The 2016 Colorado Cyclocross Race Directors’ planning meeting took place a few weeks ago with lots of exciting news and changes for the upcoming season. 303 sat down with Without Limits Race Director – Lance Panigutti for a short recap and to talk about their successful bid to host the State Championships.
Lance Panigutti – Without Limits: Typically the cyclocross race directors’ meeting is our one chance to sit down with all the stake holders, set a calendar, and talk through any issues from the previous season. This was the 8th time I’ve personally attended and usually there’s a lot of banter, but not a lot of action to fix issues on the spot. This year was different. Please note that this “get together” isn’t just for race directors, but we had coaches, club leaders, and racers in attendance. Overall the general consensus is that last year’s schedule was “good”, but had a few issues. Moving forward the major changes will be shifting the largest single group “SM4” to their own start time at 8am, moving the MM60+ group later in the morning, and moving SingleSpeed to the morning so we don’t have 3 groups on course at once (ie. In 2015 the SS raced with the SM3 and MM40+3). The other big change to note is that this is the BRAC “recommended” schedule, but all race directors are now free to make changes as they’d like to fit the scope of their event. Calendar wise there was some shuffling of dates, but overall it’s very similar to the 2015 calendar with a few new races/courses looking to come online.
303 Cycling: First off, congratulations on being awarded the 2016 State Championships. Tell us about the 2016 move to Westminster?
Lance Panigutti – Without Limits: Westminster was a course developed by Brian of Boulder Racing back in 2010, and we last ran the event in November of 2013. The course was instantly a fan favorite, who could forget that Grand Staircase as the iconic feature of the course! However, it’s a venue that’s difficult to secure based on the use of the soccer fields and impact to the turf. After a few years of recovery the City was excited to see a race return to the complex, especially the state championships. It’s also the one venue we have that’s truly ideal for a two day championship event.
303 Cycling: What makes Westminster an ideal venue and course, especially for a two day event in December?
Lance Panigutti – Without Limits: The state championships has been run down in Castlerock for the past five seasons. Overall, it was a solid course, but the location was pretty remote even for the Denver crowd, and especially for the Ft. Collins racers. Westminster is probably one of the most central courses for those living in northern Colorado (Ft. Collins), Denver, Golden, and yes, even the Boulder athletes. It has ample parking, is extremely spectator friendly, and we’ll be adding live chip timing for the first time ever at a state champs! When it comes to the course it has a bit of everything; lots of grassy hillsides, some technical dirt (section near the pumphouse), long sidewalk transitions (along the soccer fields), and of course the iconic Grand Stair Case! Mark your calendar for December 10th and 11th, 2016 and hit the stair master this spring!