Grass track racing is an almost forgotten aspect of our sport. Along with bicycle speedway, it is eclipsed by the now very fashionable velodrome version, and even by bicycle polo. Nevertheless, the history and culture is an extended one, and provides us with a rich style. This bike by Townsend Cycles combines the age-old tradition of path racing with the classic ethos of velodrome racing.
Gregory Townsend is an ex-pat Briton who now resides in Monrovia, California. A 30-year experience with track, cyclocross, mountain bike and road racing is evident in his builds, as is his English heritage: old-world touches reminiscent of Hetchins can be seen (especially on his ‘Burgundy Road’ frame).
The Grass Track Racer is dressed nicely in Campagnolo Chorus Pista components and drivetrain, with some beautiful laminated beech rims made by Ghisallo in Italy (which can be procured in the US through Ric Hjertberg’s Wheel Fanatyk blog). Greg likes to incorporate the bar and stem combination into the overall theme of the bike, and it works well. That leather bar wrap reminds me of the suede elbow patches on a tweed shooting jacket.
The legendary Joe Bell performed the finishing. The paint is the final touch on what is a perfect blend of past and present, town and country. Have a look through the Townsend gallery on the website and flickr for more.