Cypress was first taken on a bike ride when he was three days old. Since then, he has been riding his whole life and started racing mountain bikes when he was ten years old. Now, Cypress races a demanding schedule in both mountain and cyclocross disciplines of the sport. He is also very involved with his community and volunteers many hours for organizations each year. A Freshman at Brevard College in North Carolina, he is the current MTB XC and STXC D2 Collegiate National Champion.
|Favorite Race||Mount Sainte Anne WC|
US Cup East #3May 2, 2013
It's always good to get that first race of the year out of the way. The course at Fort Yargo State Park was made up of mostly smooth, twisty trails. They were a blast to ride, but didn't make for a course that anybody would be able to get away on. Gaps would be hard to open, and probably even harder to close.
As the race started I was right about where I wanted to be in the pack. When the course narrowed down to single track, seemingly all of a sudden I found myself sliding on the ground. While everyone in the race sped by I tried to get back up and riding as quick as possible. It looked like it would be a long day of chasing. After a little while I began to pick off a few people that had been shed off the back early.
Coming close to the end of the first lap, I was hammering one of the few open sections of the course. As the trail went right near the edge of the lake I heard some honking close by. Looking over, I see a goose starting to take flight and aimed directly at me. If my heart rate could have gone any higher at that point I'm sure it would have.
Rain throughout the night had dramatically changed the course. Corners that seemed to have endless traction the day before were now incredibly slick. With continued rainfall the conditions worsened as the race went on. For most of the race I seemed to be out there all by myself. Coming into the finish I was a few minutes behind the lead group that had stayed together for the entire race. I'm looking forward to being able to race again next weekend where I hope to have a little better luck in the start and most likely won't be attacked by an angry goose mid race.
Nove Mesto de Morave World CupMay 14, 2012
Nove Mesto de Morave World Cup
The Nove Mesto race course may be my favorite racecourse. Or at least my favorite to ride. The track had lots of steep climbs and rad descents, as well as some super cool man-made technical sections. Rain the morning before my race changed the course from quite dry to perfectly tacky ground and slick roots.
My start performance was quite lacking as I quickly fell far back in
the field up the first climbs. I was back in the sixties half way
through the start loop before I got it into gear. I started making up
places quickly at this point and was back up to mid forties by the
beginning of the first normal lap. From here I slowly moved up
throughout the race finishing in 27th.
I felt pretty good for getting off the plane a few days before. Really looking forward to racing in La Bresse next weekend.
Whiskey 25April 30, 2012
Coming into the day as the current course record holder for the 25 mile race I came in pretty confident. The race starts out with about four miles of pavement climbing up to where we hit dirt road and shortly after the first single strack. After taking the holeshot handily I settled in with Sepp Kuss and Justin Mann trading off the work at the front. Getting to the steeper climbing on the pavement, the three of us separated from the rest of the field. Once we got onto the single track Sepp and I quickly dropped Justin. Sepp was hammering up all of the early single
track climbing, and getting small gaps on the downhill sections.
Soon enough he was out of sight on the twisty Prescott trails.
Reaching the low point of the course I didn't know how far up Sepp was but there was over five miles of fire road climbing ahead of me to try and make it up. About half way up I got a split that he was 1:20 ahead. Then near the top, just under a minute. I gave it everything I had to the top knowing I would have some recovery on the coming downhills. As it is just about all downhill back into town from the high point I was pushing hard whenever I had the chance. Coming close to the end of the single track theres almost a mile of steep loose climbing known as cramp hill.
Coming to the top of this I could see Sepp just ahead. Catching up with him we road the rest of the trail together and most of the downhill road to the finish.
Less than a mile from the finish I launched my attack. I got a small gap and it was just enough to hold it off till the finish.
Finishing eleven seconds ahead of Sepp I was just under two hours for the race. This set a new course record by over 17 minutes!
Sea Otter Cross CountryApril 26, 2012
Cat 1, 17-18
The race started much faster than last year with Tobin taking the
holeshot and stringing out the whole field on the track. Once we reached the dirt I had decent position, but things weren't slowing down any. Getting into the first single track things had settled in a little, and Lucas and I were riding together in fourth and fifth.
