High Point Hosting USA Cycling Professional Criterium National Championships: Set for July 25-28, 2013

Four-day High Point Cycling Classic includes food, music, kids zone and art

HIGH POINT, N.C., June 11, 2013 — Downtown High Point will be filled with a blur of fast-moving bicycles on July 27 as elite men and women riders from across the nation compete in the 2013 USA Cycling Professional Criterium National Championships.

The races are the U.S. biking world’s equivalent of the NCAA Tournament, the Super Bowl and the Daytona 500.

The four-day 2013 High Point Cycling Classic being held July 25 to 28 will feature a variety of fun activities for people of all ages, including outdoor concerts, exhibitions by custom bicycle makers, bicycle movies, an art show and a gallery of collectible vintage racing bicycles. Admission is free for all the events.

“We’re working to make this the best Professional Criterium National Championships ever,” says Chip Duckett, the High Point physician and cycling enthusiast who has been the driving force responsible for bringing the event to the Triad this year and in 2014. “Downtown High Point will be filled with thousands of fans, food and music throughout the weekend, with a special highlight for kids at the block-wide Kids Zone.”

A Criterium, or “crit” to biking insiders, is a high-speed, action-packed bike race in which individuals and teams speed around a short course of closed downtown streets. In High Point, the races will start and finish at the Mendenhall Transportation Terminal across from the Showplace furniture showroom building. High Point’s 1.3-mile crit course features a combination of high-speed turns and smooth road surfaces that creates excitement for racers and spectators alike. The pack of racers returns to the starting point every two to three minutes, continually jockeying for position until a final sprint to the finish.

“It’s exhilarating to watch because the fans are so close to the action,” says Duckett. He adds that spectators also will be able to monitor other points on the course via a live broadcast on nearby viewing screens.

High Point competed with more than 30 cities across the United States for the rights to host the Professional Criterium National Championships in 2013-2014. Dozens of professional cyclists from around the country are expected to participate in this year’s event, including defending U.S. Champion Ken Hanson.

To win, riders rely on a mixture of bike-handling skills, experience and talent. As in NASCAR, teammates can help each other: Riders draft in packs because a rider tucked into the slipstream of another uses nearly 30 percent less energy than those riding alone or ahead of the pack.

Racers compete on teams, although only the top racer is awarded the coveted Stars and Stripes jersey and crowned National Champion for a year.

“The right to compete in this race in High Point is reserved for the very best,” says Duckett. “There is no higher competition in the U.S. in closed circuit racing.”

This marks the fourth year for the High Point Cycling Classic. Organized and managed by Piedmont Charity Sports Promotions, a local nonprofit, the event has generated more than $100,000 in funding for select area charities and agencies since its start.

For more details, visit www.hpcyclingclassic.com.

About USA Cycling:
Recognized by the United States Olympic Committee and the Union Cycliste Internationale, USA Cycling is the official governing body for all disciplines of competitive cycling in the United States, including road, track, mountain bike, BMX and cyclo-cross. As a membership-based organization, USA Cycling comprises 66,500+ licensees; 2,200 clubs and teams; and 34 local associations. The national governing body sanctions 2,650 competitive and non-competitive events throughout the U.S. each year and is responsible for the identification, development, and support of American cyclists. To learn more about USA Cycling, visit www.usacycling.org.

About the High Point Cycling Classic:
The annual High Point Cycling Classic, launched in 2010, is a community event of music, food and other fun activities. In 2013 and 2014, the High Point Cycling Classic includes the USA Cycling Professional Criterium National Championships, a prestigious annual bike race held on a course of city streets. A free event, the High Point Cycling Classic is directed by Piedmont Charity Sports Promotions, a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit made up of local volunteers.