01 August 2013

2013 USA Pro Challenge in Colorado

2013 USA Pro Challenge, August 19-25, 2013
It's back!

Follow the tour from the beautiful mountain town of Aspen, Colorado to the state capital of Denver, Colorado. USA!

The USA Pro Challenge returns for a third year with a more condensed route sure to please riders from around the world. Some of the best ProTour and Continental teams will meet to compete in 7 stages across the Rocky Mountains and into the state capital of Denver, Colorado.

This tour of Colorado in 2013 begins in Aspen, features a time trial in Vail and finishes with a circuit race in Denver, Colorado. Host Cities this year include: Aspen, Snowmass, Breckenridge, Steamboat Springs, Beaver Creek, Vail, Loveland, Fort Collins, and Denver. There will certainly be something for everyone. The weekend stages (6 & 7) in Loveland-Fort Collins and Denver are sure to have big fan turn-out and lots of options for race viewing.

There is a big pro race on the roads of Colorado in August - come see the race!
The 2013 Host Cities of the USA Pro Challenge stage race:
Monday, August 19,  Stage 1: Aspen/Snowmass Circuit
Tuesday, August 20,  Stage 2: Aspen - Breckenridge
Wednesday, August 21, Stage 3: Breckenridge - Steamboat Springs
Thursday, August 22, Stage 4: Steamboat Springs - Beaver Creek
Friday, Augugust 23, Stage 5: ITT Vail Time Trial
Saturday, August 24, Stage 6: Loveland - Fort Collins
Sunday, August 25, Stage 7: Denver Circuit

Fans attending the Festival in Breckenridge in 2011
  • 7 day stage race
  • 2 circuit races, 1 or 2 mountain top finishes, 1 high altitude time trial
  • Twitter @USAProChallenge  #USAPro2013 (the race) #ProChallenge (the event ride)
  • Facebook page USA Pro Cycling Challenge
  • Official Race Website http://www.usaprocyclingchallenge.com/
  • Email: info@usaprocyclingchallenge.com
  • USA Pro Challenge Experience event ride in Fort Collins register
  • USA Pro Challenge 9K/5K event run in Denver register
  • VIP buy tickets
  • Volunteer sign-up
USA Pro Cycling:  Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  YouTube

Fans near the sign-in stage at the USA Pro Challenge in Breckenridge, 2012.  Photo by Karen at Pedal Dancer
ROUTE MAPS: 2013 USA Pro Challenge route maps, profiles and descriptions, By Pedal Dancer
TEAMS: Teams for 2013 USA Pro Challenge announced, By Pedal Dancer

Location of Colorado in the U.S.A.
Location of Host Cities in the State of Colorado for the 2013 USA Pro Challenge. Map by Karen at PedalDancer®


Colorado not only has a fit and active population, the state has a very knowledgeable fan base who understand cycling. Coloradoans routinely enjoy a variety of outdoor sports and have embraced the USA Pro Challenge now in it's third year. I began the tradition in year-one of offering tips to fans on seeing the pro race in Colorado, so I will continue offering information, hoping to encourage new fans each year as well as making race day planning that much easier for experienced fans. Enjoy the race!

Cycling Fans on Autograph Alley in Steamboat Springs in 2011.  ©Photo by Karen at PedalDancer®

PEDAL DANCER FAN GUIDES - USA Pro Challenge race day planning, travel guides, city special events, route maps and profiles, road closures, and stage start and finish times.

I have chased pro races for 13 years on the Continent and in Europe. I am now granted the thrill to be Media at some of the races but am always in touch with my roots as a fan. I share with you my inside tips on how to see and enjoy a professional cycling race. My love of travel, maps, photographs and human interest blend with the love of any bike. Welcome and enjoy the ride! (About Pedal Dancer®)

USA Pro Challenge in Aspen and Snowmass
USA Pro Challenge in Breckenridge (Part 1)
How & Where to Watch the USA Pro in Breckenridge (Part 2)
USA Pro Challenge in Steamboat Springs
USA Pro Challenge in Beaver Creek
USA Pro Challenge in Vail
USA Pro Challenge in Loveland and Fort Collins
USA Pro Challenge in Fort Collins
USA Pro Challenge in Denver

