I’m not joking when I say that the highlight of my entire cycling season, is hands down the Dark Knight Cross Race.
This year reassured me of that fact, without question.
It wasn’t that many years ago now. Well, okay, it was probably 5-6 years ago… Dang. Anyway, I remember my focus was still on MTB, fully. To me MTB was all there was. I didn’t do road or want to, and I’d never even heard of CX really. I was out for a trail ride on my own in the valley, and I ran into Pepper. I didn’t know her, but I recognized her. I said ‘Hey…’. She said ‘Hey’. I asked if she was going to Canmore for what I think was the Iron Lung. She said ‘No. I’m already in cross mode.’ I didn’t know what that meant, but I said something like ‘Oh yeah’, and nodded knowingly. Then she added, ‘It’s all about cross’ and then smirked… I didn’t get it, but I never forgot it, and I still remember it today because I’ve caught myself saying it more and more the last few seasons. For me, when it comes to racing, it really is ‘all about cross’ for many reasons – and the Dark Knight is the Acme of cross races.
What do I love about cross? The fury, the kaos, the mayhem, the suffering, the pure fun… What’s not to love? The Dark Knight just takes it all to a new level. This year, was certainly an upgrade from 2013. More twists, more turns, addition of fire barriers, a ‘choose your own adventure’ style log-run and ramp-jump section. Add in halmark features like the smoke tunnel, the discoball forest section, the agitator bowl, and the ‘short-cut of gastronomic peril’ plus the Arkham race and you’ve got a recipe for cyclocross nirvana.
The Dark Knight has been growing in popularity year-over-year to no big surprise. This year, it set records, with 300 racers opting in for a seat at the cool kids table. It’s not a stretch to predict this event will sell out completely in 2015 so if you’re planning on getting in on the madness, best keep your eye out for early registration, or budget for a bribe of some kind.
Kudos to all those behind the scenes who make the DK what it is, cause what it is, is awesome!