How to be Prepared in the Pit

At the Cycle-Smart International, I was able to take a peek at the pit kit of one Christopher Zigmont. Chris is currently the CEO and of Pedro's, manufacturer of environmental friendly bicycle care products and tools. He also previously served as the director of sales at marketing at Mavic.

Chris knows a thing or two about 'cross. You can find him on the microphone at the key New England Verge series races, and he even takes a break to strap on his cycling shoes and hop in the master's race. Chris taught me two important lesson before I started racing cross. One, having new and clean cables is the easiest way to keep your bike functioning. Two, always be prepared for whatever a cross race can throw at you.

At the CSI, Chris was pitting for Mitchell Hoke of the Clif Bar Cyclocross team. Save for a crash at the start on both days of the men's elite race, Mitchell avoided major mishap and pulled off an impressive 17th and 23rd place over the weekend of racing.

Let's take a look at Chris' tools.

Upon first glance, you'll find the standards tools found in everybody's tool box. Looking at the center of the kit, you can see a set of metric allen keys, screwdrivers and a spanner wrench. But also in this kit are tools that I would never have even thought of bringing to a pit. Let's tackle this by drivetrain components:
- Tire Levers
- Front Skewer
- Rear Skewer

- Screwdrivers
- Various Pliers (likely a needle nose and Breaker-grozier)
- Pedro's Vise Whip
- Cable Cutters
- Scissors
- An extra set of allen keys

Other Nice Touches:
- Zip ties
- Permanent Marker
- Handy carrying case

I'm sure there are plenty of other tools hiding in all of the pockets of the bag, but this is just an idea of what to bring to be prepared. We all bring clothes to make sure we're comfortable for every 10 degree change in weather, and we bring tires to accommodate the unpredictable conditions of a parcours, so why not bring a set of tools to make sure you have every possible mechanical covered. After all, what's the point of driving over 200 miles for a weekend of racing if you break your bike riding a warm up lap.

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