No, there's no new rule in effect, I just came across an anonymous inflammatory comment on Dave's Babblicious post. The comment was this:
Let's get fair on equipment... I think it would be great and FAIR if all riders in cyclocross were required to ride cross bikes with drop bars. No mountain bikes and no cross bikes with flat bars because, let's face it, an mtb and/or a cross bike with flat bars can be a big advantage in certain situations and they really don't have any disadvantages. Let's not forget the history of the sport which was road racers training on road equipment in the winter months.
As far as cross courses go, let's follow Europes lead in the latest designs and trends. That way, our riders will be better prepared for racing outside of this area and in higher profile and international events.
Let's keep it real, ride clean, and spin to win..
First of all, regarding the course issue (and yes we beat this horse to death last year - see Dave's highly volatile "Jungle" rants) - no doubt we in Nor-Cal have been subject to some of the most technically demanding courses in the country, but I doubt any of the Elite would contend that it puts them at a disadvantage in other areas of the country or world. If anything, technical courses prepare you for the worst a cx course can dish out, like when the weather goes to hell, as weather is inclined to do between Oct and Feb in every corner of the cyclocross universe. If you want to train for Euro-style courses...well, there's always crit-racing.
Second of all...WHAT??? Riders required to ride the same setup? Do you work for the UCI? Ummmm....
(1) Well, that is a rule in UCI races, but...
(2) Not everyone has taken the plunge for a cx bike. A lot of people get into the sport on their MTB, most usually give in and buy a cx bike (probaby b/c their so-called friends said they weren't "keeping it real"), some don't choose to get that serious about it, or don't have $1500 laying around. Is that "fair" to make them buy a bike they don't want or need?
(3) I haven't been on a course in the last 4 years (DFL included) that I would rather have been on an MTB on. If courses aren't suited to your bike, then perhaps you should complain to the promoter (see where that gets you) or just bitch about it in this Blog like Dave Carr does: ("Jungle-cross wah wah wah"). CX courses should
favor a cross bike, if they don't, well then I'll run home and get my mtb and ride it as well. Or maybe, just maybe, somebody
needs to learn to ride their CX bike a little better (there I said it).
(4) No disadvantages? Dude, have you been doing cross races? Personally, I'd be lost if I couldn't settle into my drops on a fast paved section or lever up a steep incline without my brake hoods. Oh my god if I had to schlep my MTB over barriers and try to sit on Andy Jacques-Maynes' wheel on MTB tires I think I would cough up my other lung (note: coughed up one lung just to get on Andy's wheel).
Anyhow, if you think flat bars will make you faster, you should use them. Same goes for a MTB. Same goes for tubulars, or a single front cog, or reversed-brakes, or a helium-filled carbon downtube (patent pending).
My tool of choice is a scandium Sycip
Crossdresser. It does happen to be a cross bike with drop bars, but that's not why I ride it - I ride it because it rocks my world
. If your bike isn't rockin' your world, you need to change your setup. In fact, it's only FAIR if everyone is on a bike that rocks their world...