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Tuesday, December 6

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Cycling Mon May 09 2011

Monsters and Fox River Grove Next Weekend


A Bouledogue Tout Noir rider rails it up the Fox River Grove climb / Photo by vectorbug

Two of Chicagoland's more unique and popular criterium races are happening next weekend. Saturday, May 14, the action will be heating up on the Hyde Park Plaisance at the Monsters of the Midway, a 1.1 mile rectangle loop around the Plaisance. A deceptively challenging course due to the wind factor, the Monsters race is often one of attrition due to the high speeds forced by packs of racers desperate to shell all riders not up to snuff. What's especially cruel about Monsters is that one can see the entirety of the course from most spots, which if you're one of the shelled riders, truly hits home how much you need to do your homework. Registration for the fun is here.

Sunday, May 15, the fury on wheels heads west to Fox River Grove. Saved from the jaws of death with a last-minute effort by Psimet Wheels, the Fox River Grove race is a unique one in that it has terrain. Honest, there is an actual hill - and a steep one at that - to race on. A true treat for most Chicagoans whose only concept of terrain involves the rollers of suburban Sheridan Road or the boat ramps, the hill of Fox River Grove will have most riders cursing for they must make the climb every lap. But what goes up must go down and the course also features a winding descent that may have flatlanders white-knuckling as they negotiate the turns. Registration is here.

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