Volunteer USPro Weekend and Get Close to the Action

Greenville, SC will be the place to be this Memorial Day Weekend as the GHS USA Cycling Professional Championships roll into the city for the 6th consecutive year!  One of the best ways for you to get up close to the action is to become one of the many volunteers it takes to host a successful event.  You don’t have to be a cyclist to help out, and there are a wide variety of jobs available to choose from.  Volunteers are needed to help with media, parking, course marshaling, and hospitality!  Please volunteer today and help us make this the best event we’ve ever hosted.

Sat., May 28, volunteers are needed from 8AM until about 1PM.
Mon., May 30, volunteers are needed from 10AM until about 4PM.

If you can help, please contact Kimberly Morgan, the Volunteer Director at usprovolunteer@medalistsports.com or visit the official website: www.usacyclingchampionships.com

Stars & Stripes Challenge pb Amgen May 29th

If you’re looking for an awesome cycling event for the entire family, you will want to make your way to Greenville, SC for Memorial Day Weekend.  In between the USA Cycling Professional Time Trial Championships on May 28 and the Road Race Championships on May 30 is the Stars & Stripes Challenge presented by Amgen.

 

 

The Stars & Stripes Challenge pb Amgen is a fundraising ride on May 29, 2011 to help in the fight against cancer. It was started locally in Greenville and has since grown to one of the most successful events on the cycling calendar.  This year, we’re expecting thousands of cyclists to participate and ride on some of the same roads frequented by George Hincapie and many other top level professional cyclists.  Start/Finish will be at Gateway Park in Travelers Rest, SC located right along the Swamp Rabbit Trail that connects downtown Greenville with northern Greenville County.  This is the ideal location to launch some of the most beautiful rides in Upstate South Carolina.

 

 

The event was originally started by the Palmetto Peloton Project, a passionate group of cyclists in Greenville that understand that everyone’s lives are being touched by cancer in some way.  They wanted to create non-profit events that raise money for our local community and make real impacts in the fight against the disease.  Funds raised by the Stars & Stripes Challenge benefit cancer research, outreach and advocacy right here in Greenville and across the nation.  To date, the P3 organization has raised more than $1 million for the selected beneficiaries!  That’s real impact indeed.

 

Raise $500 for the cause to get one of these beautiful Hincapie jerseys.

 

 

Join us for the fun Memorial Day Weekend and bring the whole family.  There are rides and events available for all ability levels.  Let’s help the P3 reach their fundraising goals at this year’s event.  But, let’s also celebrate cycling and ride some of the most scenic roads in the US.  Did I also mention the world-class bicycle racing you can witness when you’re not pedaling?  See you in Greenville May 28-30, 2011.

 

Routes have been announced if you want to check them out before you get here:

10 Mile Route - 11.3 miles, 843 ft of climbing

25-30 Mile Route - 28 miles, 2158 ft of climbing

Metric Route - 64.2 miles, 4379 ft of climbing

Century Route - 106.6 miles, 7524 ft of climbing

 

 

George Hincapie Video

George Hincapie is the newest brand ambassador for Road ID. You’ve probably seen George riding this year in his Wrist ID Elite.  Versus did a Road ID Athlete Profile during the coverage of Paris Roubaix.  Check it out in case you missed it:

Road ID is also a sponsor of the Hincapie Development Team and we’re glad to have them on board with our program.  They have provided all of our athletes with ID’s to help keep them safer out on the road.  Many of us love the comfort and style of the new Wrist ID Elite, but there are some that still choose the original Wrist ID Sport with a Velcro closure.  If you haven’t seen all the great products these guys make, visit their website.  Thanks to them for their awesome support of our Hincapie Development Team Program.


What Jersey Hangs on Your Wall

The bike industry is a fairly small industry.  I am constantly amazed at the number of people I run into at bicycle business and events around the country that I have met or ridden with at one time or another.  It’s not uncommon to talk to a rider at a dealer in CA that has climbed to the top of Caesar’s Head in SC, or talk to a customer service rep in Chicago that has watched George win a stage of the Tour of CA.  Our industry is like a family with relatives living in different states.  You don’t always know the other person, but you always have some cycling in common. Hincapie Sales Manager, Lynn Joslin experienced this on a recent visit to Competitive Cyclist in Arkansas.

