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By Karen Kefauver – Sentinel correspondent
September 10, 2010
Link to Sentinel article

Cycling Events in Santa Cruz CountyThere’s a chill in the air, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to put your bike in storage ’til spring. In fact, it’s an ideal time to gear up for a number of fun fall cycling events in Santa Cruz County. Among them is cyclocross season, which kicked off this month and continues through January, plus there’s Bike to Work and School, the Radical Reels Film Festival and the Surf City AIDS Ride to get you stoked.

The Radical Reels Festival

If you need to get pumped up to cycle, check out the film “Look to the Ground,” featuring Bobby McMullen. McMullen is an extreme athlete who remains competitive at an elite level despite being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at 12 and suffering loss of vision, years of dialysis and two double transplants kidney and pancreas.

This summer, McMullen raced the Euro Cup SuperEnduro in Italy, followed by the Megavalanche race in Alpe d’Huez, France. He is the first visually impaired rider let alone two-time double transplant recipient to have ever competed in these races. The Megavalanche is one of the most extreme mountain bike races in the world: 1,000 riders start at the same time for a race that drops more than 10,000 feet in 19 miles.

The film is a 7-minute short, but it is long on inspiration. It’s part of the Radical Reels Tour, a collection of action-packed mountain sports films that comes to Santa Cruz for one night only, Sept. 25 at 7 p.m. at UC Santa Cruz Classroom Unit 2 above the Bay Tree Bookstore.

Tickets are $10, $5 for UCSC students. For more information visit www.ucscrecreation.com and McMullen’s website: www.RideBlindRacing.com


I have not raced cyclocross for a few seasons, so naturally I’m a little rusty on the signature moves of the niche cycling sport. Jumping on and off my bike, running up steep hills and leaping over wooden barriers while carrying my bike is not part of my normal rides, but it is critical training for cyclocross. Since this style of riding includes such a unique blend of road and mountain bike techniques, practice is key. Last Sunday, I was inspired to pump up the tires on my purple Rock Lobster cyclocross bike and attend a cyclocross skills clinic. Hosted by Bike Station Aptos and Ciclista Bonita www.ciclistabonita.com — a new women’s cycling team based in Santa Cruz County — the clinic boasted professional cyclist Ben Jacques-Maynes as one of the several instructors. The half-day session filled to capacity with 60 people, including a handful of juniors.

“We had a waiting list,” said Mary Perez, Ciclista Bonita Team Manager.

Perez is considering hosting another cyclocross clinic in October. Meanwhile, the team is organizing a series of health and fitness talks focused on women but open to everyone. On Sept. 28, Dr. Goldi Jacques-Maynes of Golden Chiropractic will talk about “Self Care for Ciclistas: How to keep your body happy with simple stretches, foam rollers and massage sticks.” The talk will take place at Bike Station Aptos. $10 donation is encouraged to help support women’s and junior cycling programs. For a listing of other cyclocross clinics and a cyclocross race calendar, visit www.ncnca.org.

Bike to Work and School

There’s nothing like a free breakfast to inspire people to ride their bikes.

Mark Oct. 7 on your calendars for the 12th annual Fall Bike to Work and School Day www.bike2work.com. The fall event, more than the spring event, focuses on supporting kids walking and biking to school to become healthier and more environmentally aware. In preparation for biking to school, kids from kindergarten to fifth grade can attend a free clinic and bike rodeo Saturday in Scotts Valley. Sponsored by the Scotts Valley Police Department, the event begins at 10 a.m. at Marcdosa Park, 1 Civic Center Drive.

This free event will feature helmet checks, bicycle checks, as well as an obstacle course designed to help children master bicycle safety skills. A 12:30 p.m. lunch is included as well as a raffle drawing. For more information contact Lt. John Hohmann at 440-5653. To download a liability waiver in advance, visit www.scottsvalleypd.com.

Surf City AIDS Ride

Finally, here is a chance to test your end-of-summer bicycling fitness: the California Coast Classic Sept. 25-Oct. 2 and the Surf City AIDS Ride on Oct. 3.

The Coast Classic, a multi-day charity ride for the Arthritis Foundation, begins in San Francisco and ends in Santa Cruz on Sept. 25. On the 26th, cyclists will ride to Monterey and, after that, stop in Big Sur, San Simeon, Oceano, Buellton, Ventura and Santa Monica.
In all, the Coast Classic www.californiacoastclassic.org/ covers 525 approximately 525 miles.

Routes for the Surf City AIDS Ride, which raises funds to support the Santa Cruz AIDS Project, start at 12 miles and include 30-, 60- and 100-mile courses. Start at San Lorenzo Park in Santa Cruz to the sound of live music. Now celebrating its 10th year, the ride has raised more than $100,000 for the Santa Cruz AIDS Project.
Find more information at: www.scapsite.org/ride.php.

Karen Kefauver, www.karenkefauver.com, is a freelance sports and travel journal is based in Santa Cruz and an avid cyclist. Assuming she survives, Karen will post her Downieville race report here: www.santacruzlive.com/blogs/outside

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