Following his a third straight single-speed cyclocross world championship win, Giant Factory Off-Road Team rider Adam Craig returned to geared cyclocross competition aboard his TCX Advanced Pro at the UCI-ranked Cyclocross Los Angeles event in Southern California last month. There Craig pulled off back-to-back podium finishes against some of North America’s top ’cross racers. Impressive results considering Craig primary focus this year was the Enduro World Series.
Craig is the first to admit that enduro training isn’t ideal prep for cyclocross, but the Oregon resident is well skilled at using his top-tier bike-handling skills and savvy race tactics to stay iin podium contention.
“I really have had to race smart, using my advantages in the turns to stick with groups until the bitter end, when one hard effort will make the difference,” Craig explains.
Watch Craig explain the finer details of his Giant TCX Advanced Pro cyclocross race bike.
The ability to do what many other can’t has made Craig a fan favorite, but he insists there’s more to his bike-handling antics than entertainment value. “Folks are excited to see silly tricks, but it’s optimizing the nuances of a cyclocross course that really gets me fired up,” he says. “The clock doesn’t lie, so I try to make fun choices that still consider the racing environment.”
Being a mountain biker at heart, Craig appreciates the technologies that are leaking over into the ’cross realm. “Being able to precisely steer your bike and smoothly modulate the brakes to find grip is what allows those nuanced fundamentals of riding to shine through on the ‘cross course,” he says of riding a bike spec’d with disc brakes and a 15mm thru-axle.
Craig and the rest of the Giant Factory Off-Road Team are also racing on SRAM’s Force CX1 cyclocross-specific drivetrain, which utilizes many technologies developed initially for SRAM’s mountain bike drivetrains. “The main difference with the CX1 drivetrain is that you don’t know it’s there,” he says. “The chain is completely stable and silent—it’s like riding a singlespeed with gears.”
Here’s full spec on Craig’s TCX Advanced Pro:
- Model: TCX Advanced Pro, size M/L
- Frame: Advanced-grade composite
- Fork: Advanced-grade composite, OverDrive 2 steerer, 15mm thru-axle
- Handlebar: Zipp Service Course SL-70, 44cm width, short and shallow drop
- Handlebar Tape: Zipp Service Course Cyclocross
- Stem: Giant Contact, OverDrive 2, 100mm
- Seatpost: Giant D-Fuse composite
- Saddle: Fi;zi:k Tundra
- Pedals: Crankbrothers Candy 11
- Shift Levers: SRAM Force CX1 Hydraulic
- Front Derailleur: N/A
- Rear Derailleur: SRAM Force CX1
- Brakes: SRAM Force CX1 Hydraulic Disc, 140mm SRAM Centerline rotors
- Cassette: SRAM PG 1170, 11-32t
- Chain: SRAM Red 22
- Crankset: SRAM Force CX1, 44t chainring
- Wheels: Zipp 303 Firecrest Tubular Disc-brake
- Front Tire: Schwalbe Racing Ralph Tubular
- Rear Tire: Schwalbe Racing Ralph Tubular
- Total bike weight: 16.4 lbs
For more information on the TCX Advanced Pro, visit www.giant-bicycles.com