With $5000 in cash and prizes on the line, a state champ jersey, a drum line, beer tent and more fun than one can fit into a weekend, the California ’cross season comes to a resounding finale for riders in the golden state as the Nor Cal vs. So Cal State Cyclocross Championships takes place January 20th, in Bakersfield, CA. The event came to fruition about 10 years ago in the mind of Sam Ames (race director) as a way to bring riders from the state together to celebrate ’cross, have a bit of a throw down, but mostly have a good time. “We have a fantastic venue and course. I wanted to share it with as many riders and fans as I could. I love ’cross so I wanted to create a big, cool event and celebrate the deep talent California has in the sport” says Ames. “I used to go north way back then, that was the only ’cross racing. I’d think nothing of driving to Santa Cruz for a Sunday race, get beat to death and come home and wish I could share my stomping ground with other riders. ’Cross has grown so much in all parts of the state, it was time to bring this thing to life!” Along with partner Keith Barnden, SAMBARN promotions and the Kern Wheelmen Bicycle Club is hosting the two day event. Hart Park is the location which has a world class ’cross course and venue and has hosted ’cross races since 1991. “This course can be prepared many ways and serves up a whole lotta pain. We like courses that balances rider vs. rider and rider vs. course. I think we found a nice balance of the terrain for the showdown race. Things will be nice and green and we’ll deliver a great product” Sam said. Last year’s race saw an appearance by Andy Jacques Maynes and Gina Hall along with several other high profile riders from both regions. “Great course!” was Andy’s first words off the bike.