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The Complete Book of Cyclocross, Skill Training, and Racing

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In recent years, the sport of cyclocross has experienced a renaissance in it's popularity. Because of this renewed interest, a majority of bike manufacturers are now making cyclocross bikes. This was not the case five years ago.

Now in it's second edition, The Complete Book of Cyclocross, Skill Training and Racing by Scott Mares addresses the different requirements, skill sets, and racing unique to the sport of cyclocross. The book also provides special cross drills and techniques to promote skill and intervals specific to cyclocross.

With over a 100 pages of new content, Mares has added detailed skill drills that have never been published before. Combining step by step descriptions with detailed photos and diagrams of skill drills, the book offers simple yet thorough explanations from the basic skills of barriers, bike handling, and bunny-hopping to more advanced techniques of handling difficult course conditions. The book explains each drill in a way that is easy to understand and implement.

Racing tactics and equipment are also a major portion of the book. In the racing section, the author discusses race preparation and different race course tactics and explains when and when not to apply them. Be sure to check out the "Tricks and Tips" section which has personal tactics from racers across the U.S.  As an added bonus, USAC and UCI Cyclocross rules are also included.

The Complete Book of Cyclocross, Skill Training and Racing  also contains a few chapters on how to grow the sport in your own community. The American Cycling Association (ACA) has been very successful on growing Junior Cyclocross through their camps and Mud Skipper program. The book gives detailed guidance on how to create and run your own cyclocross camp and junior cyclocross program. 

About the Author

Interbike 2009. Photo by Inge Wortman.Scott Mares was born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and started racing his bicycle when he was in high school. An active racer in the community throughout his junior years, Scott attended New Mexico Military Institute, graduating with a Liberal Arts degree. He went on to the University of Oklahoma where he earned a degree in Sports Sciences with a minor in Microbiology.

While attending the University of Oklahoma, Scott worked in the Pulmonary Function Blood Gas Lab at University Hospital. During this time, he also became a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and was invited to be a cyclocross athlete at the Olympic Training Center (OTC) in 1994.

In 1996, Scott completed an internship for the US Olympic Committee (USOC) during the Atlanta Games Super Camp. After graduation, Scott relocated to become part of the cycling community in Colorado Springs, CO.


StarCrossed 2009. Photo by Inge Wortman.After racing cross in Colorado, Scott put together local cyclocross clinics for his cycling buddies and the word soon got out about his skill drills. Scott then received a call from his buddy Jim Copeland asking him to come and help out at the first ACA Jr. Cyclocross camp in Deckers, Colorado. Jim asked Scott to be a coach at the camp, but at the time, Scott only focused on teaching skills. Copeland told him, “That’s perfect!” Upon arriving at camp that morning, Jim informed Scott that he was the man in charge.

When the first edition of the book was published, Scott had served 9 consecutive years as the head cyclocross camp coach. The ACA cyclocross camps were free to kids, initially starting out with 50 juniors the first year to over 140 kids by 2007, making it the largest junior cyclocross camp in the world.

Scott currently resides in Portland, OR, which is one of the major cyclocross hotbeds in the United States. He teaches Cross Academy and actively races in the local criterium and cross scenes.