World Cup Countdown – The Brits: Jody Crawforth


Former British Champion Jody Crawforth (Hargroves Cycles) back in the World Cup fray at Milton Keynes and in form

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World Cup Countdown – The Brits: Jody Crawforth

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One of Britain’s top cyclo-cross male riders for a decade or longer, Jody Crawforth has been in great form this season and his reward is a spot among the World’s Elite in the Milton Keynes Cyclo-Cross World Cup.

Jody explained that he had a word with his team boss, one of the sports top supporters in Pete Hargroves of Hargroves Cycles. “He spoke to Stuart Blunt (GB coach) and so I knew I had to get some podiums in the build up to the selection so I am really pleased to get a ride”.

“I’m really looking forward to the World Cup and just getting stuck into the race! If they can put some planks inside the beer tent that I’m able to bunny hop over that would be good!” Jody added he’s looking forward to seeing the steps being built on the course, a special feature for the event, he’ll definitely have a good go at riding them!

The former British champion explained how before the season began, he had a pretty good summer which has helped kick start his ‘cross season. “I changed my training a bit and did a few more road races and crits than I have before and really tried to get some mid week racing in as well which isn’t easy when you work full time”.

“I have been enjoying the form and it is nice to get some of the old form back and I feel like I’m in the races now”.

Jody says that he really appreciates the support of his team Hargroves Cycles – Ridley who have continued to back him despite a few years which have not been great. “I broke my leg a few years ago and struggled to get the form back from before”.

“It is always hard to know whether the form is as good as it was years ago because without running power metres all the time, it’s a bit hard to measure yourself. Paul Oldham has been riding fantastically the last few years and hard to know whether he’s stepped up a level which I think he has and everyone is trying to catch up”.

jody crawforth

World Cups
Jody is not a stranger to the World Cups as he explained. “I have done a number of World Cups and one of my best results was a Swiss World Cup. They are difficult events but Milton Keynes will be more similar to the races I am used to doing”.

“I have done Koksjde before a few times and that’s difficult with the sand because you need to be doing that week in, week out like Ian (Field) is. But I’d like to get a good result at Milton Keynes where a lot will depend on the grid”.

“The fittest people will get through though. When I have had some flying starts before, I’ve been way back and made it up into the top 15 before suffering for it afterwards! The level of the riders and the speed of the race will be something else for the spectators.”

“These top guys really go. You think they are going fast on the first lap but they just get faster. It’s incredible. Hopefully we’ll see a big crowd and it will be interesting to see which riders stay for the racing the next day (National Trophy) as well.”


Winning the British title a career highlight for Jody

Mixing Work and Play
Whilst one of the country’s top cyclo-cross pros, Jody also works full time which means he can’t put as much into the training side as the full time riders in the world. “I have been working full time since 2003 so some of my best performances have been while I have been working.”

“Two and a bit years ago I became a dad as well and that was a massive change so it’s down to time management and fitting it all in. I do my training on the way to and from work. The skills are there so my skills training is racing”.

“Riding a cross bike where I live is pretty rubbish though. There are some places I can go but it’s not great and is muddy in the winter with lots of dog walkers everywhere. But I can go mountain biking on the trails and that is what I prefer to do”.

“I guess I can manage eight to fourteen hours a week including the weekend racing and training”.


Jody and great rival and friend Paul Oldham

The Bike – A Ridley
The final word is on the bike he’ll be riding, a Ridley which is new for 2015 for the Hargroves Cycles team and coming from one of the World Cup supporters in Milton Keyes, the Madison Group.

“They (Ridley ‘cross bikes) are really good” says Jody. “I’d ridden them before and thought they were the best bikes I’d ever ridden and these again are the best. They are so light, really stiff and do everything you need”.

“The frame is full carbon and the weight is important having to lift it over the planks as well as have it on the shoulder running up banks. A heavier bike also feels dead when you are sprinting out of the corners and so you do notice it”.
“They have a nice geometry that is really good and so fit me really well and are nice to carry”. Whilst Jody is keen to have disc brakes on the bike, he realises the logistical problem for the team to change all its wheels to suit and is just as happy with the Shimano cantis. “The Shimano ones are really good” he says adding, ,”I also have Shimano Ultegra 10 speed with a single chain ring (42) set up”.

Jody runs Shimano pedal,s XTR SPDs, the older style ones because he finds them easier to get in and out of. The final piece of the jigsaw on the bike is the all important pieces of rubber front and back. Jody says he has 32mm tyres on the wheels. “They are the best all round size and we use a mixture of Challenge and Dugast. I have Rhinos and Typhoons myself which are very fast”.


Good luck to Jody next weekend …

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