Saturday, December 25, 2010


We have a spent a little bit over a week at the EurocrossCamp in Belgium. It has been very cold, around freezing the whole time. On the rides the roads are either slushy, getting really wet, or super icy, making it hard to stay upright. We have spent time preparing for racing either at the house or out riding.

The first two races I did in Belgium were last Saturday and Sunday. The first race was a local race on an icy farm field and the second race was the Kalmthout World Cup race near Antwerp. On Saturday’s race most of us from the Eurocross Camp had enough UCI points to be called up to the front row. I had a great start and lead the race in the beginning; then I had a mechanical and dropping back a little to finish in third place. At the World Cup, I was called up in the 3rd row, didn’t have a great start but I had a blast in the race. I finished in 44th place, the first American. It was really fun racing with people from all different countries, an orange Dutch guy there, a small blue, red, white French guy there. Fighting against the best of all the different countries. The course was fast, icy, muddy and hilly.

Today is Christmas Eve, we woke up at 8:30am and went for a ride. I did a prep ride along the canal in town. The canal has a pretty cool bike path, but it’s icy and slippery which, is actually great cyclo-cross training combining handling and power. This afternoon there was a trip to the Tour of Flanders Museum. Today we had a special Christmas Eve dinner with the table set very nicely. Some family of the people who are in charge of the house joined us for food and it was a good time. We had a toast (only an Aquarius orange drink for us; champagne for the staff), dinner, and cake for dessert.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Belgium Update

Today marks the one week anniversary of my adventure here in Belgium. Im going to use this post to list the most interesting things that have stood out from my trip thus far.

1). Raced my first race outside of the U.S.
2). Raced my first World Cup
3). Bumped elbows with a Belgian in a World Cup
4). Crashed in my first world cup
5). Ate Speculoos
6). Had my first Belgian pastry
7). Got completely lost on a training ride
8) Tried white Asparagus.

Everybody on the team has their bikes now, and we were all able to pasticipate in the training race. While none of us won and got of the chores we all had a good time, and it was nice to mix up the training a bit.

I did notice some cool Practices here in Belgium that the US should adopt. The coolest thing is the recycling. The Belgians have really got this down. It really to see how much they care about the recycling, and how much the people here do it. Another thing is grocery bags. at the grocery stores if you want a bag you have to buy a reusable one, and most everybody brings bags to the store to reuse. I know I know "they have this already in the states" you say but the the difference here is that the ALL the Belgians reuse their bags, and its comes naturally to them. Anyways its dinner time now, but I will leave with some pictures.
Screen at the World Cup
World Cup Kalmthout
Riding along trail the canal
My Bed for two weeks
One Of the Team USA vans

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Snowy Daze

The whole team arrived last week safe and sound. Bjorn Zane and Kolben safely navigated the Wold Cup in Kalmthout which is a tall order for the second race in Europe.We are looking forward to a little bike scrimage tomorrow with the whole EuroCross Team tomorrow.

Unfortunately no bikes for me yet, but I will have a CX bike to borrow tomorrow and hopefully trusty steads arrive soon. This is is supposedly the biggest snow event they have seen since WWII, they don't plow road hear and the Belgians don't really know how to handle the snow. Flights keep getting canceled because the planes don't have any de-icer which is being delivered but the trucks are stuck on the roads which aren't plowed.

Wings of airplanes curve a when they don't have any more petrol

New Training Bike, note that side walked is plowed better then the road

One Whole Gallon

Check Back soon

Mitch Hoke

Saturday, December 18, 2010

First Day in Izegem

Well day one of racing is done here in Europe. The boys had a successful day. Bjorn finished 4th and Zane and Kolben treated the race as opener and got a couple hard laps in at the front and then took some easy laps. They should be going good for tomorrows World Cup in Kalmthout.

I unfortunately got delayed and put on a train from Frankfurt so i have no bicycles yet.

Check in Later for more pictures and results.


Sunday, December 05, 2010

USGP in Portland

Everyone had great races at the second of the USGP in Portland.

In the mens 15-16 race Jordan Cullen conquered a challenging course to take the win. He looks really strong coming into nationals.

The 17-18 race was dominated by former team member Yannick Eckmann. Zane and Bjorn scored some UCI points coming in 4th and 5th and Kolben came in 7th for another super strong ride

I had the best GP yet finishing 17th.

