The USA Pro Challenge is rapidly becoming the crown jewel of American cycling; Colorado welcomes the tour August 18 through the 24th. Voted one of the top five races in the world and broadcast in over 175 countries, this year the 2014 USA Pro Challenge Tour will display all of Colorado’s beauty throughout the course’s seven stages while simultaneously showcasing top cyclists form across the globe.
The host cities are lined up for the tour; with overwhelming input from fans and fanatics over the past year, the USA Pro Challenge will have a new route and every stage of the tour will display the best scenery that our state has to offer.
Stage 1: Monday August 18th
Aspen & Snowmass Village
Maximum Elevation Gain: 2,546 m
The beginning of the race promises to be spectacular. Stage 1 begins in Aspen and continues to the Snowmass Village Circuit. This stage may be a short distance at 65 miles but it consists of three laps at 22 miles each, and two very aggressive and steep climbs with little recovery descent.
Stage 2: Tuesday August 19th
Aspen to Mt. Crested Butte
Maximum Elevation Gain: 3,040 m
The cyclists will tackle the long climb over Kebler Pass heading into a technical descent to Crested Butte. Stage two has its tricks; the road between Carbondale and Gunnison changes rapidly from pavement to dirt.
Stage 3: Wednesday August 20th
Gunnison to Monarch Mountain
Maximum Elevation Gain: 3,452 m
Stage 3 has the best finish by far. The cyclists will finish this stage climbing to the mountaintop of Monarch Mountain Ski Area at 10,800 ft.
Stage 4: Thursday August 21st
Colorado Springs Circuit
Maximum Elevation Gain: 2,000 m
Colorado Springs kicks off their stage with a starting line in front of the iconic Broadmoor Hotel. The cyclists travel through the magnificent Garden of the Gods and along the southern Front Range, weaving through Colorado’s legendary Red Rocks.
Stage 5: Friday August 22nd
Woodland Park to Breckenridge
Maximum Elevation Gain: 3,500 m
As the USA Pro Challenge heads back up to the hills, the start is in Woodland Park: a new addition to the host city list. In Stage 5 the tour reaches the highest point in the race, summiting Hoosier Pass, followed by a fast fall into Breckenridge.
Stage 6: Saturday August 23rd
Vail Individual Time Trial
Maximum Elevation Gain: 2,930 m
The gentle grade to this stage of the course allows for hairline differences in the time trails, which will be sure to offer exciting finishes for all spectators.
Stage 7: Sunday, August 24th
Boulder to Denver
Maximum Elevation Gain: 2,280 m
The final stage of the USA Pro Challenge hosts the largest number of viewers, and even though this stage is the same as previous years, the views are just as breathtaking. Competitors will be crossing the finish line in the heart of downtown after a quick lap through Denver’s City Park.
The event gives everyone a chance to see World Class cycling in person. The USA Pro Challenge pushes their competitors to climb to the highest point reached in any professional cycling race and we get to call this crazy course our home. This event is electric, drawing in over 1 million fans, and you should not miss you chance to witness it.