Top men's & women's pro cycling teams will light up the Alabama night at the NRC event that benefits local American Cancer Society chapter
Anniston, Alabama - Bicycles will speed through the streets of Anniston, Alabama on Saturday, April 17th. Sandwiched on a weekend between an Indy car race and a NASCAR Talladega Superspeedway event, hundreds of cyclists and thousands of boisterous spectators will unleash their passion for speed when the Sunny King Criterium pedals for the eighth time. Some of cycling's fastest men's and women's professional teams sporting international rosters will engage in high-speed hi-jinks under the lights with entry fees being donated to Relay For Life, a local chapter of the American Cancer Society. The National Racing Calendar (NRC) event has donated over $50,000 to the charity since 2005.
The men's and women's professional events headline a full day of bike racing that commences at 10 AM CT with juniors (ages 10-14 and 15-18) and continues with amateur races open to USA Cycling-licensed cyclists. The one-hour women's pro race is scheduled to start at 6:20 PM CT and the 60-lap men's pro event will roll off at 7:30 PM CT. Racers will complete laps around the flat four-corner, .7-mile rectangular downtown circuit that finishes with a slight uphill rise.
For the first time, cycling fans around the globe will be able to watch all the races live on the Sunny King Criterium website, www.sunnykingcriterium.com. Five cameras along the course will capture the unpredictable action of NRC crit racing, including the exhilarating 40-mile-an-hour, shoulder-to-shoulder sprint finishes. Last year's men's winner, Karl Menzies, will be back to defend his title with full support from his United Healthcare presented by Maxxis team. Menzies will have his work cut out for himself as Ivan Dominguez, a stage winner at the Amgen Tour of California, and 2007 Sunny King winner Frank Travieso, joined by their equally explosive teammates Luis Amaran and Anibal Borrajo, will represent a powerhouse Jamis/Sutter Home presented by Colavita lineup. Others expected to animate the race include Alessandro Bazzanna and Ken Kersten, who will fly the flag for Fly V Australia and the newly formed Bahati Foundation outfit led by former U.S. Pro National Criterium champion Rahsaan Bahati. Team Type 1 and Kenda presented by Geargrinder are also sending riders.
Colavita presented by Cooking Light, Team TIBCO, Team Vera Bradley Foundation and Team Kenda highlight the teams expected to make the women's pro race dynamic.
"We are pleased to again welcome top professional and amateur competitors to Sunny King for world class bicycle racing in historic downtown Anniston. The men and women pros never fail to put on a thrilling show for the spectators who turn up each year in droves. We hope that sponsors and cycling fans unable to join us in-person will tune in to catch the racing action live on our website," said Sunny King Criterium race director Mike Poe.
The next day, many of the professionals will compete in the 65-mile Foothills Classic Road Race, which unfolds over rolling to hilly terrain in nearby Piedmont. Amateur races at a distance of 50 miles will also be staged. Information is available at www.foothillsroadrace.com.
The Alabama Department of Tourism & Travel has selected the Sunny King Criterium as a Top 10 event for the state of Alabama for 2010. In addition to being an NRC event, the race is part of the Southeast Women's Cycling Series, Alabama Cycling Association Points Series and The Lance Armstrong Junior Olympic Road Series. Additional information, including how to register, is available at www.sunnykingcriterium.com.