• 303Radio: Haute Route Rockies

    This series of European-style stage races is coming to the U.S., and the Colorado Rockies will host the first event in 2017.

    This past week a select group of a dozen pre-rode the stages to work out logistics like feed zones, traffic, and the best "breath-taking" routes.

    Featured here on 303Radio, Road Bike Action Magazine Editor Neil Shirley checks in after day 3 of the Rocky Mountain Haute Route test ride. The first stage is in Boulder, and the entire route will be announced next month.

    This sounds like an amazing event so be sure to check this out! The ride will be capped at around 500 - Register HERE.

    Also, check out the FACEBOOK PAGE.

  • National bike world calls Boulder County home
    Image

    Seth Dykema works on a cycling component at the gluing station at Stages Cycling in Boulder. (Cliff Grassmick)

    From Times-Call

    Boulder's long and storied history as a hub of cycling activity is entering a new chapter, as a center for industry advocacy.

    The recent hiring of Lafayette's Todd Grant as executive director of the National Bicycle Dealers Association (NBDA) means that all five of the top industry organizations — NBDA, People for Bikes, International Mountain Bike Association, Outdoor Industries Women's Coalition and Bicycle Product Suppliers Association — have a leadership presence in Boulder County.

    "More than ever, today Boulder is widely viewed as the hub" of cycling, said Tim Blumenthal, president of People For Bikes, the world's largest bicycling nonprofit.

    Blumenthal moved People for Bikes, then called Bikes Belong, from Boston to Boulder in 2004. It was a repeat performance: He also moved the IMBA to Boulder in 1993 when he took over leadership.

    The OIWC and BPSA are also here. The NBDA's president and offices are still in California for the time being, though the current lease is up in 2017. There are no formal plans to move the 70-year-old organization to Boulder County, but there's also no reason it couldn't happen.

    "An association that is national or international can very well be headquartered anywhere," said Fred Clements, NBDA's vice-president. "I think a lot of people have picked Boulder because it's beautiful, it's very bicycle friendly, it's near an airport. There's a number of private companies there."

    Another factor? It's just plain pleasant to ride a bike here, said Ray Keener, executive director of BPSA and president of the board of Community Cycles.

    "It's really the draw of the culture and how easy it is to have a bike-centered life," Keener said.

    Boulder was one of first places to be a good place to ride a bike in town, said Blumenthal, helped along by the free-wheeling college students and alternative-minded residents.

    By the mid-'90s, Boulder's reputation as bike central was firmly established by the Coors Classic bike race (originally the Red Zinger) and the hordes of pro cyclists who lived and trained here.

    Then, in 1993, industry followed. . .

    Read the full story HERE.

  • Haute Route Is Coming: A Preview Ride
    Image

    All photos: Courtesy of Mavic Haute Route Rockies

    By Scott Downes

    As the clock ticked past an hour straight of climbing above Boulder on Saturday morning, I chuckled about the fact that, in more than a decade of living and biking in Colorado, I had somehow never ridden the iconic climb I was suffering on now. Or the fast, flowing canyon descent that followed. Or the gravel rollers that came after that, dry and scorching in the midday sun.

    Shame on me.

    It was a small taste of what is to come over a seven-day test ride for the Mavic Haute Route Rockies.


    On Saturday, 303Cycling was invited to join a small contingent of other cycling media and some of the who’s who of Colorado cycling for Stage 1 of the preview ride, in preparation for the recently announced Haute Route Rockies that will come to Colorado in June 2017. And with it, our very own backyard will join the Alps, Pyrenees, and Dolomites in this prestigious series of some of the world’s greatest cycling routes.

    “This is as high as I’ve ever been on a bike,” said a woman from London, barely halfway up the first ascent. It would only get higher from there.

    Stage 1 of the test ride tallied some 7,000 feet of climbing. Sunday’s stage offered almost twice that. And there are five days left.

    The rest of the route, which organizers are keeping close to the vest until it’s finalized for 2017, will take the long, high roads further up and around the Rockies, ultimately finishing in Colorado Springs. Seven stages, 550 miles, and more than 50,000 feet of climbing.

    What is familiar terrain for local Colorado cyclists who tackle it on lunch rides and weekend outings will be a lung- and leg-busting experience for those new to these roads. And for locals, Haute Route Rockies will offer a unique way to experience some home turf, with pro-level support.

    Haute Route events are aimed at providing amateur cyclists with a high-end experience and a level of support to match, with iconic, challenging routes in the cyclosportive tradition.

    On Saturday, our contingent of a few dozen cyclists was backed by full mechanical support from Mavic, medical teams, and well-stocked aid stations. There were even rumored to be some magical, Nutella-based Skratch Labs cookies being handed out, though I never was able to track down the mystery musette bag with the remaining goodies.

    When Haute Route Rockies arrives in 2017, participants - limited to 600 riders - will enjoy this type of support and more, with timed sections of the course, race villages at each finish, daily massages, point-to-point luggage transfers, and film crews to document the adventure.

    On Saturday, the ride finished with some welcome shade in the park next to the Boulder Farmer’s Market, where burrito bowls and tacos and Thai iced tea welcomed riders in salt-stained kits. Smiles and stories of the day were shared amongst strangers and old friends alike, as thoughts turned to rest and recovery - an intimate preview for what’s to come this week, and more so for what’s to come next year.

