What is the Midnight Ride of Cyclocross?
On April 18th, 1775, Paul Revere (along with William Dawes) embarked on a journey to warn Samuel Adams and John Hancock of the British troops being sent to arrest them for insurrection against the Crown, as well as destroy guns and ammunition housed in Concord, MA. On April 19th (what is today celebrated as Patriot’s Day), Minutemen and British troops met at Lexington Green in what became known as “The Shot Heard Round the World.” The rest, as they say, is history.
New England Cyclocross (NECX) reflects the spirit embodied in the American Revolution where it began, combining of Old World customs with New World vision. NECX is steeped in the heritage of European cyclocross, a culture brought to the US and cemented into New England bike culture by NECX luminaries such as Paul Curley, Richard Sachs, Tom Stevens, Frank and Mark McCormack, and Adam Myerson (to name a few). To this tradition has evolved a unique flavor and culture that has produced some of the best cyclocross racers in the US, a legacy that continues to grow today. As the US was born out of old values and new vision, so is cyclocross in New England.
The Midnight Ride of Cyclocross kicks of New England’s “Holy Week of Cyclocross“, a 6 race event that spans ten days. Along with the Gran Prix of Gloucester, Night Weasels Cometh, and the Providence Cyclocross Festival, the Midnight Ride of Cyclocross provides local, national and international cross enthusiasts and beginners alike the opportunity to witness first-hand NECX culture with the European tradition of a block of intense racing across different venues, each with its own distinctive feel. At the same time, it does so with a New World perspective of what CX in the U.S. and New England means. Combining old and new, tradition and innovation, customs and change, The Midnight Ride of Cyclocross is the opening shot of the New England Cyclocross Revolution, the first of the battles which will continue for 10 days.
The (Bolton) Fairgrounds of Lancaster, MA provides an idyllic backdrop to experience an autumn night race in New England. The Fairgrounds comprises 50 acres of grassy fields, trails, open air barns, and rolling terrain, allowing for a balanced blend of course features and numerous design options. The venue is conveniently located 4 miles west of Interstate 495 on Rte 117, providing a relatively brief commute for cyclists from around the Boston metropolitan area, as well as Southern New Hampshire, Southern Maine, Rhode Island, Northern Connecticut, and Western Massachusetts.