Category Archives: Trail Rides

Jingle Cross

 

The temps have dipped a little lower this week and it’s beginning to feel a lot like fall. These mild temps are perfect for enjoying all kinds of riding and that’s what’s offered up this weekend. From road to cross to gravel, you’re covered. Check the listings below for options.

Events:

Jingle Cross – The second weekend of World Cup Cyclo-cross racing in the Midwest is Jingle Cross in Iowa City. Don’t be confused by the name, it was once held Thanksgiving weekend, but with riders from around the world coming to the Midwest for Trek CX, they moved up the race to make it worth their while for the travel. Don’t miss all the excitement as riders battle it out on the course and on the fan favorite Mt. Krumpit. For more information, click here.

Fall Fling Continues – The series continues with a brand new criterium course on Saturday in Geneva. The course features straight-aways, corners and curves, in a loop that’s just shy of a mile! Sunday is the time trial in Maple Park. It’s a 9.5 mile course with two 180 degree turnarounds. For more information, click here.

ILL Kanza – Ready for another gravel adventure? Head to Kansas, Illinois on Saturday. You can choose from ride distances of 22 to 72 miles of gravel, rolling hills and scenic wooded areas. For more information, click here.

Half Acre’s CX Eliminator – Held at Big Marsh Bike Park, this race begins with a non-elimination race for each group, which sets up the seeding for rounds of elimination heats. It’ll be a lighthearted, but competitive event. They’ll also have Specialized demo bikes a Taco Truck and more! For more information, click here.

Apple Cider Century – Head out to Three Oaks, Michigan on Sunday for one of the Midwest’s largest cycling events. There are seven ride routes between 15 and 100 miles, with opportunities to add on or shorten along the way. Upon completion of the event, enjoy apple cider and a pasta dinner. For more information, click here.

Coming Up:

Mongo Cross – If you’re looking for a great course with a local feel, head to McNaughton Park in Pekin. For more information, click here.

Pumpkin Cross – Looking for the complete fall festival? Head out to Lime Kiln Park in Grafton, Wisconsin. The course includes a big climb, a slalom descent, gravel and more. For post-race fun there’s a food truck, music, beer and of course, pumpkins. For more information, click here.

Chicross Cup Event #3 –This week the race series heads to the Dan Ryan Woods on the city’s south side. This city park has several natural features that provide technical and challenging aspects on the course. For more information, click here.

Al Stern Marathon Road Race – If you’re looking to build miles in the late season, head to Aroma Park next Sunday. It’s a mostly flat 10.9 mile loop which will be used to cover distances of 54.5 to 119.9 miles, depending on your category. For more information, click here.

Have a great weekend.

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Filed under #optoutside, Bike Racing, Chicago Cycling, criterium racing, Cycling, Cyclocross Racing, Trail Rides

Palos Meltdown

 

With so much to do, the summer is keeping us busy and time is flying by. This first weekend of August brings us plenty of options for cycling. Whether you choose to hit the trails or stay on the road, there’s a lot of fun ahead and there’ll be plenty of sunshine and warm temps.

Events:

Women’s Dirt Days – It’s event #3 in this summer mountain bike series. This one is timed perfectly for a Palos Meltdown preview. Whether you’re new to the sport or a seasoned veteran, these events are great at accommodating everyone and making the experience fun. For more information, click here.

Palos Meltdown – It’s two days of events at Palos. Saturday they’ll have demo rides, a women’s clinic, course pre-rides and a festival. Sunday is the main event and the course features a little of everything; climbing, technical single track and some open space. For more information, click here.

Adam Hartwig Memorial Road Race – This is a new Wisconsin road race. The course is an eleven mile loop with an average grade of 5.6 percent and several corners. The race is just north of Milwaukee, so it’s just a couple hours drive for some challenging and technical road racing. For more information, click here.

Brian Akers Memorial Time Trial – This time trial is a flat a19K course with sweeping corners to help you keep your speed. If you’re looking for a fast course, this event is perfect for you. For more information, click here.

Two Rivers ABR Road Race Championship – This is a flat road race course. What it lacks in elevation, it makes up for in challenging cross winds. It’s just a short drive south to Aroma Park. For more information, click here.

Track Cycling:

ABR National Track Championships – It’ll be a full day of track racing at Kenosha’s Washington Park Velodrome with mass start, team and individual events. It all happens on Saturday. Registration begins at 8am and racing begins at 9am. For more information, click here.

Illinois State Keirin Championships – It’ll be an exciting night for the Sprinters on Thursday with the Illinois State Championship keirin event. This is an event where the riders are brought up to speed following a motorcycle and with a lap and a half remaining, the motor pulls off and the race to the line begins. For more information, click here.