From there we worked together until we got to the feed zone about half way through the lap.
On the singletrack following the feed zone I bridged up to Keegan and Jacob who were in second and third at the time. I ended up taking a long pull, and soon we were onto the last fire road climbs to the finish. On the last of the rolling hills I attacked, dropping Jacob, but not quite loosing Keegan. At this point we still didn't know how far up Bryan was in the lead. Once we could see him up ahead on the last climb, we started to work together a little to try to catch him. Dropping me, Keegan went up and caught Bryan near the top of the last climb. Then the final decent into the finish I passed Bryan, after he had dropped his chain, to end up in second.
For being my first race of the season I was really excited to have
such a good result. It was nice to see everyone else on the team do great as well, and now its back home for the Whiskey Off-Road next weekend.
The cyclocross world championships courseJanuary 26, 2012
The cyclocross world championships course is kinda like playing in a giant sand box. Except for its a lot more fun. Luckily there's been plenty or recent precipitation to make just about all of it rideable. But by no means has it made it easy.
Whether it's a good course for me is a good question. I feel like I can ride the sand better than a lot of the other guys out there, but that's not all of the race. Starting further back in the field it may be about anticipating mistakes of the people around me more so than my own mistakes. It's slower and more taxing to run many of the sections, but nobody will ride everything clean. Maybe for a lap, but not a whole race, especially if you aren't at the front.
About all of the non-sandy sections are fast and flowing. But if you're hitting all of the sand hard you won't be able to attack these straights all the time. It's kind of odd to think about sitting up a little at these times, but it may be faster to do so how I see the course. As long as I'm riding the sand smoothly and running at the right times I think I'll be able to get a good result.
Hoogerhiede World CupJanuary 25, 2012
1-22-12 - Hoogerhiede, Netherlands
After reasonably smooth travel back to Belgium, I felt I was about
ready to race as I could be after traveling across the world.
The course was super fun to ride the day before the race. Lots of
flowy corners and couple wooded sections. The track wasn't quite as fun to race though. Sections of the course were very heavy mud, with many of the corners starting to get blown out. With just about the best field you can get, the race was brutal.
I held my own in the start, but seemed to have enough bad luck in the first lap for a couple races. People weren't just making aggressive passes, they were making stupid ones. Someone would crash and take me out or put their spokes over my foot, jamming us together. After the first lap things went more smoothly. I started making my way back up through the field
slowly for the rest of the race.
I didn't feel too bad, but things definately could have gone smoother.
Hopefully everything will come together next weekend.
USA National ChampionshipsJanuary 11, 2012
1-7-12 - Madison, WI
Category: Junior 17-18
Race day came around and I was feeling pretty good about the frozen mud ruts on the course. I was glad to have the second call-up as I figured the selection would happen quite early, as it had all year. The whistle blew, and I found myself rimming out on the pavement as I was trying to sprint.
With way too little air in my front tire I started going backwards in
the field. It was much better once we were on the dirt, but still really sketchy in the corners. After being back in the twenties by the first pit, I got my second bike in the next pit with some more tire pressure. By this time I was up to tenth and feeling really good.
Through the next couple of laps I worked my way up into the top five. Near the beginning of the final lap I bridged the gap to Tobin in second on the climb. Coming around him at the top I was hoping to get a gap before coming to the finish. A little later he came back around me and lead over the barriers and through the second pit. Taking him back in a corner before the sand pit, I was thinking I would be able to drop him on the last climb.
Not able to get away, we came onto the finish straight together. I
didn’t have an option but to lead out the sprint. It was close, but Tobin came around right before the line wrapping up second. I was very happy with a third place finish, and hopeful that it will grant me a position on the World Championships team.
After being in EuropeJanuary 5, 2012
After being in Europe three previous times to race bikes, I thought I knew what I was in for. The first part of the journey across the world turned out better than any of the previous trips. On what we were told was to be a full flight, I ended up with three seats to myself. With all of those pillows and blankets for the entire row, I was able to sleep incredibly well. This, I thought, would be key to racing well at the beginning of the trip and getting onto the European time zone right away. Arriving in Belgium in the morning, I had a whole day to get settled in, bikes unpacked, and a little ride before our race at the Namur World Cup on Sunday.
