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December 19, 2007 — The world’s best cyclists will once again take center stage in the Vail Valley Aug. 22-24, following a 20-year hiatus, as the Vail Valley Foundation brings the inaugural Colorado Stage International Cycle Classic to the streets of Vail and Beaver Creek.
The field, comprised of top Pro Tour teams, National teams and Pro Continental and Continental teams, will compete in a trio of races during the weekend, including a road race, a stage race and a time trail. The Colorado Stage will also feature a citizen’s ride and major cycling expo as part of the overall festivities.
“Having the ability to bring an international road cycling event back to the valley is a tremendously exiting proposition for the Vail Valley Foundation,” Foundation president Ceil Folz said. “This valley has such an incredible legacy from the Coors Classic days, and we truly believe that Colorado is ready for an event of this nature. Couple that with what we have achieved through mountain biking and it’s easy to understand the excitement and anticipation that exists for the Colorado Stage.”
The opening day’s 130-mile road race will begin in Breckenridge, finishing in the heart of Beaver Creek Village. Day two will feature the circuit race, with between 7-10 8.5 mile loops in and around Vail Village, while the final day’s competition will hearken back to the days of the Coors Classic with the traditional time trial course from Vail Village to the East Vail cul-de-sac.
A 10-year stop on the Coors Classic circuit, Vail played host to annual criterium and time trial competitions. The Vail Valley Foundation brought international mountain bike competition to the valley in 1992 with the UCI World Cup Finals, launching an eight-year affiliation with the sport, highlighted by the 1994 and 2001 World Mountain Bike Championships.
Many of the great names in road racing have competed on the streets of Vail, courtesy of the Coors Classic, including five-time Tour de France winner Bernard Hinault, three-time Tour champion Greg Lemond, Giro d’Italia winner Andy Hampsten and Olympic bronze medalist Davis Phinney. Hampsten still holds the Vail time trial record of 26:33.43, set during the 1987 Coors Classic.
The Colorado Stage International Cycle Classic is a project of the Vail Valley Foundation. For additional information, contact (970) 949-1999 or visit www.vvf.org.
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