More photos to come and stayed tuned for updates from US National Championships and from Europe after that.

Mitch Hoke

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Europe Bound

Great news. We are sending 4 riders to Euro Cross Camp this year.

Kolben Preble, Zane Golby, Bjorn Fox and myself will be heading across the pond after nationals to race. You can follow are adventures here and find more info on the camp at

Check back for more.

This weekend the team is off to Jingle Cross in Iowa City followed by rounds 7 and 8 of the USGP at the infamous PIR course in Portland.

Sea you out there
Mitch Hoke

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

New Name Stickers

Check in later for more about this weekends New Belgium Cup!


Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Weekend Update: November 6th and 7th

Jordan Cullen competed in the Behing Bars VeloCross at the National Sports Center in Minneapolis Minnesota, he finished 2nd in the Mens 1/2 field after.

Curtis White got to race one of my favorite races in the states, The Cycle-Smart International in Northampton Massachusetts. On Saturday Curtis fought with a strong group that kept shelling riders until there were just 3 left. Curtis attached on the barriers to get 2nd. Sunday was a little less fruitful as he suffered a 1st lap mechanical but fought his way back up to 9th in a field of over 150 riders.

Bjorn Fox represented Team Clif Bar in California this weekend at the Sacramento Cyclocross Series Race#3 and the Bay Area Super Prestige #2. He finished 2nd in the Elite mens field in Sacramento and 6th in San Francisco.

Spencer Downing and Zach Gould returned to the Boulder Res on Saterday for School House Cross this weekend. Zach got 18th in his first open mens race (which was won by are Clif Bar step teammate Brady Kappius). Spencer really stepped up his game and placed 3rd in the 3's race.

On Sunday Brady and I went for the old Clif Bar oneTwo at the Castle Cross in Castle Rock Colorado.

Bjorn on the Podium

Jordan at VeloCross

Mitch Hoke

Monday, November 01, 2010

Clif Bar at the Boulder Cups

This weekend was Boulder Cups in Colorado and was a great showing by the Clif Bar Development Cross Team.

Saturday was the always challenging Boulder Reservoir course. This year was no different with multiple sections of sand over 50 feet. Zack Gould took his first win in the ACA 3's category after going off the front the entire race with with Michael Dessau. They went in the final couple of turns elbow to elbow, Michael took to hard of line and went down and Zach came through for the victory.

Zane Golby, Kolben Preble and Spencer Downing took on the Junior Mens race. The race was dominated by former Development Team Rider Yannick Eckmann. Yannick road through the enitre single speed and 3's feild but was followed closely by Zane who finished second. Spencer and Kolben also rode to strong 5th an6th place finishes.

I competed in the Elite Mens race and got ride multiple laps with step teammate Allen Kruegoff and finished 27th on the day.

Zack on the Sand Steps

Zane on the Beach

Spencer leading Kolben up the Steps

Mitch in the Dust

Zach on the top step of the Cat 3's Podium

Yannick and Zane on the Junior Mens Podium

The next day was a new venue for the Boulder Cup at the Flat Irons Mall. This course was all about off camber traverse, crashes and run ups.

Instead of competing in the 3's on Sunday Zach decide to join the rest of the team and compete in the Junior Mens race. Again the Juniors started behind the Cat 3's which meant are boys had to move up through the pack. This was very challenging on the off camber sections. Yannick got tangled up with the some riders so Zane was able to take the lead for a while. Eventually he came around and opened up a large gap to the rest of the field. Zane and Zach took the 2nd and 3rd places on the podium. Kolben and Spencer finshed up 6th and 7th.

Zane and Yannick passing Spider MAn



Zach on the Run Up

Mitch Hopping the Barriers

Yannick, Zane and Zach on the Podium

Thanks for reading and supporting the team. Thanks to Hannalore Eckmann for the always amazing photos


Monday, October 25, 2010

Weekend Update: October 23rd and 24th

The Clif Bar Development Team had another successful weekend around the US.

Jordan Cullen and myself made the trek out to Louisville for the 2nd stop of the USGP, the Derby Cup. The race was hot and dry, the first lap resemble more of a dustbowl then a cross race. Despite the weather the folks in Louisville are doing a great job with their new venue that will host the World Championships. Super big thanks to the McShane and Haley families for helping out Team Clif Bar.