The racing started off, diving right into a course nothing like anything that is seen in the United States. Consisting of many long steep drops into sharp corners, a long off-camber section, and many steep and unrideable climbs, the course was like nothing I had ever ridden on a cross bike before. And thanks to lots of recent rain, and snow the morning of the race, it promised to be an interesting first mud race of my season. After a horrible start I made my way up through the field by riding all of the technical sections well. Even though I didn’t seem to have all the airplane out of my legs yet, I was able to do decently well thanks to the challenging nature of the track. One place out of the money on the day, I came across the line in 16th.
After Namur, there wasn’t any racing for the juniors until the Diegem Superprestige the following Friday. But instead of getting ready for the coming race, most of us ended up getting sick. Luckily, the illness only lasted about a day for each of us. Depending on when we got it, we were coming into Diegem with various amounts of confidence on how well we would be able to perform.
One of the longest running Belgian races, the Diegem Superprestige is a night race within the town of Diegem. The course is quite unique as it includes lots of paved and cobble streets throughout sections of the lap. Drawing large crowds, the race also attracted a large UCI Junior field of nearly eighty racers. Coming into the race soon after being sick was tough mentally more than anything. I felt that I was about fully recovered from the illness, but had to convince myself that this was indeed the case come race time. Finishing in 32nd may not have been the best possible result for me, but I was pleased with it given the circumstances.
Starting off the Christmas week, Diegem was the first of many races to be held around the holiday. After some of the riders had raced in Balagem on Sunday, my next race was at the World Cup in Huesden-Zolder. Much drier than the previous races, most of the course was fast ad flowly, but still had some slick corners and two muddy drops. Following last year’s disastrous performance on the very icy circuit, I had great confidence of doing better in some different conditions. However, the night and morning before the race I started to have some digestive problems. I don’t imagine burping up sulfur throughout the race helped my performance much. In a much smaller class than the previous race, I finished 18th. With one race left before returning home, I was hoping that all of the adversity had been dealt with.
Loenhout, my last European race in 2011, would be an enjoyable one. Having raced this track the year before, I was looking forward to the extremely fun course. What on first glance appears to be an open flat field actually makes an incredible race. Many added features, some of which include a flow section, some jumps, and a massive rideable flyover, add to the excitement for both the spectators and the racers. With another large field, the race was very exciting, as you always seemed to be with at least one other racer. In the end I lost the sprint for top twenty, and placed 21st.
All done with my racing, it was time for packing up bikes and all before an early morning departure for the airport. When arriving at the check-in counter I was greeted by the same woman who had checked me in the year before. How many people does she see in a year to be able to remember me? After a little conversation she asked for my autograph to give to her son, who was a big cyclocross fan. In return, she gave me a free upgrade on the flight! Following a more enjoyable flight than normal, I was home and unpacking my bags. A couple days later, I was once again packing them up, along with my bikes to go back onto the plane bound for Nationals in Wisconsin.
GVA Trophy Azencross LoenhoutJanuary 3, 2012
12-28-11 - Loenhout, Belgium
The last race of the year for me was for sure going to be a fun one. Having raced in Loenhout the year before, I already knew how fun the course was. Not too often do you see what used to be simply a flat field turned into an incredible cyclocross course. With lots of added features the course has got to be one of the most fun courses in Belgium to race.
Some stairs, a massive rideable flyover, a section of whoops, a section with a couple good jumps, and much more add to the spectator attraction as well. It is also one of the biggest non-UCI Junior races of the year as well.
With about eighty starters the start was quite important. Especially as off of the pavement, the course funneled right into the muddiest section of the course, where chaos would be sure to ensue. At least I wouldn't be able to do any worse than last years start. With a crash just off of the pavement I ended up fourth from last at the next corner. This year was much better however. With another second row start position thanks to UCI
points I went into the mud within the top 15. With the large field there was always at least one person to battle it out with.