Coming Up:

WoMo Ride – This month’s ride will be led by the ladies on the BFF Racing team. The ride will depart from the Rapha Clubhouse at 7:30am and make a stop at Pratt and Ridge at 8am. The no-drop ride will head north to Highland Park. On the way home, there may be a more spirited pace option. For more information, click here.

Project Echelon Omnium – Road season continues with this triple event weekend. The two day event includes a time trial, circuit race and criterium. You can go for the overall omnium or race each event individually. For more information, click here.

Illinois State Time Trial – It’s the perfect course for speed in this race of truths. Located in Tolano, just south of Champaign, this course is flat and the pavement is smooth with only one real turn. For more information, click here.

Little Apple 100 – It’s a new gravel race and it’s close to home. Head south to Manhattan for this gravel-fest. You can choose from either a 50K or 100K. For more information, click here.

Wood Dale Criterium – If you’ve been a racer in Chicago for any length of time, you’ve probably made your way over to this course in Wood Dale. The loop has only one real corner, so it’s not too technical. If you’re looking to keep your road season going, don’t miss out. For more information, click here.

Have a good weekend!

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Filed under #optoutside, Bike Racing, Chicago Cycling, criterium racing, Cycling, Gravel Racing, mountain biking, Road Racing, Time Trials, Track Cycling, Trail Rides, Women's Events

Glencoe Grand Prix

The heat has subsided today, but only in terms of the temperature. The racing scene in our area will be scorching hot this weekend with the Glencoe Grand Prix on Saturday and the Cobb Park Criterium on Sunday. This weekend also offers up some off-road with Dirt Days or time trialing with the Bong and a Half. Take your pick and head out the door. Check the listing below for details.

Events:

Women’s Dirt Day’s #1 – In its 9th year, the Women’s Dirt Day’s series offers women of all abilities a chance to come together and hit the trails. The first stop is Kettle Moraine. Meet at the John Muir Mountain Bike Trailhead to start the adventure. For more information, click here.

Glencoe Grand Prix – This has become the premier cycling event in Illinois. The race attracts riders from around the country and the course is technical and challenging. Make plans to come out tomorrow to race and then stick around for the food and music. For more information, click here.

Cobb Park Criterium – There probably isn’t a course in Illinois with more history of famous riders racing on it than Cobb Park. The course is flat and has a few technical sections, making it a crit riders dream. Make it a two-for weekend and complete your weekend with Cobb Park. For more information, click here.

Bong and a Half 30K TT – The second in this time trial series is a loop and a half around the Bong Recreational Center. It’s a rolling course with all right turns. For more information, click here.

Track Cycling:

Ladies Night at Washington Park – This Tuesday is Ladies night at the velodrome in Kenosha. Women will be competing for larger payouts and some cool giveaways. For race information, click here.

2018 Illinois Master’s Championships – Calling all master’s track racers. Nationals are just over a month away and the state championships are the first stop in your season goals. For more information, click here.

Coming Up:

WoMO Ride – Join the ladies again on June 9th for the next edition of the WoMo ride. The ride will depart from the Rapha Clubhouse Chicago at 7:30am and head north to Highland Park. This is a no-drop ride, but at the turnaround, the group may split to offer a more spirited ride back to the city.

Menomonee Falls Crit – This Wisconsin crit is located near Milwaukee, so it’s not too far. The course is located in a park and the race winds around the perimeter with only one technical corner. For more information, click here.

BTR Park Criterium – For a change of pace, another option would be to head to Kalamazoo, Michigan. The course is a 1.1 mile loop which includes three 90 degree turns and a few sweepers. If you’re looking for something fast and new, give this a try. For more information, click here.

Plan Ahead :

Tour of America’s Dairyland – Get ready for eleven days of racing throughout Wisconsin beginning on June 21st. This event features great courses that racers have come to know and love. The competition will be fast and furious, so be sure to take part in some or all of the action. For more information, click here.

Have a great weekend!

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Memorial Day Weekend

The unofficial start to summer begins this weekend with the Memorial Day holiday. We’ve been blessed with real summertime temperatures, which are well deserved after a long stretch of cold. Get out, enjoy yourself and ride your bike! Check the listings below for options.

Events:

ABD Master’s Memorial Day Race Series – If you can participate in master’s category races, you can stay close to home and get in three solid days of racing. This series is typically held in Wood Dale, but this year the races will be held on another familiar course in West Chicago. For more information, click here.

Quad Cities Memorial Day Races – It’s four days of hot competition and great cycling courses in the quad cities area. These races have been around for a long time and as a Midwesterner, they are a rite of passage. The racing begins today with the Burlington road race. Saturday is the infamous Snake Alley criterium, which is highlighted by the twisty cobble climb. Sunday is the Melon City criterium, which is more of a hilly circuit course with a speed bump at the bottom of the descent. The weekend wraps up on Monday with the Quad Cities Criterium (now called the Kwik Star Criterium). For more information, click here.

