Saturday, August 29, 2009

Rockburn's other half?

Have you heard about Rockburn Cross's other half, Schooley Mill Cross?

The good people of Howard County caught the cyclocross bug and wanted more.  The inaugural Rockburn Cross in December 2007, while relatively small at only 191 entries, significantly exceeded expectations and got rave feedback.  For '08 we joined the MABRAcross Series, moved a month earlier and anticipated even better attendance.  We started with a projected attendance baseline of 200, hoping for more like 250.  (We got 386, plus Li'l Belgians.)  Nonetheless, being the insatiable type, I began scouting satellite photos of Howard County's other large parks to see what other cross potential there may be.  I saw a few that looked like they may be able to fit a course, and picked Schooley Mill Park near Clarksville to visit in early October.

At the same time--a full month before Rockburn's second edition--the county contacted me asking if I could put on another race in March-ish.  I explained that cross is not a Spring sport but also suggested they consider a road or mountain bike race.  But I also asked if we could add another cross race in Fall.  They said "sure, have you ever been to Schooley Mill Park?"  It was meant to be.  Putting on another race is no easy thing, but Team BBC was in the hunt for a race to promote at the same time, so another star aligned when they agreed to take on the event.  Two venues only 20 minutes apart made for the perfect opportunity to create a real double weekend and so Howard County Double Cross was born.

Now, I may be biased, but Schooley Mill Park may be one of the best venues we've got.  It's as spectator-friendly as BCA Cross but as big as Rockburn.  It's rife with "natural" obstacles--so many that we actually won't even use half of them.  It will have indoor registration and heated bathrooms.  You can check out the course map here to see what the Boys in Pink of Team BBC have designed.  So mark your calendars and plan on spending the weekend on Howard County.  We are also working on a race hotel, so spend less time on the beltway and more time recovering for Rockburn!

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