Hello Everyone, CRCA Members, I just wanted to say thanks to all, for your support throughout the year. 2011 was one to remember: some good some, not so good, but lessons for us all.
We were finally able to have some success in reaching out to the "powers that be" and have a reasonable resolution to the "Red Scare" that is enforcement of the red lights in Central Park, at least, but there remains more we can do with our cycling partners, USAC Clubs of the metro area, NYCC and others, to ensure the safety of all users of Central Park.
The new Board will continue this effort, so keep sending your ideas, thoughts, and most importantly your efforts to make riding in Central Park a better place.
Club racing has never been better in terms of team competition, but also effort is needed to be safe, comply with Park rules at all times, and ensure fairness for all competitors. My biggest concern is that some sub-teams of the CRCA place too great an effort in winning club races, which are training races, and the level of negative racing tactics if not outright overly aggressive riding becomes an obstacles to the great goal of gaining greater fitness at the same time. Nearly 2 decades ago lap times were consistently over a minute faster! Aero wheels, power meters, and teams placing too much emphasis on "Club Championships", rather than State and National Championships, have created much more negative tactics and slower lap times. While more "tactics" are needed, less fitness is required perhaps.
Women's racing was fantastic! More teams, more competition, new winners, and more members performing on a regional, national and international level.
Coaching has been offering more options than ever, and more offerings on racing skill. More members of all categories would benefit with more participation. The Club would benefit as then a more uniform level of skill and racing behavior would result as well. Not only would crashes be reduced, but a sense of common purpose and shared responsibility for all members and the use of Central Park.
The Junior program is healthy and growing! Many thanks to those involved and the creation of the CRCA Development Foundation which will initially focus on the Junior team.
And finally, as we go into holiday season, and looking forward, I very strongly encourage all members, but especially our experienced and worldly older guard, to participate with the Board, and actively assist in making the CRCA even better.
Team Managers, Event Promoters, Category 1 Racers, Coaches (calling all NYC area coaches), imagine the progress possible if we collectively pool our resources, both in education and fund raising, so that the big results and events are not in our past but in our future!
Wheat Thins Criterium, Tour de Trump, Olympic Trials, Wall Street Crit, Citi-Tour, Union Square Crit, NCL Greenwich Village Crit, and the list goes much deeper of races that have come and gone...
Imagine a "Super Team" of CRCA, (Men's Women's Juniors and Masters, (Road, Track, Cyclocross, and other disciplines like MtnBik, Collegiate, triathlon, and even BMX) where efforts are focused on the big picture instead of far too often only in our backyard...its been well over a generation that a Top Junior has risen like George Hincapie (KCC) or Mike McCarthy (CRCA) to Professional ranks. Evelyn Stevens is on her way to the Olympics and already National TT Champion, thanks to early talent identification at a CRCA Womens Clinic. Lets create more racing opportunities here at home and much further beyond Central Park!!!
Cheers Everyone! I salute your dedication and passion for the sport of cycling!
I look forward to what the futures holds for CRCA!!!
And here's to the new Board of Directors, who volunteer their time, in an already demanding NYC evironment, family, work, other activities...we all need to support and participate to make CRCA better.
See you all soon, out on the road,