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Riders round a turn at Civic Center Park during stage seven of the 2014 USA Pro Challenge. Photograph by Doug Pensinger via Getty Images

On the Road Again

Can bands and booze help a new cycling race turn a profit?

By |

When CEO Shawn Hunter announced that the USA Pro Challenge wouldn’t be returning to Colorado in 2016, due to more than $20 million in losses over five years, cycling fans were shocked. They shouldn’t have been. Cycling races have struggled with financial issues for decades, partly because spectators aren’t charged to watch. This month, though, organizers will try to revamp the system with another multiday pro contest in the Centennial State. The Colorado Classic covers 313 miles in Colorado Springs, Breckenridge, and Denver over four days (August 10 to 13) with one essential addition: a ticketed music festival. For $35 to $45, spectators can enjoy live tunes and more than 200 booths featuring local food, drink, and cycling gear near the start and finish lines of Stage 3 and Stage 4 in RiNo. With a star-studded lineup featuring big names like Wilco, Death Cab for Cutie, and local indie-pop group Tennis, you’ll be sure to get your money’s worth.

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