CRAFT SPORTSWEAR Gran Prix of Gloucester

Events: Craft Sportswear Gran Prix of Gloucester (Gloucester, MA – USA)

Words and photos by John Herron

Set in scenic Stage Fort Park overlooking Gloucester’s outer harbor, the unofficial “New England World Championships”  draws big numbers of both spectators and racers.  This was the 18th  year of racing at this amazing venue, and the local club, Essex County Velo (ECV), helped put on another seamless weekend of racing (Oct 15-16).  I volunteered and raced in the event’s early years, and the growth since then has been tremendous. This year offered unseasonably warm and sunny conditions, spreading bystanders out onto the beaches and scaling the enormous tablet rock for bird’s eye views.

I didn’t register this year, and instead took pics of my fast-guy riding buddies.  I heard spots went quickly, so I’ll sign up early next year.  However, I have mixed feelings about racing again.  The excitement of watching a big pack of riders speed by made me want to grab my bike and take chase, but I also know that many of those top racers were barely born when I last competed.  And many were not yet a glimmer in their parent’s eyes.  There was a large contingency of teens and younger kids racing.  It’s good to see a healthy next generation of riders, and fun to overhear locals comment on how they’d “never seen so many bike riders before”.  Races like Gloucester inspire new riders and grow the sport.

The warm and dry weather caused a bit of slipping and sliding on the dusty course, but riders didn’t have much trouble.  The layouts included the usual rocks, obstacles and sandy sections, but lacked some of the crazier climbs and beach sections of years past.  Some racers sported coal-miner’s snot face, and had scratchy lungs afterwards, but relatively low levels of grime and blood.  I kept my Ipswich Ale covered and had no overall discomfort from the dust, but wished I had brought sunglasses.

A thoroughly enjoyable weekend.  Leaves were peeped, races were raced and cheered, beaches were walked, and rocky shorelines explored.  And I’m already thinking about next year, and loading up the family, bikes, fishing gear, and beach chairs, and hoping for another fine Fall weekend in Gloucester.

Results

Day 1:

  • Ellen Noble (USA) Aspire Racing
  • Helen Wyman (GBr) Kona Factory Racing
  • Emma White (USA) Cannondale Cyclocrossworld
  • Curtis White (USA) Cannondale pb Cyclocrossworld.com
  • Daniel Summerhill (USA) Maxxis-Shimano
  • Jeremy Durrin (USA) Neon Velo Cycling Team

Day 2:

  • Helen Wyman (GBr) Kona Factory Racing
  • Emma White (USA) Cannondale Cyclocrossworld.com
  • Crystal Anthony (USA) maxxis-shimano pro cyclocross
  • Curtis White (USA) Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com
  • Michael Van Den Ham (Can)
  • Daniel Summerhill (USA) Maxxis-Shimano

 

CRAFT SPORTSWEAR Gran Prix of Gloucester

CRAFT SPORTSWEAR Gran Prix of Gloucester

CRAFT SPORTSWEAR Gran Prix of Gloucester

CRAFT SPORTSWEAR Gran Prix of Gloucester

CRAFT SPORTSWEAR Gran Prix of Gloucester

CRAFT SPORTSWEAR Gran Prix of Gloucester

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CRAFT SPORTSWEAR Gran Prix of Gloucester

CRAFT SPORTSWEAR Gran Prix of Gloucester

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