DCCX: Arley Kemmerer Interview

Kemmerer pulling away at DCCX

Arley Kemmerer (Hub Racing) is an elite level women’s cyclocrosser that has been racking up UCI points this season with a slew of top 20 finishes at big races. In her third season of ‘cross, Arley has established herself as a top racer in the Mid-Atlantic region. Happy, but not satisfied, with how her season has progressed so far, Kemmerer would like to improve on her already impressive top 25 national ranking and finish out the MAC series in the top three. 

When it comes to the MABRA Cyclocross Series, nobody has come close to Kemmerer. She powered away from the competition in the muddy Ed Sander Memorial race back in September and did the same at this past Sunday’s DCCX.

We caught up with Arley—who somehow balances a full race schedule with the demands of being in her third year of law school—to learn more about her season, training and the DCCX race. 

Thanks for reading.

You were a skier before bike racer. How does the skill-set from skiing transfer to cycling? 

Ski racing has definitely helped for cyclocross. A big part of ski racing is carrying your speed efficiently around turns, which requires you to choose and hold a fast line, which translates well into navigating a cyclocross course. 

How long have you been racing ‘cross? Is CX or road your main cycling focus? 

This is my 3rd cyclocross season. I’d say I focus equally on road and cyclocross, but I definitely have better results in cross.  Continue reading “DCCX: Arley Kemmerer Interview”


Just Because You’re Crazy Doesn’t Mean You’re Wrong

[ed. note.: Frequent masters category podium finisher Jay Morali was kind enough to pen the following column for ‘In The Crosshairs.’ Think you could do the same? Drop me a note at cxhairs@gmail.com.]

“Cyclocross is a drug! Cyclocross is addictive. It consumes you. It’s a good thing that the season is only a few months long otherwise I might not get anything accomplished around the house or at work.”
-Quote from a local cross racer
Jay Morali just might be ... a little bit crazy. Photo by Demoncats Photography.

Am I crazy? Has racing cyclocross in all this mud messed up my brain? I am only in my second season of racing cross and I have already upgraded most of my equipment. I am riding the new all-carbon Blue Norcross frame with some sweet carbon Easton EC90 Aero tubular wheels. My cyclocross bike is more expensive and lighter than my road bike! Does that make any sense? Cross is a short season and we live in an area where you never really have to get off your road bike during the winter months. Yet, I still can’t get over the fact that I am only running Shimano Ultegra shifters on the cross bike. I wonder if I can convince the wife to let me upgrade to DA?

Am I crazy? My daily schedule is based on the date and time registration opens for local MABRA and MAC races. My desk calendar has the season laid out and my iPhone provides the morning reminder. For an upcoming race, I actually cancelled an important business meeting just so I could be in front of my computer, ready to pull the trigger, as soon as the registration window opened. And tell me I am not the only person who has screamed at their monitor because a slow computer is costing you valuable starting positions! Continue reading “Just Because You’re Crazy Doesn’t Mean You’re Wrong”

Hyattsville CX: Podium Interviews

Adam Driscoll takes the barriers in stride at Hyattsville CX.

Hyattsville CX took place October 11, 2009, at Magruder Park in Hyattsville, Maryland. The course featured fast power stretches joined together by technical bits and off-camber turns. Big engines could gap the competition on the straights, those with exceptional skills could catch back up in the technical sections. We caught up with podium finishers to see how they tackled the day. Continue reading “Hyattsville CX: Podium Interviews”

Hyattsville CX: Mike Birner Interview

Birner wins the hole-shot and hit the barriers first.

Mike Birner made his tough-to-please coach happy October 11 by winning the Men’s Masters Elite race at the first Hyattsville Cyclocross at Magruder Park, Maryland. A lot of times athletes will talk about hearing their coach’s voice while they are competing. I’m assuming this is the case for Birner, who as president of Mid-Maryland Coaching, is his own little voice. In this interview, Mike does a great job breaking down the race and giving some good insight on how to attack a course. 

Thanks for reading.  Continue reading “Hyattsville CX: Mike Birner Interview”

Kelley Acres: Podium Interviews

The Masters Elite descend the flyover.

The MABRA Cyclocross Series dropped in on Chris and Fred Kelley October 4, 2009, to play in their backyard. Talk about a scene that would have driven my grandfather crazy, all those kids with their bikes on his property!

Kelley Acres ‘Cross featured lots of climbing, ridable barriers, and a Euro-style flyover. It was a great day in the country for cross racing. We caught up with some of those on the podium to see how the day went. Thanks for reading.

Note: All photos by Kevin Dillard of Demoncats Photography. Check out more sweet images by Kevin at www.demoncats.com. Continue reading “Kelley Acres: Podium Interviews”

BCA ‘Cross: The Podium Interviews

The Switch-Backs of Hagerstown

The Breast Cancer Awareness Cyclocross Challenge presented by Antietam Velo Club took place Saturday, October 3, 2009. The first race in a weekend doubleheader for the MABRA Cyclocross Series, the course featured several hairpin turns, good off-camber riding, a sand pit made unridable by strategically placed barriers, and a mean little hill. We caught up with the podium finishers in several categories to find out about their day. 

Photos courtesy of Lindsey Hillesheim of The Uff Da! Chronicles.  Continue reading “BCA ‘Cross: The Podium Interviews”

Hyattsville CX: An Interview With Dave Fuentes

Dave Fuentes (Battley Harley Davidson-Sonoma) is an accomplished road racer that started racing cyclocross last season. He has battled this season in the Masters Elite field taking a second place at Charm City Cyclocross, third place at Kelley Acres ‘Cross, and a win at the Breast Cancer Awareness Cyclocross Challenge. With many of the area’s pro/1/2 men racing in Ohio, Fuentes took the opportunity to test his legs in the elite race at the inaugural Hyattsville CX.

Fuentes attacked the power sections. Photo by J. Steen.

It was clear from the outset that the power output that works to Fuentes’ advantage on the road would translate well on the Hyattsville course. In the early laps only one rider, Adam Driscoll (Adventures for the Cure), was able to keep close as Fuentes put in a string of brutal attacks that depleted the field. The pair stuck together for about 45 of the 60 minute race. But after Driscoll lost his chain, Fuentes established a gap and went into time trial mode to seal the victory.

Following the win and podium presentation, while most racers and spectators made their ways back to their cars, Fuentes and his podium-mates stayed at the venue to escort a group of Special Olympics athletes through the course. The race was able to raise close to $3000 for the Special Olympics organization and it was great to see Dave, Adam Driscoll, Patrick Blair and Chris Consorto take the time to help the cause.

Following the race we caught up with Fuentes to ask him about his day. If you are a hardcore roadie that still hasn’t caught the ‘cross bug, pay special attention to this interview. Here is a guy that is still “learning” the sport of cyclocross (50 psi in the Dugasts??), yet winning races and having a blast. Continue reading “Hyattsville CX: An Interview With Dave Fuentes”