Two fights and two knockouts at the Gran Prix of Gloucester cyclocross races where Jeremy Powers (Rapha-Focus) was the heavyweight at the weekend’s racing in northeastern Massachussets.
Powers of Rapha Focus took two convincing wins with patient efforts, waiting until others were at their limits before rolling away for solo wins both days last weekend. “These races are about finding that 3 or 4 seconds per lap and taking advantage,” Powers said after day two’s race. “Everyone out here is virtually at the same level, you just had to take time when you could, and I did.”
J-Pow rode his own race on course conditions that weren’t ideal for him at the spectacular oceanfront location at Stage Fort Park in northern Massachussets. Unusually hot, dry, and dusty was a surprise in a place where racers have come to expect cold, rain, and even snow. The dry kept speeds high and dust made breathing and visibility difficult. Most racers went without eyewear.
Powers rode SRAM’s Force CX1 groupset with a single 44 front chainring and an 11-30 cassette. Powers runs - and loves - SRAM’s new road hydraulic disc brakes. His wheels of choice are the Zipp 303 Firecrest Disc-brake tubulars. Powers also rides Zipp Service Course SL stem, handlebars and seatpost. Powers uses Quarq power meters exclusively.
On top of the fast racing SRAM hosted a “Single’s party” onsite where they gave away five 1x (one-by) “Hop-up” kits to racers and spectators who signed up. The kits included the basics for a 1x system, including a single X-Sync chainring and the 1x X-Horizon rear derailleur. The kits can easily convert any SRAM 10 or 11-speed (22) bike to 1x11. SRAM’s Force CX1 1x is the world’s only cyclocross specific drivetrain and delivers perfect gearing, incredible chain management, and unbelievably quiet performance for the range of conditions of 'cross.
Photos of Jeremy Powers by Wil Matthews Photography