the five race days, starting in September and ending in November. Each stop features a different park, and a different local shop takes on course design. We're excited to highlight Richmond Park in Grand Rapids, and to put on a challenging, unique course that you're going to love. 

Cyclocross is a great way to get into racing. It's fast and intense, but only as intense as you make it. There's no pressure; after a lap or two, most spectators have no idea who is winning or who is last! Most are more focused on food hand-ups, cheering, and simply enjoying the race. And that's easy to do, because cyclocross is by far the best spectator-friendly type of cycling. On a short 1-1.5 mile course, the whole course is easy to see! 

The kid's race starts things off at 10:30, followed by the 30 minute Beginner/Junior race at 11am. The Experts start at noon for a full 60 minutes, with the Sport category capping things off at 1pm. 

We'll have tons of prizes, and the spoils don't always go to the victors! Everyone has a great chance to pick something pretty sweet. 

Check out all things Kisscross right here. 

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Short's Brewing MTB Series: The Michigantuan September 30-October 1

Fall is a busy time for bike racers, but there's one weekend you're going to want to keep wide open! The Short's Brewing MTB Series takes you into autumn proper with two days of racing right here in Grand Rapids with the Michigantuan! 

Join us Saturday, September 30 at the Art Van Sports Complex for the cross-country race. Riders will take on a tough 6 mile loop that includes parts of the Merrell Trail system, as well as a big chunk of the now infamous short track loop. It's a course that demands a strong technical rider that can deal with short, punchy climbs.

Sunday, riders will be back in action for the short track events! There's no more entertaining way to watch a bike race than short track, and Grand Rapids has some of the very best riders in the state in this discipline. Almost all of the action is within sight of the start/finish, and riders can hop in and race twice in a single day, too. 

Short's Brewing is bringing the beer and the fun, with great prizes from Short's and Central District Cyclery. 

You find out more about the race here, plus get yourself signed up for race day through USA Cycling. 

 

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