By Faith Briggs
Photos by Gritchelle Fallesgon
“Chris is coming by The Athletic to pick up socks for a race. Ask him about it, it’s the kind of thing you’d be into.”
This is the information that led to me riding to an undisclosed location on a Friday night, after waiting for the location to be posted the day before via a closed Instagram account.
Jeremy was right, this is exactly my jam. Unsanctioned, no points, no times, nothing official, just the glory of a moment and hopefully a cold beer at the end. I’m used to this kind of event in a running context, some of my favorites are from unsanctioned races in NYC hosted by Orchard Street Runners.
I have to admit, I was a little intimidated walking into something similar in cycling, a new world to me. Turns out, the vibe is super similar. As soon as I arrived on the scene I was greeted with smiles and hellos by a big group of strangers and their bikes.
I left my bike to go say hello to the few people recognized. Are you racing? I ask. “Yea, I’m riding bikes!” comes the answer.
“You want to race, we can find you a bike!” says a woman who rides up behind me. She’s never seen me before, but I’m there so she’s pumped to get me riding. I learn later her name is Carley from team Non-Stop. Moments later she’ll be lined up with the WTF (Women Trans Femme) race, which is 17 women strong!
“No way!” is my response, excusing myself as a newbie who is not ready to race, but by the end of the night, I’m totally thinking about it. It looks like so much fun and judgment-free. Everyone is cheering and after the sun sets it’s just bright lights ripping through a DIY racecourse including handmade jumps and lined with caution tape.
Here’s some dope pics from Gritchell. Thanks for the invite Broken & Coastal.
There’s one race left in the summer series. It goes down on Friday, June 1st. You’ll have to follow @cobraracingpdx for the details. And yes, that is someone hiding inside the barrier.