After a long career racing cross in New England, I am starting to notice that some of the mid race banter between riders in the cat 3 fields has turned nasty. For instance, last week I got bumped into a snow fence at Shedd park (Lowell, MA), and was cut to the bone by a chainring on another bike (after some suture work at the Lowell ER it’s healing slowly). This stuff happens in cross, and I don’t blame the rider who bumped me.
What made me sad was the number of other riders who yelled venomous obscenities at me for falling, riding poorly, and flailing in a snow fence while trying to get myself some medical attention. This kind of behavior really has no place in cross – a sport which prides itself at being a low key and fun.
Its not the first time I have seen riders yelling at other riders at New England races this year. Perhaps its time for race promoters and officials to create a zero tolerance policy for rude behavior during a race. I am not naïve enough to think that a small number of riders will not always be rude, but it would be nice to do whatever we can to keep the bad behavior in check and to keep cross welcoming and friendly.
How have others (especially promoters) seen and dealt with rude riders on cross courses?
Come out to Boise. Sure, we have small fields, but all upstanding guys and gals looking out for each other!
Sorry to hear about your experiences, that sucks the fun right outta your day.