FROM the outside, cyclocross seems chaotic – what with it’s maze-like circuits that zig-zag across muddy fields and in-and-out of woodlands like a spider web gone crazy – yet it makes perfect sense to anyone brave enough to give it a go.
There aren’t many other disciplines that force riders down mud-strewn descents, scattered with tree roots before taking them on snail-paced trudges through muddy fields. Nor do many have the same intense and family-friend crowds that shout encouragement while frantically ringing a cowbell with all their might.
Last weekend wasn’t any different, as the smell of embrocation and the sound of those aforementioned cowbells rang out in the valley for Round One and Two of the Rapha SuperCross, as racers did battle on a challenging course that traversed the grounds, steps and hillsides of the Shibden Hall estate in Halifax.
Photographer Dan Monaghan was there, up to his neck in mud, to take some brilliant immersive snaps that we think you’ll agree really sum up a great day.
The racing was as hard and closely fought as you’d expect with more than 800 riders taking part over the weekend. Now the focus shifts to Round three on the London grand finale at Granary Square, Kings Cross on November 14. Free entry for spectators and a unique course for the racers through Central Saint Martin’s University and the Granary Square fountains.