For six weeks in a Boulder mall, cyclists have a haven to watch the Tour de France and the Olympics from a couch or a provided trainer, catch group rides and sit in on seminars from fit and nutrition experts.
The host committee for stage 6 of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge in Boulder, Colorado, secured a huge space in the 29th Street Mall, and has flung open the doors (and the wifi) of the Boulder Cycling Lounge for free to cyclists from the Tour de France through the Olympics.
The idea, organizers say, is to keep riders' enthusiasm up through until the start of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, which runs August 20-26, from Durango, Colorado to Denver.
“We felt like the enthusiasm in the cycling world will flow over into the community support for August 25 when Boulder will host what we think will be the most exciting and demanding stage of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge," said local organizing committee co-chair Barry Siff.
As the Tour de France aired Monday, the couches were filled like so many others around the world with rabid cycling fans, eyes glued to the screen. Only many of these fans also happened to be professional cyclists themselves, including Giro d’Italia stage winner and 2012 Olympian Taylor Phinney, veteran pro Tim Johnson, elite national champ Julian Kyer and other friends.
The second annual USA Pro Cycling Challenge will visit Boulder for the first time this year, with the stage 6 finish on Saturday, August 25 set on the Flagstaff mountain.
The race this year will tackle three mountain passes over 12,000 feet as racers climb more than 42,000 feet over the course of the 683-mile route.