Clear the roads: Here comes the Colorado River Ride |

Clear the roads: Here comes the Colorado River Ride

Ian Cropp
RR New Jersey BH 7-20

BEAVER CREEK – Forget about Sunday’s finish of the Tour de France – there’s a bigger, and longer race in Colorado. The Vail Daily Colorado-Eagle River Ride, formerly known as the Tour de Roundabouts, covers 100 miles and may have close to 1,000 riders participating.While riders may not make their way down the Champs-Elysees to the cheers of thousands of Parisians, they will have just as nice a view, and get the same treatment pro riders receive. “We believe it’s one of the most beautiful rides you can do,” said Arn Menconi, executive director of the Snowboard Outreach Society. “It’s a very doable ride. We have perfected the aid stations and we’ll have mechanics on the course. We wanted to make it safe ride, so we’ve worked with the police.”And the riders will be supplied with plenty of fuel on what could be dubbed the Tour de Food.

“We have turned it into a movable feast,” Menconi said. “There’s a pancake breakfast to put weight on, fresh pizzas and ice cream in Dotsero. We will be up at the Beaver Creek Chophouse afterwards.”For those not wanting to ride 100 miles, there’s still a way to join the Century Cub with a 100-kilometer ride. There is also a 50-mile ride option.Menconi said the multiple distances allow for a wider array of riders.”The average age of riders is 48. We have families riding with their teenage kids,” Menconi said. “We had a 20-percent increase in the number of women (registered).”The ride takes cyclists west from Beaver Creek Resort Elk Lot along U.S. Highway 6 through Edwards to Wolcott, then north on Colorado Highway 131 to Colorado River Road continuing to Dotsero at the confluence of the Colorado and Eagle Rivers. Riders then will head east on 6 and follow the Eagle River back to the finish at Beaver Creek Resort East Day Lot. The 100K ride follows the same route, finishing in Dotsero with shuttles busing riders back to Beaver Creek. There is also another option for the 100K ride that allows riders to return to the finish.

Catch him if you canMike Kloser, former World Mountain Biking champion and adventure racing champion, will be the ambassador for the ride.”The thing about Mike is he stops and eats more than everyone else,” Menconi said. “That’s his way of allowing everyone to catch up to him. You’ll lose (Kloser) on (River Road) and if you’re lucky, you’ll pick him up in Dotsero because he loves his ice cream bars.”Late registration for the race ends today and is $95. Day of race registration is $115. Riders can pick up registration packets Saturday at Pedal Power from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Proceeds from the ride go toward Snowboard Outreach Society, a nonprofit organization that helps young people at risk.For more information, go to Writer Ian Cropp can be reached at 748-2935 or, Colorado

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