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Mid Term Review: Forme Calver SLC Carbon Cyclocross Bike

Thanks to Cadence Images for the photography, and VOID for providing us with some lovely kit for the photos

At the start of the season we were lucky enough to receive a brand new Forme Calver SLC Crossbike to test out for the season. After some early season racing here are our first impressions:

“Having only ridden high-end cantilever cross bikes prior to this season, I was excited to test out this new offering from Forme.

Forme Carbon Calver SLC Cyclocross Bike Review by @Cyclocrosss

This is Forme’s high end Carbon Disc Brake CX race machine fully kitted out for the serious racer with Shimano’s new Dura Ace Di2 9170 Hydraulic Groupset, and as ridden by multiple British CX Champion Ian Field and his Neon Velo teammates.

Our build came as a full bike, however a frameset only option is available, to suit cross racer’s preferences and budget.

Forme Carbon Calver SLC Cyclocross Bike Review by @Cyclocrosss
Photo: Cadence Images | Kit: Void Fall Jersey

Immediately the lightweight setup provided super straight line acceleration, whilst the stiff bottom bracket and laterally stiff rear triangle seemed to deliver all the power to the rear wheel. I first rode this at the National Trophy at Derby, surprising myself by leading out the race from the gun taking the holeshot. The main frame angles seem race oriented, in particular the front fork allowed me to keep the ride aggressive in the corners and the longish wheelbase on the 56 cm frame meant I could keep things stable at speed.

Forme Carbon Calver SLC Cyclocross Bike Review by @Cyclocrosss
Photo: Cadence Images | Kit: Void Armour Jersey’s

This bike came with a tubeless set up which needs some practice to get right, riding very differently to tubulars I recommend giving the tyre pressures plenty of practice before race day to avoid mishaps. That said the Mavic Ksyrium wheels are strong and light, and could cope with everything I threw at them!

Thanks to Forme’s updated geometry the ride inspires confidence and the bike feels bombproof, which is just what you need if you are hopping the hurdles in a race or tackling dry ruts and bumpy fields at speed.

Forme Carbon Calver SLC Cyclocross Bike Review by @Cyclocrosss
Photo: Cadence Images | Kit: Void WindJacket

While I have yet to ride the frame in the mud, the clearance looks to be good with a high seat stay bridge and thin seat stays which seem to offer a good soft ride with vertical compliance given the stiffness mentioned earlier.

Other areas of notice included the through axles keeping things stiff at the rear end of the bike, as well as helping with tracking the front end and obviously the added security of having your wheels securely locked into the frameset. In addition to this, as expected on a race ready frame, internal cable routing helps improve durability and provides a clean finish to the Frame.

Forme Carbon Calver SLC Cyclocross Bike Review by @Cyclocrosss

It is evident that Forme have put extensive time and effort into the design of this bike, with the top tube shape allowing for easier shouldering and most importantly the bottom bracket is threaded meaning there is no creaking, maintenance is easy and there is increase compliance in the BB area.

As expected the Di2 has been faultless and the frameset gives me every confidence it can tackle a heavy winter ahead with ease”

Photo: Cadence Images | Kit: Void Fall Jersey

More information about the new Calver SLC, including where to purchase the bike, can be found here

Words by Alec Gregory

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First Look: Van der Poel’s Secret to Success? 4Gold Nutrition

Mathieu Van der Poel and Gold. Two things commonly associated. Van der Poel does not settle for silver and neither do 4Gold who’s unique brand motto is #DontSettleForSilver

We were contacted through our website a few weeks ago by a Belgian CX Fan, who looked to share with us his reason why he thought Van der Poel had been so dominant this year in Cyclocross.

The margins between winning and losing in sport are often very small, and hence riders look for every marginal gain to increase their performance.

We were pointed in the way of 4Gold.be, a new nutrition company, with great experience.

It turns out Ex-Pro Brent Luyckx and former motocross rider Axel Roelants joined forces with Mathieu Van der Poel to create a high-quality sports drink and nutritional range, which launched this season.

We’ve all heard of MVDP, however it is too Brent and Axel who bring great knowledge to the brand. Luyckx, not so long ago, was a very promising rider himself, together with ex-motocrosser Roelants and cross phenomenon Mathieu Van der Poel seem to have formed the perfect combination. “After more than a year and a half of long days and short nights it is finally, Mathieu Van der Poel, Axel Roelants and I who proudly introduce our food supplement company 4Gold.” explained Luyckx.

Luyckx, who is only 23, was forced to end his career early caused by Crohn’s disease, which affected his intestines. This motivated Brent to strive for the perfect sports nutrition: “During my career, I felt that there was still a lot of improvement in terms of supplementation, so the idea of ​​4Gold has grown to where we are now, namely helping with achieving the dreams of other athletes.”

There is already a wide range of products available specifically for a cyclocross rider. The range includes Pre and Post race drinks as well as Carbo Electrolyte drinks for which maybe were found in the bottle of Mathieu during the early season races!?

A further range is in development with additional energy bars and supplements, and recently a range of special performance coffee has been added to give you that extra recovery benefit.