Palmyra Road Race – It’s another road race in Palmyra, Wisconsin. It’s a place where country roads still exist and they’re quite scenic as well. Head north and get your fill of road racing! For race information, click here.

WoMo Ride – Memorial Day Edition – Looking for a group ride on Monday? Join the WoMo ride, which will depart from the Rapha Clubhouse Chicago at 7:30am and head north to Highland Park. For more information, click here.

Bike the Drive – If you’re looking for something a little calmer than racing, and if you’d love the opportunity to ride on Chicago’s Lakeshore Drive, this event is perfect for you. It’s the Active Transportation Alliance’s biggest event and proceeds go to improving our access safe paths and roadways for our active lifestyles. For more information, click here.

Track Cycling:

Sprinters Dream Omnium Event #1 – There aren’t too many opportunities to fine tune your match sprint skills, but this three event series is designed to help. The day starts out with a 200 meter qualifier and then based on your time, you are matched up with others for the sprint tournament. Get your cat and mouse game on and be there! The first event is scheduled for tomorrow. For more information, click here.

Coming Up:

Women’s Dirt Day’s #1 – In its 9th year, the Women’s Dirt Day’s series offer women of all abilities a chance to come together and hit the trails. The first stop is Kettle Moraine. Meet at the John Muir Mountain Bike Trailhead. For more information, click here.

Glencoe Grand Prix – This has become the premier cycling event in Illinois. The race attracts riders from around the country and the course is technical and challenging. Make plans to race and then stick around for the food and music. For more information, click here.

Cobb Park Criterium – There probably isn’t a course in Illinois with more history of famous riders racing on it than Cobb Park. The course is flat and has a few technical sections, making it a crit riders dream. For more information, click here.

Bong and a Half 30K TT – The second in this time trial series is a loop and a half around the Bong Recreational Center. It’s a rolling course with all right turns. For more information, click here.

Have a safe and fun holiday weekend!

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Fox River Omnium

There’s not much drafting in climbing, so your motto this weekend may be to hang on! That is, unless you plan on using your pedaling power to charge up the hills and build on the excitement at the Fox River Grove Omnium. Whether you hit the hills or stay where it’s flat, there’s plenty of action nearby. Check the listings below for options.

Events:

Fox River Omnium – This two day omnium features races that will challenge your skill and strength. Race information can be found here.

  • Elgin Cycling Classic – This race loops around a neighborhood and features flat and graded sections as well as a somewhat technical downhill/uphill chicane combo.
  • Fox River Grove – This race is all about climbing and descending. It’ll challenge your fitness and skills.

LAPT Road Race – This is a relatively forgiving road race course. It’s a 7 mile loop with rolling hills, but nothing too steep or long. The race is located in Palmyra, Wisconsin, so it’s not too far away. For more information, click here.

Kankakee 20K Time Trial – This out and back course covers mostly flat country roads, with the biggest climb coming at an overpass. It’s a great course for hammering out a strong effort. For more information, click here.

Great Dane Velo Club Spring Crit – Looking for some speed? Head to the Madison International Speedway for a fast, non-technical race course. For more information, click here.

Track Cycling:

Sprinters Dream Omnium Event #1 – There aren’t too many opportunities to fine tune your match sprint skills, but this three event series is designed to help. The day starts out with a 200 meter qualifier and then based on your time, you are matched up with others for the sprint tournament. Get your cat and mouse game on and be there! For more information, click here.

Coming Up:

ABD Master’s Memorial Day Race Series – If you can participate in master’s category races, you can stay close to home and get in three solid days of racing. This series is typically held in Wood Dale, but this year the races will be held on another familiar course in West Chicago. For more information, click here.

Quad Cities Memorial Day Races – It’s four days of hot competition and great cycling courses in the quad cities area. These races have been around for a long time and as a Midwesterner, they are a rite of passage. The racing begins on Friday with the Burlington road race. Saturday is the infamous Snake Alley criterium, which is highlighted by the twisty cobble climb. Sunday is the Melon City criterium, which is more of a hilly circuit course with a speed bump at the bottom of the descent. The weekend wraps up on Monday with the Quad Cities Criterium (now called the Kwik Star Criterium). For more information, click here.

Palmyra Road Race – It’s another road race in Palmyra, Wisconsin. It’s a place where country roads still exist and they’re quite scenic as well. Head north and get your fill of road racing! For race information, click here.

Plan Ahead:

Women’s Dirt Day’s #1 – In its 9th year, the Women’s Dirt Day’s series offer women of all abilities a chance to come together and hit the trails. The first stop is Kettle Moraine. Meet at the John Muir Mountain Bike Trailhead. For more information, click here.

Glencoe Grand Prix – This has become the premier cycling event in Illinois. The race attracts riders from around the country and the course is technical and challenging. Make plans to race and then stick around for the food and music. For more information, click here.

