The cyclo-cross tool box
A tool box is a MUST for any local CX racer. In fact, anyone riding cycling events needs a small tool box to sling in their garage or car boot. It saves time, effort and panic. No one wants extra hassle before starting a grudge match against the mud.
Firstly, find a small, compact tool box (roughly £5). Get one with compartments on the top for those little fiddly things. It stops them rattling around at the bottom of the box and from getting squished by everything else. A box with a removable top tray keeps items seperated too.
1. Embrocation. Warm those legs up. We got a little sample pot of Rapha Embrocation. That stuff is hot; you only need a little bit.
2. Electrical tape. Handlebar tape starts to unravel mid practise lap. Tape it back into place for the race. Electrical tape comes in handy for everything: rubbing cables, ripped things, loose stuff.
3. Zip ties. Get a variety of sizes. They will always come in handy.
4. Multi-tool. This multi-tool has tyre levers attached too in case of a puncture.
5. Cable cutters. Cut stuff, trim things. There are too many uses to list out.
6. Spare cleats. You could also throw in a few extra safety pins and cable ends into those little compartments.
7. Muc-Off wipes. A quick way to clear the mud splats from the practice lap. When you line up on the grid your bike will be enviously gleaming.
8. Brush kit. Get a couple of brushes in a variety of sizes. Clear off dried mud or clogged up grass so it doesn't end up all over your car. You could remove the items in the tool box and fill with water. Splash it on the frame and clean off the worst of the mud.
9. Chain oil/lube. Sometimes we pull our CX bike out ready to race and realise it needs a bit of emergency TLC. Squeaky chains are very annoying.
10. Inner tube. You just never know if a puncture is around the corner.