Race spectators in Beaver Creek, 2012. ©Photo by Karen at PedalDancer®
My brief recommendations for fans for how and where to see the race in 2013, include:
  1. Take a 3-day holiday (Sat-Tues) in Aspen to see the riders warm up (get out and ride your bike on the same road as the pros, as they train on Saturday and Sunday), see the mechanics set-up the bikes, be in the audience for the pre-race press conference, attend the events in the city of Aspen or Snowmass Village, go hiking near the Maroon Bells, fish in the gold medal rivers nearby and then watch the pro teams race Stage 1 (Monday) and Stage 2 (Tuesday).
  2. Spend an overnight in Breckenridge; you will see the finish of Stage 2 (Tuesday) and the start of Stage 3 (Wednesday). When you are not watching the race - ride your own bike from Breckenridge to Frisco, continue to the top of Vail Pass; kayak or canoe on Lake Dillon (although the water is low this year); mountain bike on the local trails, enjoy the town events in the town of Breckenridge.
  3. Spend an overnight (Wednesday night) in Steamboat Springs to see the finish of Stage 3 and the start of Stage 4, this will be a good town to gather autographs and photos of your favorite riders. Two years ago Rabbit Ears Pass was a wild scene on race day and Honey Stinger (based in town) had a fun party post stage finish. The VIP tent in Steamboat was one of the best.
  4. Last year watching the finish into the ski village of Beaver Creek was excellent and the concert after was awesome, so don't write off Beaver Creek. You could always stay over in Eagle county and be right where you need to be when the individual time trial begins the next day in Vail.
  5. Ride your bike up Vail Pass to watch the Individual Time Trial of Stage 5 with the mass of fans, (requires a Friday off of work but well worth it!). It was hot on that mountain 2 years ago but as a fan, it was a great place with hours of entertainment as the riders rode past individually.
  6. Ride part of Stage 6 on Saturday and enjoy the activities in the cities of Loveland or Fort Collins. The crowds should be big.
  7. Gather a group of friends on Sunday and go anywhere along the route in Denver to watch the laps, (however, if Mario Cipollini returns to the VIP tent in Denver again this year, then I would just go there). Also be sure to take in a local brew and ride your own bike to the race for easy parking!
Race spectators in Telluride, 2012.  ©Photo by Karen at PedalDancer®
Double it up this year (see 2 Stages in the same city)
Aspen: Stage 1 Start & Finish  + Stage 2 Start
Breckenridge: Stage 2 Finish + Stage 3 Start
Steamboat Springs: Stage 3 Finish + Stage 4 Start
Beaver Creek/Vail: Stage 4 Finish + Stage 5 Start

See a start & finish on the same day (by driving)
Stage 2 see the Start in Aspen + the Finish in Breckenridge
Stage 4 see the Start in Steamboat Springs + the Finish in Breckenridge
Stage 6 see the Start in Loveland + the Finish in Fort Collins

See a mountain top finish (ride your bike to the top)
Stage 4 Finish at Beaver Creek Resort (it is short but it counts)
Stage 5 Vail Pass (ITT!)

Be on a mountain pass mid-way in the stage (great for everyone)
Stage 2 Independence Pass - 12,095 ft (3,687 m)
Stage 2 Hoosier Pass - 11,542 ft (3,518 m)
Stage 3 Swan Mountain - 10,796 ft (3291 m)
Stage 3 Rabbit Ears Pass - 9,426 ft (2,873 m)
Stage 4 Bachelor Gulch - 11,440 ft (3,490 m)
*Or be at the wall in Glen Haven on Stage 6 - steep! (max grade 12.5%)

You can't go wrong, just get out and make your own experience! 
©Photo by Laurie Valaer for Pedal Dancer

More Information at: USA PRO CHALLENGE or the official race website at:  USA Pro Challenge Website. Apparently we can now drop the Cycling in the long name and just call it the USA Pro Challenge. #USAPro2013