Vail offers tips for watching bike race
VAIL — The return of the USA Pro Challenge Time Trial in Vail on Aug. 23 promises to offer a thrilling day of racing as Vail welcomes thousands of cycling fans for Stage 6 of the week-long race throughout Colorado. Vail hosted the time trial during the event’s inaugural race in 2011 and again in 2013, with the results proving to be pivotal in determining the overall race winner. This year’s USA Pro Challenge covers seven stages, Monday through Aug. 24, with the start in Aspen and the finish in Denver.
The town of Vail, in partnership with the Vail Valley Foundation, has been working to coordinate logistics for the Vail Time Trial, which includes temporary road closures, re-routing of buses, overflow parking, free bike storage, activities and spectator zones. Neighborhoods in East Vail and businesses in Vail Village are being alerted of the race-day impacts, which will occur mostly from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. that day. The impacts are also described on the town’s website at vailgov.com/ProChallenge.
Prior to race day, several event-related activities will be staged at Mountain Plaza in Vail Village, beginning at 6 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 22, including kids activities, ice cream apres and a chromoly bike building challenge. This Stage 6 preview will be highlighted by the showing of a free outdoor movie taking place at 7:30 p.m. on the lawn.
The time trial race on Aug. 23 will take place from 1:05 to 4:15 p.m. with as many as 128 riders taking to the start line. Prior to the start of the race, which will be located at Solaris Plaza, forerunners will be riding the 10-mile course from noon to 1 p.m. Spectators will also enjoy a Bike Expo in Vail Village from noon to 6 p.m. Winning riders will be recognized at an award ceremony beginning at 4:15 p.m. at Solaris Plaza.
Among the day’s impacts will be temporary road closures between 11:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. as follows:
• All of South and North frontage roads will be closed from Vail Valley Drive (golf course bridge) east to East Vail.
• All of Bighorn Road in East Vail will be closed. Use Columbine Drive for emergency-only access crossing.
• Interstate 70 East Vail exit 180 off-ramps will be closed.
• In Vail Village: Willow Bridge Road, Gore Creek Drive, Bridge Street, Hanson Ranch Road and East Meadow Drive will be closed all day to vehicles from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m.
See vailgov.com/ProChallenge for a full list of neighborhood road restrictions.
Parking restrictions, Bus Schedules
Public parking restrictions will include the following:
• The top deck of the Vail Village parking structure will be closed from 6 a.m. Aug. 22 to 7 p.m. Aug. 23.
• The Ford Park upper parking lot will be closed all day Aug. 22 to 8 a.m. Aug. 24.
• The Vail Municipal building parking lot will be closed from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Aug. 23 while it is used for emergency parking.
Town of Vail transit service will be modified from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Aug. 23 as follows:
There will be no service on the golf course route.
For the East Vail route, buses will leave the Vail Village Transportation Center from the top deck on a regular basis and express on eastbound I-70 to the East Vail exit 180. The route continues on Bighorn Road to the intersection of Bridge Road. From there, buses travel onto Bridge Road, then Lupine Drive and Columbine Drive until intersecting with the race course along Bighorn Road. From there, buses will use Streamside Circle West to Streamside Circle East where they will follow the regular East Vail bus route.
The following East Vail bus stops will be serviced with 20-minute minimum frequency:
• Bridge Road near Gore Creek (temporary)
• Intersection of Lupine Drive and Columbine Drive (temporary)
• South of the intersection of Columbine Drive and Bighorn Road (temporary)
• Streamside Circle
• Timber Falls
• Vail Racquet Club
• Bighorn Park
• Meadow Lane East
• Meadow Drive
• Juniper Lane
• Near the intersection of Main Gore Drive and Gore Circle (temporary)
Also, the in-town bus route will use South Frontage Road in place of East Meadow Drive (farmers market route) with service to the Vail Transportation Center from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Aug. 23. Service to Vail Valley Drive and Golden Peak on the in-town route will be unavailable.
For a listing of events and activities related to the USA Pro Challenge, visit Pro Challenge.com. For traffic alerts, subscribe to ecalert.org.