Racers wait at the start-line for their qualifying run
Is this the beginning of a proper criterium race in Jakarta? We sure hope so.
This past April on the first Tuesday of the month, 5th April 2016, the Temple crew had the chance to attend the first Crazy Crit evening criterium race at JIEXPO, Kemayoran. The event consisted of an open-track session, several qualifying laps, which were used to seed participants, and 3 races consisting of 7, 10, and 15 laps, with the slowest qualifiers in the 7 lap race and the fastest qualifiers in the 15 lap race. Registration was a reasonable Rp50,000. To make things interesting not only were prizes awarded to the top 3 finishers of all races but the top 10 finishers in each race were awarded points that would accumulate over the season for further special awards and prizes. Yes, I said season. The intention is for CrazyCrit to become a regular event, possibly a monthly event or even more frequent if the demand is there.
The Crazy Crit Jakarta founders
Crazy Crit Jakarta was started by a group of cycling enthusiasts who are deeply committed to the sport of cycling and have a desire to raise the level of cycling experience and ability in Jakarta and Indonesia. After racing overseas against bule they were impressed by how much higher the average cycling ability is in countries such as Australia that have a much more developed and mature cycling culture. Spurred on by a desire to see the same level of ability and competition in Indonesia they founded Crazy Crit Jakarta as a regular event where cyclists of all skill levels can come and step up their skills on the bike.
“Some of us who have been exposed to racing abroad and smarter training, such as with power meter, would like to share this knowledge with other riders. Cycling in Jakarta is still relatively new. Basically, we want to educate riders about the technical aspects of cycling. It could be as simple as learning the basics of pedaling technique”.
-Edo Bawono, one of the founders of Crazy Crit Jakarta, cycling fanatic, amateur racer
The technical 1.03 kilometer track consisted of 5 corners. The first corner was a fast sweeping 90-degree right hand corner leading to a short sprint to a decreasing radius right hand u-turn. This second corner was a tricky corner to get right as you had to go wide through the first half of the turn and then aggressively cut right to clip the apex on exit, thus allowing you to carry as much speed as possible as you exit the corner. This was followed by another short straight into the tightest (maybe scariest) corner of the course, a tight 180-degree left hand u-turn with some rough asphalt for good measure. After a short straight you hit the fastest corner of the course, a double apex sweeping right hander which you can take at full speed and keep the cranks turning for the final straight leading up to the last corner. The last corner is a standard 90-degree right hand turn, which you can take at full-speed. From there the finish line was a short sprint away so as soon you could start to get the bike upright you were back on the power.
The racing was fast and exciting. Temple’s own Bryan Cockrell decided to test his mettle against some of Jakarta’s finest cyclists and came away with a surprise podium finish in the 7-lap race (the race for riders with the SLOWEST qualifying times).
“It’s been a while since I’ve done a crit because I find them terrifying. This time wasn’t any less hair-raising but the track was very well thought out and the racing was gentlemanly while intense. The format of using qualifying times to seed riders into their appropriate categories is super because it allows you to race against others of similar ability. This makes the racing in any category competitive and interesting to watch for the spectators. I would definitely recommend anyone to try crit racing as it is a great way to improve your cornering and bike handling skills while gaining racing experience”.
-Bryan Cockrell, Temple crew
Other noteworthy mentions would be our man from New Zealand, Daniel Douglas. Having the engine of a steam train our local Kiwi easily qualified for the 10-lap race. However, a flat tire relegated him to the back of the pack where he would go on to do 5 more laps to finish the race. Did I mention he was on a flat tire? He would then join the 15-lap race for riders with the fastest qualifying times and hang with the pack until the end. A true display of grit and determination made all the more fantastic by the fact he had was using an 11-speed cassette in a 10-speed groupset…..
If you are new to cycling or a die-hard veteran we would suggest you check out the next edition of Crazy Crit Jakarta for a chance to go crank-to-crank with some of Jakarta’s fastest and most passionate cyclists. This time around the event was missing representation from the female riders but let’s hope that for the next race there will be enough women to warrant having a female class.
If you would like to learn more about Crazy Crit Jakarta you can check out their website here: www.crazycrit.com and Temple will be sharing more info about the next race scheduled for 24th May.
We hope that you will come out to participate to make Crazy Crit Jakarta a regular event and support the cause to further develop the level of cycling in Jakarta and Indonesia!
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