Jordan soled off the front both days to win the 2/3s field. Keep in mind this is a 15 year old kicking but in a field of grown men. I fished up 27th and 28th on the days starting from back in the Elite field.

Curtis White stayed close to home and finished 6th in the 1/2 field in Saratoga NY after a hard fought race with big group of chasers.

Kolben Preble got treated to a real muddy race at Cross Crusade # 4 at the infamous PRI in Portland. Kolben fought his way up through the pack to finish 15th, his highest placing in Cross Crusade to date. He has also been working with the promoters of the races in Portland to set up better recycling.

Zack Gould and Spencer Downing were defending Team Clif bar home territory in Boulder Colorado this weekend. Zack had a great ride at Xilinix this weekend finishing 2nd in the 3’s. Spencer placed 20th in the large field.The next day they finished 7th and 16th respectively in the 3’s field at 3rd installment of the Boulder CX series.

Mitch racing in the Louisville dust bowl.

Jordan getting it done of the barriers

Mitch Hoke

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Baker Orchard Cyclocross

Jordan posting up for his first 1/2s victory!

The amazing autumn weather kept up in Wisconsin this weekend. It was the perfect weather for fall cyclocross racing. Jordan Cullen headed north to Centuria, Wisconsin for the Baker Orchard cyclocross race. Jordan had helped setup the course and was able to get the course dialed in the day before the race. At the start line Jordan stood over his bike ready for the gun to go off. Right at the start he was third off the line behind Pat Lemieux and Adam Bergman. After about half of a lap Jordan was in a group of four with himself, Adam, Pat, and Johnathon Toftoy. The group stayed together until a lap later Pat fell off the group and it was down to three. Then, with 7 laps to go Jordan took off solo. He stayed off solo until three laps to go and then Johnathon bridged up to him but shelled Adam in the process. Those two stayed together until one lap to go but, what Jordan had noticed is that Adam was sitting only about five seconds back and Jordan knew that Adam was fast enough to chase up and still win. So going into the first set of barriers Jordan absolutely hammered into them and got a good gap on Johnathon. Then Jordan soloed into the finish in first place. Jordan is very pleased with his victory especially because it is his first category 1/2s race win.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Cross Season Has Begun!

At last autumn is here and cyclocross has started. The race season for Bjorn Fox started with USGP Planet Bike, followed by a Central Coast Cyclocross Race near Monterey, CA, and Sacramento Cross race this past weekend. Now with five races under his belt, he fells more confident about his cyclocross form. Bjorn has the new Ridley X-Fire all built up and racing. Bjorn said, “It was pretty awesome to race at local races with riders like Ben Jacques-Maynes and Justin Robinson.”

Monday, October 11, 2010

Boulder CX Series #1 and #2!!

My cyclocross season just started two or so weeks ago and I am totally psyched to be racing 'cross again! This will be my 4th season on the CLIF BAR Development Cyclocross Team and I am totally stoked! My first race was the Boulder CX Series Race #1 in the Senior Men's 3's at Xlinx down in Longmont, CO! I was feeling really good and was ready to fly off the start line (especially after having an epic crash in my warm up)!! At the start I was in the first row but didn't go to crazy in the begining and was sitting in about 10th place going into a sand pit about halfway through the first lap. I rode through the sand pit as hard as I could and passed about 3-4 racers in each direction! At the end of the first lap I was in 3rd! On the second lap, I really started to get into my groove and passed the second place rider (Michael Dessau) and stayed in second for another lap or so. Shortly there after, I got passed and was riding hard to keep my 3rd place for the rest of the race! I was very pleased with this result given it was my first SM 3's race of the season!

Two weeks later, I did the second race of the series at Interlocken Loop in Superior, CO! The course today was a very hard course!! The mud was not super wet, but really sticky making the course feel like you were riding on velcro. I got off to a good start in the SM 3's but I wasn't having a great day so I started to fade about halfway through the race. I ended up in 15th on the day which I wasn't exactly pleased about but it wasn't terrible either. Huge shout out to ex-CLIF BAR Team Member Yannick Eckmann winning the Pro-1-2 field today!! Really looking forward to the Aspen Lodge CX Race next weekend!!

Thats all for now!

