Yes, that’s right, I’m declaring cyclocross season officially open! Okay, maybe it’s not quite cyclocross season yet, (we still have some great mtb and road racing ahead of us) but I’ve already been out for two CX rides, and seen a lot Facebook chatter about racers getting their new whips built up, tuned up and ready to go. It’s been odd this year: I feel like the weather has played a large role in the early ‘cx itch’. A late start to the race season back in the spring, followed by seemingly endless bouts of serious rain wreaking havoc all across the province, has kept me, and I think a lot of other people ‘off their game’ this year.

I don’t ever recall riding my mtb bike on so many paved trails, dodging sections of bog, as I have this year – it’s been sad, really. In fact, my time on the singletrack this summer so far has been so abysmal, I barely know how to ride anymore – what flow I once had, is gone. Case in point, being up in Canmore for Nationals (just to watch, not to race) I went for an early morning lap of the course, and I was all over the place, taking bad lines, timid on downhills, and just pretty much riding like a idiot. I even crashed on a simple little downhill switchback – injuring my heel somehow… That was a couple weeks ago, and it’s still not 100% – weak sauce, I tell ya.

So, in the wake of a what’s been a truly lack-luster mtb season, and in the face of what could be more miserable weather, I say screw it! Break out the cross bikes! After all, bad weather and cross go hand-in-hand, like peanut butter and jelly, rum and coke, ginger beef and All-Dressed Ruffles potato chips, or Ken Hurd and Adult Contemporary satellite radio… It’s a match made in heaven, so let’s embrace it.

On that note, I’m especially excited about this season because I’ve got a new CX ride, thanks to Sri Importing. A 2011 carbon VINER Perfecta! Not only is it a sincerely beautiful example of Italian design and styling, making it extremely easy on the eyes, I can tell immediately that it’s super light, stiff, responsive and fast! It’s also full Campagnolo, which is going to take some getting used to. I’ll have a full review of the bike later on this season. If you don’t want to wait for my review, you can always checkout Bike Radar’s review here.

So, now that I’ve declared cross season open, let’s get our ever illusive canti-brakes dialled in, and dig out our cowbells. I can’t wait put some serious miles in over the coming months, come rain, come shine, snow or whatever, because hey, that’s cross!

And just in case you need a little more convincing, thinking, ‘Hey, it’s still summer, dude… It’s way to early to break out my cross bike!’, here’s a vid I came across to amp you up and get you in a CX frame of mind. Just a note, you need to stick with this one a bit.  I’d have edited it alot tighter, but there are some gem moments if you watch all 3 mins. It’s worth it.

Portland is a Cyclocross town from Mason Marsh on Vimeo.