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Saturday, September 25

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Cycling Tue Jul 28 2009


A month from now Palos Park, part of the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, and home to some pretty great mountain biking, plays host to the Palos Meltdown cross-country mountain bike race on Sunday, August 30th.

If you didn't know, Palos played a part in the Manhattan Project and in the woods, demarcated by signs, are some spots that are well, a little hot. That's where the meltdown in the name of the race comes from, but that day the only things burning up will be the lungs and legs of hundreds of cyclists careening down the hills and through the trees.

The course will be a variation of last year's -- Three Ravines will play a part, along with the Bullfrog Slough loop. I'm not entirely familiar with the park's trail system, having only raced last year and ridden it twice this year, but the terrain will split things up nicely according to fitness, skill level, and bravery.

There are three races: Beginner (one lap at 8 miles); Sport (two 8 mile laps); and Expert (three, of course). Unlike last year, the beginner race is on the same course as the rest of the classes -- and unlike last year, in which one could race a cyclocross bike or even a stout road bike with knobbies, the course now demands an off-road only machine.

The cost to register is $35 and includes a t-shirt and assorted swag.

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