Red Hook Crit Milan – The season finale
This weekend saw the Red Hook Crit season finale take place in Milan, the last of four international fixed gear races that I’ve geared much of my training around in 2017. Though Red Hook Crit London in 2015 was the first time I ever raced a fixed gear crit, Milan is actually where things really started for me as it was here that I first came to watch the race and inspired by what I saw, wondered whether I could ever be inside the barriers rather than spectating.
One of the things that struck me then was the enthusiasm of the crowd and their support for everyone who was racing, no matter where they were in the race. I saw hundreds of people cheering on every woman that passed them, thrumming on the barriers, ringing cowbells and cheering not just the race leaders but every person brave enough to put themselves out there. Wandering around the rider pits it was very different to the subdued atmosphere at road criterium, where folks keep themselves to themselves and play it cool.
I’ve since discovered that the wild, fun, fiercely supportive Red Hook Crit audience is something you’ll find nowhere else. At every venue – Brooklyn, London, Barcelona and Milan – the crowd are magnificent and make you feel like a proud warrior and it really puts a smile on your face. But Milan, filled with committed ‘tifosi’ enjoying bike racing along with their panini are the biggest, loudest and most enthusiastic. Competitors line the streets five deep, jostling to get a good position and their cheering really does make you go faster. It’s a really special place to race, as I found out last Saturday.
My latest video follows my race day from morning to noon so check it out below if you’d like to know more about fixed crit racing and find out how I got on. Click here to subscribe to my YouTube channel – it’s free and you’ll be notified of all my new videos.