(Photo Credit to Dejan Smaic)

Monday, October 04, 2010

CLIF BAR Rider Partners With Chris King To Indroduce First Ever Recycling Program at the Cross Crusade

This weekend over 1500 racers descended upon the Alpenrose Dairy in Portland, Oregon for the opening round of the Cross Crusade. Among other new things this year were several recycling bins for aluminium, glass, and paper placed near the ever popular Chris King coffee and cider truck. CLIF BAR Development Cyclo-Cross Team rider Kolben Preble, who is the leader of the project Said he saw a problem With the thousands of cups heading to the landfill every weekend and wanted to do something about. Chris King whom also was regretful of the waste created, but didn't have the man power or time to make a solution was happy to join Preble in his cause. For the future both Chis King and Preble hope to grow the program and eventually create a zero waste solution to the waste problem at large races like the Cross Crusades. Look for the black and white bins with the universal recycling logo on them at Cross Crusade number two in Rainier Oregon.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Hudson Cyclocross

Jordan chasing the lead in the 1/2's race

It was the perfect autumn day for a cyclocross race. It was Jordan's hometown race and he felt like he was going to have an awesome day on the bike. Jordan rode to the race which was only about 15 minutes away from his house. When he arrived at the race he could see that the course was very technical and would require a lot of accelerating, which would suit him very well. He rode the course at speed for several laps just to check out the course and to decide what tires would stick to the turf the best. After he had ridden the course a few times, he went to the car to get on the trainer. On the trainer, you could see it in his eyes that he was excited, yet prepared for the race. At the start line, Jordan's body hummed with anticipation for the start. At the sound of the gun, he was third off the line and by the end of the lap, he was off the front with Adam Bergman and Pat Lemieux. By the end of the second lap Adam had gained about a five second gap on Jordan and Pat was about 30 seconds back. The gap stayed at a cool eight seconds between Jordan and Adam until 2 laps to go it opened to 12 and by the finish the gap was 20 seconds but Jordan still managed second with third place a minute back.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Planet Bike Cup

Jordan Cullen showed up to the first USGP of the season with high hopes in his first race for the CLIF Bar Devo Team. On Saturday Jordan lined up to for the start of the 2/3's race very focused and intent on doing well. When the officials fired the gun he was off the line like a race horse. Jordan got the hole shot and had a gap for a majority of the first lap. But nearing the end of the last lap tragedy struck Jordan's race. He slid out in an off camber turn and the race behind him plowed into not only Jordan but his bike. Jordan got up but his bars were twisted, his back wheel was broken, and he had broken both chain stays. He rode to the pit and lost about 20 spots in the process. Once he switched bikes he slowly but surely started to pick off riders and moved all the way up to fourth. From the start on the second day he was about second or third off the line but got within 3 seconds of the leader but then his hood slipped through a rough section of the course. He had to switch to his bike that he had broken the day before which probably wasn't the best idea but he didn't have a choice. Jordan then got caught by two other riders who later shed Jordan with one lap to go. In the end Jordan ended up fourth both days. Jordan was very pleased with the awesome presence the CLIF Bar Team had at the race and was glad to be part of the experience!!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Vegas Baby

Cross Vegas was awesome. Got off to a tough start because there was no PA system at the start. I missed the two minutes to go and was just kinda chilling when the gun went off. Managed to hit the dude in front of me and almost take out Pacho behind me. Got into the swing of things and made it to a group with good friends Travis Livermon and Braden Kapius. I was sitting in the group pretty comfortably for several laps when i looked back and saw a group with Carl Decker and Barry Wicks closing the gap to us. They caught us with about 4 laps to go. The last three laps were extremely hard and really surprised myself with the matches that i had left in the tank, guess I still have some good fitness from MTB season . I got shot off the back with one to go from the group that would contain 18th through 27th place. Still 28th was pretty good considering the strength and size of the field there.

Unfortunately my buddy Travis crashed into a gate in the finishing straight and broke his collar bone. Hopefully it is quick healing one and he will be back form some late season action.

Now i have the annual Colorado College Aspen Bike Trip to look forward to starting on Wednesday. A good friend and myself are leading it so it should be pretty fun. Then it is back to the training plan and a trip to 3 UCI races in Cincinnati Ohio on October 8th.

