Host club ECV has a strong cross tradition influenced by Stu Thorne who had been racing cross in the 80′s with the likes of Paul Curley, Adam Myerson and Tom Stevens. ECV cross practice sessions have going on annually since about 1996. After tossing around the idea of a cross race at Stage Fort Park for about two years, ECV got the City of Gloucester’s blessing and decided to hold the race in early October. While New England was known as a hotbed of American cross, attendence at races peaked sharply in October. With the exceptions of classic races such as Palmer, UMASS and Putney, November and December saw a sharp decrease in riders. With the city prefering an October race and ECV hoping for good spectator turnout, we set up for an early October race.
On 16 October 1999, the first edition of the Gloucester ECV Cyclocross Race was held on a bright, warm day with blustery winds. Two hundred and twenty-two racers competed with local favorite Tim Johnson taking the elite men’s race over second place Tobias Nestle of Germany. Jen Dial won the women’s event.