View from one of my morning commutes
Before too long my time here in Aotearoa will be complete - our visas will expire, and we will move on to wherever I am able to land a position. I only took up road cycling since I've been here, and I'm wondering if the quality of the amateur racing will be able to compare to what is available here. I was thinking about it the other day, and if I was really gung-ho, I am able to race in local organized races (races, not just rides) five days a week! Six if you include track! And these are all generally inexpensive events, usually no more than $15-25 entry fees. Now, this is probably the norm in France and Belgium, but I'm wondering what I should expect if I end up moving stateside. I've done a bit of internet searching (alright, a lot of internet searching) into local bike clubs in any potential job locations. Yes, it actually plays a big part in where I decide to take a job. Anyway, it seems like in the states, there are only a handful of local crits each season in any location, with a couple of road events sprinkled in. Unless there are more local events that aren't easily found on the internet, it seems that it's going to be a major shift in the culture. I wonder if it has anything to do with traffic management and general liability issues... Regardless, I think that these little weekly local races are really what constitute the lifeblood of cycle racing, as it really permits people of all levels to participate and challenge themselves, and probably does more for getting people involved in cycling than any infrastructure projects or law changes ever could.