Cobb Park Criterium – There probably isn’t a course in Illinois with more history of famous riders racing on it than Cobb Park. The course is flat and has a few technical sections, making it a crit riders dream. For more information, click here.

Bong and a Half 30K TT – The second in this time trial series is a loop and a half around the Bong Recreational Center. It’s a rolling course with all right turns. For more information, click here.

Have a great weekend!

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Filed under #optoutside, Bike Racing, Charities, Chicago Cycling, criterium racing, Cycling, Road Racing, Time Trials, Track Cycling, Trail Rides

Happy New Year!

As we welcome in 2018, it’s a time to reflect on our 2017 season and set new goals for 2018. Will your goals include a major event, building for a strong season, or to use cycling as a means to enjoy pedaling outside and keeping fit? Be sure to set realistic but challenging goals and enjoy the journey along the way.

Events:

Hot Soup for the Homeless – Start the New Year off on a good note by delivering soup to the homeless on your bike. You can join the group leading this charge in the Bucktown/Logan Square neighborhood, or take up the charge closer to your home. For more information, click here.

Coming Up:

Hugh Jass Fat Bike Series – Event #5 – Fat bike riding doesn’t get much better than snow-covered trail riding. With the current snowy conditions and the predicted future snowfall, next weekend will be a fun-fest. This edition of the Hugh Jass series is located at the New Fane mountain bike trails in northern Kettle Moraine. For more information, click here.

Cyclocross National Championships – For those with a 2017 goal that extends into 2018 with the Cyclocross National Championships, stay focused, the journey is almost complete! This year’s championships are being held in Reno, Nevada from January 9 through the 14th. For more information, click here.

ABD Indoor Time Trial Series – The road season begins with the indoor time trial series put on by ABD Cycling. The first event is Sunday, January 14th at Winfield Central High School. First up will be a 10k rolling hill course. For event information, click here.

Have a great weekend & Happy New Year!

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Filed under #optoutside, Bike Racing, Bike Winter, Charities, Chicago Cycling, Cyclocross Racing, Fat Bike Racing, Time Trials, Trail Rides

Bloomington Criterium

In this final August weekend, we are on the tipping point of transitioning from road to cyclo-cross racing, so there is an abundance of options to choose from. Whether you opt for road, track or cross, there’s something exciting for you. Check the listings below for opportunities.

Events:

CX-Eliminator – This is a cyclo-cross race with a track race twist! Each category will race for one lap to be seeded into elimination rounds. From there, riders will need to hold on tight to stay away from elimination. The course is short and technical and includes grass, dirt, pavement, gravel, climbs and barriers – a real throat burner! For more information, click here.

Bloomington Criterium – Don’t hang up your road bike yet, this late season crit is one not to miss. The course includes climbing, descending and some high speed corners. It’s a quick two hour ride south for a little more road racing this season. For more information, click here.

Relay Cross – This race stirs the energy from the road to the cross season. It’s a light-hearted event, but competitive nonetheless. Grab your partner and plan your strategy for this team event. For more information, click here.

Return to Cherry Valley Time Trial – This course was used earlier in the spring. At this point of the season the trees may bring some shelter from the sun and block a bit of the wind, but the course still offers up rolling hills and chip and seal pavement, which will put you to the test. For more information, click here.

Track Cycling:

Illinois State Madison Championships – It’s the final track state championship for the season and a fun one at that! The Madison is a two-person team Points race. While one rider is working to advance the team, the other is out on recovery and they switch on and off with a hand sling. If you’re not going to participate, you should at least stop by and check out the action. For event information, click here.

Coming Up:

Gateway Cup – One last sizzling summer weekend of criterium racing in St. Louis. There are four days of racing with some great courses.

Friday’s Tour de Lafayette is a flat, four corner crit, but a degree of difficulty is added to the evening races as the sky darkens and the lights cast shadows on the racers.

Saturday’s Francis Park course is also a four corner crit, but there is a little bit of elevation change.

Sunday it’s off to the Hill or Giro Della Montagna, the Italian section of town for a challenging course that lives up to its name.

Monday is the final day of racing with the Benton Park Classic. This is probably the most technical of the courses; challenging, but fun!

Race one day or race all four. For event information, click here.

Velocause CX Relay – Still looking for some team cross racing? Head to Wisconsin for another opportunity to partner up for a fun day of cross. For event information, click here.

Bryce Master 30K Time Trial – This race is located in Garden Prairie, which is close to Rockford. The course features several corners and a few changes in elevation, so practice up on your handling skills to maximize your power output. For race information, click here.

Have a great weekend!

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Filed under Bike Racing, Charities, Chicago Cycling, criterium racing, Cycling, Cyclocross Racing, Time Trials, Track Cycling, Trail Rides