Competitive Cyclists' Wade Wolfenbarger took the 2010 Six Gap KOM Jersey in the 34 & under category.

While getting the tour of the facility with Hincapie Sales Rep, Robert Snedden she noticed a very familiar jersey handing on the wall.  She is well acquainted with the GA 6 Gap event jerseys and this one was a rather rare 6 Gap KOM jersey from 2010.  The 6 Gap Century is one of the most challenging rides in the southeast, regularly attracts over 3000 riders to the 100 mile event.  Turns out, Wade Wolfenbarger won the 6 Gap KOM competition at the challenging GA century ride last year and was proudly displaying his prize for all his colleagues to see.  (No, he wasn’t actually wearing it at his desk, but I am sure that it is an effective reminder to his coworkers of his climbing prowess.)  We make all the jerseys for the 6 Gap events, and it was a real treat for Lynn to see one so far west.  That’s just proof of the attraction that 11,200 feet of climbing in 100 miles can have on our cycling brethren.

If you’re a climbing fan, or just looking for a first-class century ride to challenge you and your friends, check out the 6 Gap Century. There is a shorter 3 Gap Fifty if you want to finish up earlier to take Wade’s picture at the finish line.  If you do the ride, make sure you get the event jersey to commemorate your accomplishment. You might even want to hang it on your wall.

Getting in the Spirit for Paris Roubaix

We had a great time on our Paris Roubaix celebration ride today. We promised cobblestones and we delivered!  Thanks to the dedicated fans that came out to join us.

We planned a route that featured 2 Pave sections (ok, we’re calling both of them Pave, but one was more like gravel).  We headed north from the Hincapie HQ on the Swamp Rabbit Trail to Pave section #1.  This is the short gravel section of the trail after Roe Ford Rd. that we normally curse, but today it was more reasonable.  You could tell that some of the group had been reading rider diaries from the race, because the pace immediately quickened over the rocks.  Just like in France, right!

We started from a gravel parking lot behind Hincapie HQ to get in the spirit quickly.

From there we headed back towards downtown over the base of Paris Mountain where (just by chance) we found Pave section #2, an unexpected Pave section very close to George’s house.  In the spirit of the weekend, the DOT had ground up the asphalt to prepare for a repaving.  At this point, as a rumbled over the rough surface, I couldn’t help but wonder how close this was to the actual torture they will face during the race.  I settled on “not even close” as I rode one-handed trying to shoot some video of the experience.

 

After the construction zone we headed back down North Main, retracing part of the USPro RR course. We were headed to Pave section #3, the only authentic “cobblestone” section in downtown Greenville. This would culminate our celebration and get all of us charged up for the weekend’s race.  Or it would at least give us a truer understanding of what George and the BMC boys will go through on Sunday.

We found our Roubaix replica cobbles behind the Upcountry History Museum.

Before you tell me that there are other cobblestone sections in Greenville, please realize that we aren’t talking about smooth brickwork with little tiny gaps between bricks. We’re not talking about the smooth, decorative pavers scattered around downtown. If you can roll your baby stroller across it without waking up junior, it’s not a true section of Pave.  We rolled up to the stones in front of the Upcountry History Museum thinking we would finally experience a little bit of Paris Roubaix.  What an experience it was?!?!  Those guys are crazy. One well traveled cyclist was with us and who had actually ridden through the Arenberg Forest on his bike.  He confirmed that the Pave section we finished on was indeed close to what they ride in the actual race.  Big difference is…we rode about 100 meters…and they will ride over 50 kilometers of that stuff on Sunday!  It was humbling to realize what they actually go through.  Good luck to George and the BMC boys this weekend.  Everyone that finishes that race deserves a trophy.

Those are some nasty rocks!

We didn't have any major mishaps, but we did break a shifter cable on our Pave.
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