Thursday, July 24, 2008

A Granfondo in Pennsylvania!!

My friend Eddie alerted me to a granfondo-type of event that is scheduled in Pennsylvania on September 6, 2008 in Souderton, preceding the 11th annual Univest Grand Prix. The Univest Grand Prix is one of only thirteen Union Cyclist International (UCI)-ranked professional road cycling competitions for men in the United States. More than 150 professional riders from 20 countries will compete.

The organizers describe the event, called a cyclosportif by the French and a granfondo by the Italians, it like this:

"Cyclosportif" is a European term for recreational cyclists who enjoy the challenge of riding a professional level course. Popular Cyclosportif events include "L'Etape du Tour" (, an event where the "cyclos" ride a complete Tour de France stage. The 2008 Univest GP Cyclosportif participants will experience the same excitement and pro atmosphere as their European counterparts while tackling the famed race course of the Univest Grand Prix. Two distances are available 100k (60 miles) and 60k (40 miles).

Riders will receive official finishing times (Electronic Chip Timing by Premier Sports), on-course technical support, a post-ride meal and great raffle prizes totaling over $10,000. Commemorative jerseys will be available for purchase.
After the ride, the "Cyclos" may shower and then enjoy VIP hospitality with a post race meal while watching the finishing circuits of the pro race live and on the large giant screen TV coverage from 11:00 - 2:30. It's a full day of exciting cycling at its finest.

Cyclosportif Options
Pre-registered Cyclosportif (Cost $40): As in the past years, all pre-registered riders will receive the following:
UCI Quality Race Course, Feed Zones
Technical support
Electronic Chip Timing (NEW)
Hospitality tent near the straight after the first turn with live TV viewing.
Catered lunch.
Event t-shirt.
Post race meal and prize drawing.
Parking, shuttle and showers at the Souderton High School.
Commemorative merchandise available.
Day-of Registrants: Cyclosportif Riders ($40 plus $10 late fee):
Riders registering the day-of the event will receive the same quality course, feed zones and technical support as pre-registered participants as well as access to the same prizes. However they are not guaranteed to receive the official t-shirt, the lunch, or a finishing time. There is no guarantee that we will be able to accommodate all day of registrants. Read what Bicyling Magazine has to say about the Cyclosportif - a race for
all of us
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A special Cyclosportif jersey will be available for sale for $60 at the event.
Registration Information:
Advance registration is highly recommended! The combined field limit is 1500 riders. Only pre-registered riders are guaranteed to receive an event t-shirt, official finishing time, and lunch.
Register online at Online registration closes on Wednesday September 3, 2008.
Fee Structure:
60K (40 mile) - $40
100K (60 mile) - $40
Day-of registration will be subject to a $10 late fee. Day-of registrants are not guaranteed to receive the official t-shirt, the lunch, or a finishing time. There is no guarantee that we will be able to accommodate all day of registrants. Pre-registration is strongly encouraged.
Pre-event number pickup will be held on Thursday, September 4 from 5:00pm-7:00pm, and on Friday, September 5 from 12noon-7pm in at the Grundy Auditorium at the Penn Foundation at 807 Lawn Avenue, Sellersvile (get directions) We highly recommend picking up your number before the event!
Official Cyclosportif Event Parking is available at the Souderton Sr. High School. All participants should ride their bikes to the Start/Finish area or find additional parking near the race course. Please see directions below.
Day of Event number pick-up and registration will be held between 6:00-7:00am near the Pro men's Start/Finish line off of Main Street.
For more information, please contact
Riders must obey all the traffic laws and are required to wear helmets!
More Information Coming Soon

Online registration is available through

It will be interesting to see if the event has the electricity of a European event.

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