Valentin Scherz rides to a strong fifth place at the Whitmore's Landscaping Super Cross Cup.  ?Tom Olesnevich

Swiss star Valentin Scherz is returning to defend his MAC title this season © Tom Olesnevich

’Cross season is upon us and the MAC Series is getting things started. Following closely on the heels of Nittany Cross, the first UCI cyclocross race in the world this season, is Charm City Cross. Both Charm City, along with Granogue, have gone all-in this year as both expand to full weekends of racing. As races and series begin across the country, Cyclocross Magazine will be providing coverage across the country, and the world, all season long.  Let’s get it started.

The Charm City Cross UCI weekend is September 18 and 19. Over 1,200 racers are expected to toe the line at this early season classic. Charm City Cross, promoted by C3: Athletes Serving Athletes has become one of the highlights of the Mid-Atlantic season as it annually acts as a crossroads of the region, bringing together the best from the southern part of the area to race against those from the north. The second and third races of the Mid-Atlantic Cyclocross (MAC) Cup, one of the nation’s most competitive and deep series, Charm City Cross will attract the best and brightest of the East Coast.

Race Director Kris Auer commented, “The race has been growing organically for five years now. Our vision was to always be a two-day event, and 2010 was the year to make that happen.” Course designer Chris “Sven” Nystrom, renowned for his flowing and technical courses, is excited at the challenge of designing two unique courses for the weekend’s races. “This is going to be a wonderful weekend, and we expect that true ’crossers will love the courses. We are stoked for the new technical features we are working in for day two,” Nystrom added.

The Elite fields will draw some of the country’s top riders, including 2009 MAC Series Champions Valentin Scherz and C3: Athletes Serving Athletes’ own Laura van Gilder. Scherz and van Gilder will look to build the defense of their MAC Cup titles, as well as solid foundations for return tickets to the World Championships.

Charm City Cross offers racing for all levels from first time ’crossers to the afternoon’s UCI-sanctioned races. The event will highlight the best of Baltimore as Heavy Seas Brewery will be on hand, and the afternoon’s Little Belgian kid’s races offer something fun for the wee ones.

Charm City Cross is sponsored by Twenty 20 Cycling Company, Blue Competition Cycles, Specialized, Cole Wheels, Connex chains, Heavy Seas Brewery, Hostetter Agency, Osprey Packs, Tifosi, Challenge and Mad Alchemy.

More information can be found at twenty20cyclingcompany.com and bikereg.com.