Cheers and make sure to ride your bike
Mitch Hoke

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Green Mountain Cyclocross NECCS 1 & 2

This past weekend was my first big cross race of the season up in Burlington, Vermont. It seemed like a really fast and dry course. With over 100 guys starting, it was crucial to get to the front. From the gun, there was a selection. By the end of the first lap, Yohan Patry from Canada and I had a gap over the cat. 3 field and the juniors. Every lap, the gap grew. With one lap to go, I dropped my chain. I found out as I tried to sprint out of a corner. By the time I got the chain back on, Yohan had a gap and kept it all the way to the finish. I finished second behind him.
Day two was very similar to day one. A selection was made, this time with Karl Hoppner, again from Canada. We established a gap over the cat 3 field and the juniors. With 2 1/2 laps to go, I tried to bunny hop a log, but failed. Karl got a 10 second gap and was able to hold it for the remainder of the race. Again, I finished second, but I obtained the points leaders jersey with a 15 point lead over Nate Morse, former Clif Bar teammate. Hopefully I can hold the jersey at the next NECCS race!
Day 1- Chasing the lead. Day 2- Chasing, again. Me in the leaders jersey.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Cross, Worlds and Vegas Baby!

Well, it is officially game on. The first cross race of the season never fails to remind me of one thing, cross is real hard. I mean you are either coming off the mountain bike with disc brakes and suspension or the road bike with smooth roads. Then you do an hour long suffer fest on bumps in hot sun. It can't even be cold for the first race. My hands hurt, my back hurts and must of all my skills are hurting.

But the race was pretty awesome. It is always nice to ride from your house to the race. The race was pretty well attended and it was good to have Zane and Brady there. Brady and I rode together off the front until the 3 laps to go then he flatted. I had to ride away with out him. Allen from Boulder Cycle Sport was coming up fast so there was no sitting up.

Our new Ridley X-Fire are pretty dialed. Super stiff frame with good cross geometry. The really cool trick set up we are using this comes from the help of Mavic, Stan’s NoTubes and Clement Tires. Running clincher tires tubeless makes it really easy to race cross and budget while still have multiple tire choices and running low pressure. I was able to us the PDX tire on my Ksyrium Wheels at 32 PSI.

In other news I had a really awesome time at MTB Worlds a couple weeks ago. Some good friends from the East Coast came up to watch and one was even kind enough to shoot and edit some video from his iPhone.

I ended up 40th which I was pretty stoked about.

Now I am mentally preparing for Vegas. I am not so much worried about the race, but more about entering the bizzarro world that is Las Vegas and industry juggernaut know as Interbike. I flew over Vegas once and that was over whelming. No plan to get to and from the airport, so if you see some lost kid in LAS, it is probably me. Cycling Dirt will be streaming the race live.

See you out there
Mitch Hoke

Thursday, August 19, 2010

New Web Site for the Team

Check out our new website in the works that includes info on riders, staff and our sustainability projects for the season.


Monday, August 16, 2010

Hello everyone,

Im Kolben Preble and this is my first year with team CLIF BAR. Im super stocked to be on such an awesome team, that stands for a noble cause. Ill be racing the Portland Cross Crusade series and some national events around the country. Im sixteen years old and going into my second year in the 17-18 category. Cyclocross is my all time favorite discipline of cycling, but i also participate in road and mountain. This year in my "off season" i decided to tackle the road monster. I had done a few RR before but was still a cat five. I struggled early in the year but then improved and was able to make it to a cat three. The part i had the hardest time with was figuring out what i was supposed to do. In cross you have a clear goal: go as hard as you can for an hour. pretty strait forward right. Well in road it took me awhile to figure all of the tactics and decisions you must make in a race. In the end it has paid off because it helped to get something i lacked for cross. Straight up power. As the year progressed i began to move more towards Cross country racing. Then on to short track. Both of these im very familiar with. I like to use cross country to brush up my technical skills before moving to short track to work on some good old anaerobic fitness. Any way thats a little bit about me and what i do.

Catch you later!

Team Clif Bar Gearing up for 2010

Everything is falling to place for another successful season with the Clif Bar Development Cyclo Cross Team. We have added some great knew sponsors and are excited to be taking on more races and more environmental advocacy. Look for an official Team announcement soon.

Hope to see you out there
Mitch Hoke

TEAM CLIF BAR is working to fight climate change