As a team of professional athletes 4Gold were quick to realise that there are lots of different factors which determine what of, and how much you need to consume. As a result, thanks to extensive research and testing a table can be found on their website suggesting exact qualities and quantities of each product to be consumed depending on your own unique circumstances, such as your type of sport, your height, temperature etc.

And obviously with the extensive drug testing top riders such as Mathieu are subject to, the focus on drug-free food is also present, with products batch tested and batch numbers of purchased products available with information on the site.

More information on 4Gold can be found here

Image result for 4gold

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Live: Superprestige Cyclocross Gavere – Sunday 11th November – Live Video and Replay

With Rain Forecast, Mud could be expected in Gavere! Tune in to watch the action.

*The Superprestige series is Live on GCN Worldwide excluding Belgium and The Netherlands however these viewers can find a link to live action below or watch via Telenet, Proximus or Ziggo Sport.

Timetable

Elite Women – 12:40 UK, 13:40 Europe

Elite Men – 14:00 UK, 15:00 Europe

Livestream

Link 1: GCN Live and full replay on Facebook –  CLICK HERE

Link 2: CYFO Live  – CLICK HERE or HERE

Highlights

Results

Course

Gavere

Start Lists

Elite
Dames
Junioren
Nieuwelingen

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Live: DVV Trophy Cyclocross – Jaarmarktcross Niel – Saturday 10th November – Live Video, Highlights and Full Replay

The second round of the DVV Trofee sees the riders head to Niel with a technical course expected, including sand, off-cambers sections and tricky banks. The weather forecast suggests the rain could finally be arriving so we could have a first taste of some mud this weekend!

*The DVV Trophy Series is Live on GCN, although does see some Geo-Restrictions. Viewers in the USA, Canada, Latin America, UK & Australia can watch live, however Sporza will be broadcasting the race on Belgian Channel Eén (one) which doesn’t have any restrictions.

Timetable

Elite Women – 12:45 UK, 13:45 Europe

Elite Men – 14:00 UK, 15:00 Europe

Livestream

Link 1: GCN Live and full replay – CLICK HERE

Link 2: Sporza Live (No Geo Block) – CLICK HERE

Highlights

Men

Women

U23

Course

Results

CLICK HERE

Start Lists

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New Exclusive First Look: SRAM eTap 12 Speed Cyclocross Groupset CX1

Here’s an exclusive first look at the new SRAM CX1 eTap 12 Speed Wireless Electronic Groupset with a Clutch Mech courtesy of our follower @sven1793.

Also note the new Quarq Power Cranks

Images @cyclocrosss / @sven1793New Exclusive First Look: SRAM eTap 12 Speed Cyclocross Groupset CX1 Full Clutch Groupset New Exclusive First Look: SRAM eTap 12 Speed Cyclocross Groupset CX1 Chainset

Chainset, 46t Narrow Wide ring and Quarq Power Meter
New Exclusive First Look: SRAM eTap 12 Speed Cyclocross Groupset CX1 Rear Clutch Mech
New Clutch Rear Derailleur

More information to follow….

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Live: Pan American Championships Cyclocross – Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th November – Live Video

See European Champs coverage here

Livestream

Timetable

All times given in local time Ontario, Canada

Saturday Live Stream Schedule: 2018 Pan-Ams

Time Race Length
9:40 am Masters Men 65-74, 75+ 30 min
9:41 am Masters Women 55-64, 65-74, 75+ 30 min
10:25 am Masters Women 35-44 40 min
10:26 am Masters Women 45-54 40 min
11:20 am Masters Men 55-64 40 min
12:15 pm Masters Men 45-54 40 min
1:10 pm Masters Men 35-44 50 min

Sunday Live Stream Schedule: 2018 Pan-Ams

Time Race Length
11:40 am Junior Men 40 min
12:35 am U23 Men 50 min
1:40 pm U23 Women 40 min
2:35 pm Elite Men 60 min
3:50 pm Elite Women 50 min

 

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Review – Challenge Grifo Team Edition S 33mm Cyclocross Tubulars

In short: Excellent all round CX tubulars with the proven Grifo Tread, a super soft sidewall, 320TPI casing and a new factory installed sidewall protection.

With us now entering November, and the course conditions softening up, the pros hang up their file-treads and opt for the Grifo Style Pattern.

We glued up a set of Challenge Grifo Team Edition S 33mm Cyclocross Tubular Tyres to see for ourselves why so many athletes are opting for the Grifo as an all round tyre.

First impressions of the new Team Edition S3 super soft sidewall were impressive, with the supple sidewall allowing for the tyres to easily be mounted to our test rims.

The new sidewall also offers additional protection from wear and tear with a new factory installed protective layer, preventing the sidewalls from rotting as fast increasing the tyres durability. That being said, the team edition cotton sidewalls won’t last as well as the basic ‘Grifo Pro’ Model which features a cheaper, less subtle, 300 TPI Super Polly casing compared to the Team Editions 320 TPI Corespun Sealed sidewall.

