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Crazy around every corner: Photos from the Cross Crusade Halloween weekend in Bend

by on October 31st, 2016 at 4:00 pm

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This running-of-the-bulls inspired costume was one of the most creative of the day.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The River City Bicycle Cyclocross Crusade was at an entirely different level over the weekend. With its annual stop in Bend for races number five and six in the eight-race series, it was Oregon cyclocross at its peak. There was creativity, debauchery, inspiration, and fun around every corner.
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Cross Crusade heads to Bend for big Halloween weekend

by on October 27th, 2016 at 9:42 am

 Come for the bike race, stay for the costumes (and the party, and the fun people, and the beer...).(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Come for the bike race, stay for the costumes (and the party, and the fun people, and the beer…).
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The most anticipated weekend of cyclocross in Oregon is just two days away.

With half of the eight race Cross Crusade series in the books, organizers have a special event in store this year with a few new surprises and an entirely new course. Thousands of competitors and fans from throughout the state are expected to make the pilgrimmage to Bend for the traditional Halloween weekend. As usual, the festivities will be based on and around Deschutes Brewery in Bend’s Old Mill District.

As you get your cowbells, bikes, bodies and costumes ready, here are few things to keep in mind…

The course

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There’s an entirely new course this year. It’s got a bit of everything: straight pavement sections, tight trails, and is likely to have some unexpected surprises. Organizers say race sponsor Red Bull is “bringing something very cool,” to the course. We’ll also get to pedal closer to the Deschutes River than ever before as the course winds its way behind the Les Schwab Ampitheater. Oh, and there’s a massive stair run-up that already has people buzzing. Our friends from Deschutes Brewery shared this preview video of it on Instagram on Monday…

The party

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As is tradition, there’s a huge blowout party on Saturday night. This year it’s called “Altercross” and it’s a benefit for Oregon Adaptive Sports. The name is a reference to what organizers describe as, “An immersive alternative reality experience.” “The theme dictates anything can happen,” they continue, “from light, airy, whimsical & fun to dark, scary, creepy & odd… and everything in between!” These parties are known for excellent on-stage entertainment and this year is no different with over a half-dozen acts already lined up.

The headline band is Deltron 3030 an “alt-rap” trio from Oakland, California whose 2000 album, “warped space, bent time, transcended genre and blew minds, creating an album that still stands today as one of the most important records in the annals of underground hiphop.”

In years past this 21-and-over party has had to turn people away, but it’s in a new, larger space this year. Advance tickets are already sold out but plenty will be available at the door for $25. Check out the official event page on the Deschutes website or the Facebook event page for the latest updates.

The scene

Bend Cyclocross weekend 2-72

If you want to experience true Oregon cyclocross — and arguably one of the best-run ‘cross events in America — you won’t want to miss this weekend. The team vibe is always strong at this event and this year will be no different. You have the best racers in the state, one of the largest race series in the world (in terms of participation) and the silliness and fun of Halloween costumes all over the place (the official costume day is Sunday). And did we mention it all happens on the grounds of one of the 8th largest craft brewer in the U.S.?!

There will also be a cross-country running race thrown into the mix on Saturday afternoon.

If you go the event, look for me and say hi. I’ll be there all weekend to race and soak up the atmosphere and I’ll be spending some time in the Giant Bicycles booth showing off my new bike!

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 – jonathan@bikeportland.org

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Cross Crusade gets wet and wild in the Gorge at race #3

by on October 15th, 2016 at 9:49 pm

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Quite a backdrop for bike racing.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The River City Bicycles Cyclocross Crusade headed to the Columbia River Gorge for race #3 in the series with the scenic town of Cascade Locks playing host. With the steep gorge cliffs on one side and the mighty Columbia on the other, hundreds of racers enjoyed an excellent day of racing despite dire storm warnings all over the news.

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Over 1,800 racers and muddy conditions kick off Cross Crusade season

by on October 10th, 2016 at 2:40 pm

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The mud in this tricky off-camber downhill section gave even the elite riders a lot to think about on Sunday.
(Photo: Dylan VanWeelden/Pushing Towards Normal)

The River City Bicycles CylcoCross Crusade kicked off in fine fashion this weekend. With a big double-header at Alpenrose Dairy in southwest Portland, we are now in the thick of Portland ‘cross season. And by thick, I mean thick mud.
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The ‘Cross Crusade’ begins a new era this weekend

by on October 7th, 2016 at 10:44 am

(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

A few of the 1,500 images we’ve taken of the Cross Crusade over the past decade. See them all here.
(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

This weekend the race series that defines cyclocross in Portland will turn over a new leaf as it launches into its 23rd season. First held in 1993 — before many of its current participants were even born — the River City Bicycles CycloCross Crusade has grown past its adolescent years and is settling into adulthood. The antics the series is known for are by no means coming to an end; but you might notice a slight smoothing of the edges and a shift from partying to professionalism. (more…)

Brad Ross, Cross Crusade promoter since 1995, announces his retirement

by on November 17th, 2015 at 3:52 pm

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Ross at work in 2007.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Brad Ross, the man behind the Cross Crusade, which has grown into one of most successful cyclocross race series in the world, has announced his retirement. Ross was also the director of the Cascade Cycling Classic and many other races during his career.
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Through the Lens: The Cross Crusade visits Cascade Locks

by on October 20th, 2015 at 12:33 pm

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The beauty, folly, and challenge of cyclocross was in full display in Cascade Locks on Sunday.
(Photos by Dylan VanWeelden/Pushing Towards Normal)

By all accounts, this weekend’s Cross Crusade event out at Cascade Locks was a huge success. Everyone I’ve talked to about it had rave reviews — not just for the usual racing and fun vibe these events have; but for the venue itself. 
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Cross Crusade #4 recap: Sticky mud takes its toll

by on October 27th, 2014 at 1:11 pm

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After a record-setting week of rain, the Cross Crusade‘s fourth stop was mired in mud. (more…)

Manicures? Gourmet cooking? It’s all possible at Cross Crusade ‘Tailgator’ competition

by on October 21st, 2014 at 12:02 pm

Cross Crusade #7 at PIR-48
Which Cross Crusade team has the
best tailgate party?
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

When you mix one of the largest cyclocross scenes in the world with promoters who focus on the fun as much as the competition, you end up with events where there’s almost as much action in the team pit area as on the race course. This Sunday, the Cross Crusade pits will be even livelier as series organizers host the first-ever Tailgator Competition.

As we shared last year, the rows of team tents that line Cross Crusade courses become a small cyclocross city on race day. People bring in full-size BBQs, fire pits, pop-up changing rooms, tables, chairs, custom-made bike racks, deep-fryers, and more. Each year it seems the set-ups get more involved and elaborate. (more…)

Cross Crusade #3 recap: Photos, drone footage and mishaps

by on October 20th, 2014 at 11:33 am

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(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

Race #3 of the River City Bicycles Cross Crusade is in the books. After a double-header opening weekend at Alpenrose Dairy, the series continued in fine style with a turnout of 1,277 racers at Portland International Raceway yesterday.
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