  • Massive car vs. bike crash kills five in Michigan

    From VeloNews

    Five cyclists were killed and four more were injured after a group of riders was struck by a pickup truck in Michigan Tuesday evening.

    According to multiple reports, the cyclists were riding together near Kalamazoo, located in the southwestern part of Michigan, when a blue Chevrolet pickup collided with them shortly after 6:30 p.m. Five of the riders were pronounced dead at the scene. One of the injured victims is reportedly in critical condition.

    The driver, reports MLive.com, fled the scene but was caught a short time later. His truck was disabled as a result of the crash.

    None of the victims’ names have been released. The driver has only been identified as a 50-year-old man from West Michigan.

    The crash occurred near Markin Glen County Park, north of downtown Kalamazoo.

    According to the Detroit Free Press, police received several calls from citizens a half hour before the crash about a pickup truck driving erratically in the area. Kalamazoo County Prosecutor Jeff Getting said police were looking for the truck at the time of the crash, but there was not a pursuit ongoing.

    “There is very little I can or will tell you about how exactly this accident happened,” Getting said, reports the Free Press. “I can’t even begin to imagine what [the victims’ families are] going through.”

    A witness to the crash said the truck nearly hit him before it plowed into the group of riders traveling northbound on North Westnedge Avenue.

    “Someone, I don’t know who, told me watch out and I jumped back,” said Markus Eberhard, who was exiting a store at the time, according to the Free Press. “The truck went past my foot — almost hit my foot, and I looked, and before I could tell the bikers to move, it was too late. I already heard a bunch of bikes hit his front end.”

    The Kalamazoo Bicycle Club’s road safety director Paul Selden said he is aware of a group that rides on Tuesday nights.

    “What I have seen of these riders in the past and the way [they] organize the rides, they always were led in a safe manner,” Selden told MLive.

    “I think this is one of the worst, if not the worst, bicycling-motorist accidents in the county.”

    More from VeloNews

  • Beginners Guide to Bike Racing, Part III - for Parents of Juniors


    This is a 3-part series featuring Lance Panigutti of Without Limits Productions, Dana Willett of 303 Media, and Ainslie Maceachran of Gemini Coaching.

    Every spring and summer many of us have the same internal conversation with ourselves, “I’d love to get into bike racing, but I don’t know where to start.” You’re a casual bike rider, maybe did a few races in another part of the country and want to get back into the scene, or have been a mountain biker your whole life and want to try something new. So where do you start answering the list of potential questions in this mysterious racing world?

    Ainslie Maceachran: Advice for parents of juniors looking to start racing on the road

    - Keep it fun.
    Over the years I’ve seen lots of promising young talent come and go from the sport because their parents were a little TOO involved. Let your child dictate the level of involvement they’d like to have.

    - Participate in your local grass roots cycling.
    In Ft Collins, we have a local organization that puts on mid-week, fun, low key events where kids race for free. They range from a criterium to time trials to short track mtb racing. These are not only fun but they help your child to meet like minded peers. They also, quite often, help locate resources such as equipment, rides to events, coaching etc.

    - Don’t buy new.
    It IS nice to have the latest equipment but, because your child is growing rapidly and their interest could change, talk to your local bike shop about used equipment. Get them something that will do the job but you don’t have to take a 2nd mortgage on your house to afford. It should however be a quality piece of equipment. Avoid department store bikes at all turns.

    - Get involved.
    Try to volunteer where you can. Become a mentor or coach. Help organize events. Your interest in their sport will demonstrate to them that you support their efforts.

    Read more tips for Parents in The Junior Athlete Triangle, which features accomplished cyclist/coach Ann Trombley, then moves on to the athlete's mother (Marina Lepikhina), and ends with athlete Ksenia Lepikhina herself. This valuable article discusses finding a juniors-specific coach, your role as a parent, and goal-setting.

    [303 Cycling:] How do you manage the ever-present "coaching triangle" between Jr. racers, parents and yourself?
    Ann Trombley: I think it is very important to communicate with both the junior and their parents. I have open communication between parents and junior athletes through phone, email and in-person meetings. The first meeting is a good way to connect with parents and athletes. After the first meeting it really depends on the age and maturity of the athlete. I expect the athlete to be responsible for performing their scheduled rides and communicating with me. However, they are just kids! The parents need to be behind what the juniors are doing. Parents also have insights about nutrition, school and other issues the athlete may have that are important to their training and racing. Parents are a crucial part of the athletes development and I like to keep them in the loop as much as possible. For any athlete to do well it is important to have a good support system. For Juniors that is often parents and family.

    Also see:
    Beginner Bike Series Part I - Getting Started
    Beginner Bike Series Part II - For Women

  • 303Radio Launches with Feedback Sports, Jeff Nitta

    Feedback Sports Director of Sales & Marketing Jeff Nitta joins us for our inaugural 303Radio show, including discussion of how unique storage & trainer products are engineered & designed.

  • Georgia Gould - Post World Cup Race Recap from Germany

    Georgia Gould is happy with her fitness, but also feeling frustrated. Crashes and flat tires and time in tech zones - "not my best race, not my worst... you've got to be able to take something positive from every race"
    Hear the podcast with George Thomas here:

    Up next weekend: FRANCE! Stay tuned...