Jeremy Powers on his way to a two win weekend at Cycle-Smart International. © Cyclocross Magazine
by Molly Hurford
We spoke to a very relaxed and happy Jeremy Powers a couple of weeks ago to catch up and find out exactly what he’s been up to over the summer, and about his latest business venture with Behind THE Barriers TV, set to take off this season.
It was recently announced, after much speculation, that Powers would be staying on the Rapha-Focus team, albeit a pared down version with only him, Zach McDonald and Gabby Durrin (née Day). “I was very comfortable there, and I’ve had the most success on the bike there, and they’re excellent people to work with. All the guys, everyone who makes this team what it is, they do a great job. And they wanted to hang on to this program moving forward, and they came to the table. They made it possible. It’s exciting.”
Rapha is also sponsoring several races this year, including StarCrossed in Seattle next week. “What they do is that they single out events that are awesome, to use that word again, that they really love and want to support. Races that are in their style, how they see cyclocross and how they want to reward those events for being excellent. I’ll definitely do StarCrossed and Tokyo. It’s all good stuff.”
“I’m just hunkering down, doing a lot of training right now,” he said, during one of his training breaks at mechanic Tom Hopper’s house in Colorado, where he was getting ready for the Tour of Alberta, where he put on a great show, even taking the “Most Aggressive Rider” title one day.
But perhaps more interesting that Powers’ team announcement was the introduction of his latest pet project, a seriously expanded Behind THE Barriers, with shows for every day of the week and race highlight videos. It’s a bit different from years past but for fans of the original, that won’t be going away, and Powers’ antics will still be on display all season long.
“Last year we were thinking about how we could improve. We asked Colt (McElwyne, formerly of Cyclicng Dirt) if he was still into doing race coverage. We decided to ask him to come into Behind THE Barriers and do more of a race coverage type thing, show more of everyone and less of just ‘Jeremy,’ so you could see some of the action. We have a lot of print media but we lack in quality video media. Then we started talking to all different companies and people and decided to go all in and do a full recap show, eight minute recaps of men’s and women’s races both race days. We wanted to provide a high-quality professional level of coverage, video-wise. So that’s what out goal is.”
“We’ll have multiple commentators and professional level coverage. All these different people we have lined up to do coverage, commentate and showcase the aces. So that’s what we’ve got brewing.”
As for the cyclocross season in the US, Powers is feeling confident that this year will be a great year for growth. “With the USGP dissolving and the coming of the Pro CX stuff, that’s huge. I think that’s great for us. If someone wants to come in and start a race series, great, and I think USA Cycling putting money to that and having an overall prize for the Pro CX, that’s huge, for men and women.”
His overall plan for the season is to focus on the C1 races in the US for the Pro CX series, fewer World Cups in Europe than years past, with an eye towards a good result at Nationals before heading back to Europe. “I’m not going to overdo it again,” he laughed. “Not going to fly three times to Europe again. I expect I’ll have a break at some point, and I want to go out firing strong and keep that standing and ranking, like I did last year.”
Stay tuned for more exciting news from Behind THE Barriers TV as the camera crew heads into StarCrossed and CrossVegas!