Until I take my next trip – at which time, I’m not yet sure – I’ll be looking back on some travels I’ve taken in recent years. But I want to draw from the local well once again, with a local event. Also, forgive me for not posting last week. Two tight copywriting deadlines, JRS’s birthday and the first week of school made for a tough schedule to fit in my blogging.
For the past two years in late August, Colorado has hosted a professional cycling race called the USA Pro Challenge. Think of it as a mini Tour de France, with just six days of stages instead of three weeks’ worth. The cyclists who partcipate come from all over the world, but only Americans have won each of the three races each year. Not that I mind. I’m really not that much into pro cycling. I don’t know much about sprints, pelotons, and all that racing jargon. But when this race comes around, I do become a little interested.
Actually, I think I’m more interested in seeing the pristine natural scenery our state is blessed with, which is what I see when the stages hit the mountains. I never get tired of appreciating the beauty of Colorado, wherever they happen to go, whether it’s the rugged fourteeners near Independence Pass or the narrow winding river canyons.
It’s undoubtedly fun when the races have come to Golden, as they’ve done for the last two races. This year, they skipped our fair town. I don’t know why, other than the race organizers wanted to allow other cities to host a stage.
But when they did come last year, RAS and his friend and I headed to downtown and became part of the scene. Despite the crowds, we enjoyed the energy that radiated from this event. That is what I’m sharing below with my photos. Of course, we didn’t get to experience it close-up this time around. Sure, we could’ve headed to Denver, where they hold the last stage of the race every year. But we didn’t care THAT much about it.
Still, if it returns here next year, we’ll be right there to watch in person again.
George Hincapie, who’s now retired from pro racing, getting requests for his autograph.
Actor Patrick Dempsey (Dr. Derek Shepherd, aka McDreamy, on “Gray’s Anatomy”) came as cycling fan. Surprisingly, he didn’t get too much attention.
This is the most crowded I’ve ever seen Golden.
Time monitors, showing their appreciation to the town.
And they’re off!
The best view I had from my vantage point. And it only lasted about five seconds. Yep, it goes by very fast…surprise, surprise.