The new Team Edition sidewall offers a noticeable improvement in performance and feel, compared to the cheaper Grifo Pro Model, however we found the cheaper model to be slightly more durable. That being said, when compared to other big brands the Challenge Range offers excellent durability in comparison and the Team Edition S will still be going strong after a seasons use.

Another benefit of the high TPI (threads per inch) count offered by Challenge is that the feeling of the tyre rolling underneath you in the corners when run at low pressures is almost eliminated. This allowed us to corner at greater speed thanks to a more predictable ride feel.

Challenge sticks with the traditional proven Grifo Tread which offers a combination of different size knobs to allow for low rolling resistance whilst providing traction in the faster corners. The tyres also feature a latex inner tube sewn by hand into the tubulars in Challenges Italian Factory. This combination provides excellent all round speed for the faster grassier courses. The Grifo tread pattern clears mud very well so is also suitable for slippy conditions when others treads may begin to clog up, although if you are looking for something with a more aggressive tread for those really muddy days you should opt for the Limus model, which was ridden to multiple victories in Valkenberg earlier this year at the World Championships.

The main reason why we preferred the Grifo to its rivals such as the Dugast Typhoon and FMB Sprint is the additional side knobs on the very edge of the tyre. We found these provided extra traction when the bike was lent over in the turns and didn’t cost us any straight line speed. This allowed us to still be able to run our intermediate ‘all round’ Grifo tyres on days other racers had to bring out the mud tubs.

Challenge Grifo Tread vs Dugast Typhoon
Left – Challenge Grifo – Right Dugast Typhoon

Finally all Challenge Tyres are also available as Open Tubulars which fit on a standard clincher rim. This allows you to run both the same treads on training and race wheels, and although tubulars for cyclocross provide a massive benefit compared to a clincher tyre, the new Clincher Pro series paired with a Challenge Latex CX Tube helped us bridge the gap in performance between a tubular and clincher setup.

Technical features

Use: Cross Racing: All Around Soft Pack
Size: 28″
Tire Width: 33 mm
Internal Rim Width: 15-19 mm
Weight: 405 gr
TPI: 320
Bead:
Casing: Corespun SEALED
Flat

protection:

PPS
BAR: 1.6-6
PSI: 23-90 – we ran ours as low as 16 PSI
Inner tube: latex
Color: Black-White
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Live: European Championships Cyclocross – Sunday 4th November – Live Video, Results and Preview

This weekend sees the first Championship Jersey’s up for grabs at the European Champs in Rosmalen ‘s-Hertogenbosch.

A full days racing will see 5 Champions crowned.

Expect Live Coverage of Men Elite and Women Elite races, other updates and results will be found below or on our Instagram account.

Timetable

Junior Men – 08:15 UK, 09:15 Europe

U23 Women – 9:30 UK, 10:30 Europe

U23 Men – 11:00 UK, 12:00 Europe

Elite Women – 12:45 UK, 13:45 Europe

Elite Men – 14:15 UK, 15:15 Europe

Livestream

Link 1: Sporza Live (No Geo Block) – CLICK HERE

Live Text Updates expected HERE for Junior and U23 races

Live Timing all races – CLICK HERE

Course

Results

Junioren
Beloften-Vrouwen
Belofte-mannen
Elite Vrouwen
Elite-Mannen

Start Lists

Entry list Masters
Entry list Men Juniors
Entry list Women Under 23
Entry list Men Under 23
Entry list Women Elite
Entry list Men Elite

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Live: DVV Trophy Koppenbergcross – Thursday 1st November – Live Video and Full Replay

November 1st marks the Belgian National Holiday and The Koppenbergcross. Koppenberg hosts the opening round of the DVV Trofee with the iconic course attracting huge crowds and exciting racing!

*The DVV Trophy Series is Live on GCN, although does see some Geo-Restrictions. Viewers in the USA, Canada, Latin America, UK & Australia can watch live, however Sporza will be broadcasting the race on Belgian Channel Eén (one) which doesn’t have any restrictions.

Timetable

Elite Women – 12:45 UK, 13:45 Europe

Elite Men – 14:00 UK, 15:00 Europe

Livestream

Link 1: GCN Live and full replay – CLICK HERE

Link 2: Sporza Live (No Geo Block) – CLICK HERE

Junior and U23 Text Updates HERE from 10am UK 11 Europe

Highlights

Men

Women

U23

Course

Results

CLICK HERE

Start Lists

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Live: Superprestige Ruddervoorde – Sunday 28th October – Live Video and Replay

*The Superprestige series is Live on GCN Worldwide excluding Belgium and The Netherlands however these viewers can find a link to live action below or watch via Telenet, Proximus or Ziggo Sport.

Timetable

Elite Women – 12:40 UK, 13:40 Europe

Elite Men – 14:00 UK, 15:00 Europe

Livestream

Link 1: GCN Live and full replay on Facebook –  CLICK HERE

https://www.facebook.com/globalcyclingnetwork/videos/304403423725073/

Link 2: CYFO Live  – CLICK HERE or HERE

Course

Start Lists