San Francisco's Golden Gate Park hosts world titles
The Rapha Focus duo Chris Jones and Julie Krasniak took out the unofficial titles at the 2011 Single Speed Cyclo-cross World Championships, held in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park on Sunday.
Costumed competitors took to the 2km circuit which had been thoroughly soaked by overnight storms to compete for the overall prize: not a gold medal, not a rainbow jersey, but a world championship tattoo.
The single speed cyclo-cross discipline has been growing in popularity through the grass-roots efforts of local 'cross promoters, and the first "world championships" were held in 2007 in Portland, Oregon.
The 2011 event whittled down the hundreds of entrants to 150 starters in the men's race through qualifying "feats of strenght" on Saturday which included several challenges scattered around San Francisco: a sprint up California Street's knee-breaking grades, a run up the Lyon Street steps 40% grade, a dollar grab, wheel change and a sand dune challenge at Ocean Beach.
On race day, riders were lined up on the grid and then surprised with a Le Mans-style start which sent them up a steep run up back to the grid in search of their machines to start the race.
Rapha Focus riders Chris Jones and Julie Krasniak, dressed in "I love wieners" costumes, each secured early leads which they never relinquished, inspired perhaps to ride faster while being chased by a shark, chicken, gorilla and crocodile, among other "creatures".
You can view the full video interview with Julie Krasniak here.
Full video interview with Chris Jones.
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