Through the race different small groups seemed to form and soon blow up, only to reform again with a couple different members. On the last lap there were three of us together fighting for 19th place. I was sitting third in this group for most of the lap. Nearing the end of the lap, I passed both of the other races by gaping a large double as they both pumped through it. A got a small gap on the following straightaway, only to lose
it in the corners before the pit. Messing up in a sloppy corner
before a short running section, I lost both the gap and a place. The guy in front of us ended up finding a way to get a small gap that he took to the finish, leaving the two of us to sprint it out for the last place inside top 20. I came into the long finish straight in front and ended up going to early, and was over-taken at the line.
This was probably the most enjoyable race I have done all season. It seemed the spectators were out in full force even for the Junior race really making the atmosphere a little more intense than normal.
Hopefully Nationals, coming next weekend, will be just as great of a race.
Deschutes Brewery CupDecember 13, 2011
Deschutes Brewery Cup
12-10/10-11 - Bend, OR
Category - UCI Junior
Results - 5th, 4th
This weekend I flew out to Oregon for the final weekend of the USGP to race against a very small class. Though the class only had 9 or 10 racers, the top end of the class was still present.
Both days went in a similar fashion with a selection being made almost right off the start. Throughout the races different people attacked and dropped off of the group, but large gaps never formed within the top 5. The first day I was only a few seconds out of fourth and twenty out of third.
And the second day was very similar, as I placed fourth a little over twenty second out of second.
I'm starting to feel like I have good form in the races now and am
looking forward to racing in Belgium the next couple weeks. Hopefully I will be able to achieve some good results while I am overseas as well as afterwards when I come back for the national championships.
Cincinnati Cyclocross FestivalNovember 7, 2011
Cincinnati Cyclocross Festival
11-5/6-11 - Cincinnati, OH
Category: UCI Junior
Results: 5th, 3rd
I've been looking forward to this unique race weekend for a little
while now. Each of the three days of racing was held at a different park and a very different style of racing each day.
Day one, which I didn't race, was either steep up, steep down, or
off-camber. The difficulty of this course was really shown as all but eight riders were lapped in the elite race. Day two was full of fast corners and lots of flow. And day three ended the weekend with long power-sapping climbs with some technical corners, a couple sand pits, and a few mud bogs thrown in.
My first race of the weekend started out a little slower than I had
wanted it to. I was about mid pack off the start, and moved up a few places quickly, but not fast enough. A group of three had already separated itself from the rest of the pack a few corners in. Soon I was in a chase group of about six riders. I was doing a lot of pulling for the group, maybe more than I should have, to bridge the gap the the lead group. Later on, our group was down to three riders and the leaders had split apart. The last couple lap the three of us were fighting for fourth place. I ended up
two seconds off in fifth, with five seconds behind me to the sixth place rider.
Coming to the final day of the weekend, I knew I would need to have a good start to have a chance at a podium finish. Having the start I was looking for, I was sitting in fourth place. But after a few corners in I found a mud covered root in a part I hadn't been able to pre-ride. Going down I lost about ten spots, and would have to work my way back up the whole race.
I tried to stay calm and make good passes when I had the opportunity. With two laps to go, I had made my way to fighting for fourth with Jordan once again. I was following him really close, which turned out to be bad when he crashed in the same corner I did at the start, and I didn't really have any other choice but to lay it down and ram into him. I got up first and got a
gap through the next tough corners and climb. At this point I was
getting close to third place as well, and could see him running the sand pit in front of me. Riding the sand, I caught onto Curtis' wheel after the next corner. I rode with him for about half a lap before I made my move.
For about the last lap and a half I rode alone, extending the gap behind me securing my podium finish.
Overall, it was a great weekend of racing. Next weekend I'll be in
Louisville for the next stop of the USGP of Cyclocross and racing on what is planned to be the world championships course for the following year.
May 2, 2013
May 14, 2012
April 30, 2012
April 26, 2012
January 26, 2012
January 25, 2012
January 11, 2012
January 5, 2012
January 3, 2012
December 13, 2011
November 7, 2011