Race for the Orange Jersey Begins March 10th with Delray Beach Twilight
Athens, GA - Top shelf American criterium racing kicks off for the sixth year in March 2012 with the return of the USA CRITS Championship Series. Encompassing 11 high-speed cycling events in some of the country’s most dynamic communities, the USA CRITS Series features four new events and $50,000 in overall prize money.
This year the series welcomes four new events to its race lineup including the 2012 kickoff – the inaugural Delray Beach Twilight Festival.
“We’re beyond excited!” says race director Chelsea Midlarsky. “Since we’re a first year event, it’s an honor to kick off the series. We have a great 1-kilometer course that will go through our prime shopping and restaurant district during our high tourist season. It’s going to be a great way to introduce cycling to a lot of people who don’t know the sport.”
From Delray the series continues with another new event – the Athlete Octane Old Pueblo Grand Prix in Tucson, Arizona. The Presbyterian Invitational Criterium in Charlotte, North Carolina is the third stop on the USA CRITS schedule, taking place this year in April instead of July. America’s most beloved criterium follows Charlotte, when professional cycling returns to downtown Athens, Georgia for the 33rd Terrapin Twilight Criterium. The series then heads north to St. Louis for the return of the Tour de Grove, to be followed by another brand new USA CRITS event – The Lake Bluff Twilight Criterium just outside of Chicago. Also returning to the USA CRITS fold this year is the Rockstar Games Harlem Skyscraper Cycling Classic in New York City. Cincinnati, Ohio’s Hyde Park Blast is stop number eight followed a week later by the Iron Hill Twilight Criterium in West Chester, Pennsylvania. The racing then shifts to the western part of the country with the return of the Exergy Twilight Criterium in Boise, Idaho, before wrapping up with the USA CRITS Finals held in glorious Vail, Colorado.
“We’re excited to be a part of the USA CRITS Series this year.” said Race Director Dieter Drake, also organizes the popular Tour of the Battenkill. “We’ve been working for over a year to bring back the magic of the old Coors Classic to Vail. It’s an excellent venue for such a prestigious series final and we hope our weekend-long professional and amateur event will be an attractive destination for racers and spectators.”
While four of this year’s events are also part of USA Cycling’s 2012 National Criterium Calendar, USA CRITS series founder Gene Dixon points out why the USA CRITS Championship Series stands out among other cycling events in the nation:
“Encompassing quality events from the NCC, the USA CRITS Series is focused on city-centered, high-energy bike racing with tremendous spectator appeal with added team and event marketing benefits .”
In addition to separate cash awarded at each event, men and women riders in the USA CRITS Series accrue points towards individual and team classifications. The series’ points leaders will don the Orange Jersey of the overall leader following each event, with the final winners crowned in Vail taking home the overall purse.
And while the USA CRITS Series traverses the nation, cycling fans the world over will be able to enjoy all of the action from stop to stop with live streaming coverage provided by Inside Cycling TV.
“Mere words couldn't come close to describing the elation that all of us at ICTV are feeling.” said Kevin Smith, ICTV’s Executive Producer. “Our exuberance is matched only by our manic forward thinking.”
Stay tuned to USACRITS.com for all the latest information regarding the 2012 series throughout the season.
2012 USA CRITS Championship Series
Mar 10: Delray Beach Twilight, Delray Beach, FL
Mar 17: Athlete Octane Old Pueblo Grand Prix, Tucson, AZ
Apr 14: Presbyterian Invitational Criterium in Charlotte, NC
Apr 28: Terrapin Twilight Criterium, Athens, GA
May 12: Tour de Grove, St. Louis, MO
Jun 1: Lake Bluff Twilight Criterium, Lake Bluff, IL
Jun 19: Harlem Skyscraper Cycling Classic, New York, NY
Jun 30: Hyde Park Blast, Cincinnati, OH
Jul 7: Iron Hill Twilight Criterium. West Chester, PA
Jul 14: Exergy Twilight Criterium, Boise, ID
Sep 30: Tour of Vail, Vail, CO
For more information about the USA CRITS Championship Series, please visit http://usacrits.com or send an email to email@example.com
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