THE A-Z OF CYCLO-CROSS
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“Doing the dismount wrong can cause you to crash or lose time — and it looks rubbish for anyone watching,” says Chris Young, former national cross champion, a BC coach, and the guy who coordinated the British team at their best ever World Championships in 2017. “It’s got to look smooth,” he adds. “Best thing is to watch World Cup races on Youtube.” Young prescribes the modern glide technique. This involves swinging your right leg over the back of the saddle, bringing it next to your left leg, then with your left hand still on the bars and the right hand on the top tube just in front of the saddle, unclipping your left foot while gliding towards the obstacle. “For a second, all your weight is balanced on your arms and that helps you plant your feet just where you want them.” The drivetrain on the right of a bike means textbook dismounts are always to the left. However, left-handed riders might be tempted to do the opposite and Young proposes: “A rider should be able to dismount on either side in case of there being a pronounced camber.” Equally important is how you carry the bike and remount. “A novice can easily lose five seconds to a more experienced rider through each set of obstacles,” says Young.
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