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Giordana bike classic returns July 30-Aug. 4

Cyclists from all over the world will be in Salisbury for the 2013 Giordana Crossroads Classic, organizers say.
Presented by Salisbury-Rowan County Convention and Visitors Bureau, the event is a six-day, six-race individual omnium and festival that will visit four North Carolina cities from July 30-Aug. 4: Mocksville, Concord, Salisbury and Statesville.
The Giordana Crossroads Classic will make its first stop in Salisbury on the third night of racing. The Sun & Ski Sports Salisbury Criterium, will take place in downtown Salisbury on Thursday evening, Aug. 1. This course features a 0.9 mile figure-eight loop. Many of the downtown restaurants extend their store hours to encourage the public to come downtown for an evening of fun.
“The city of Salisbury and Rowan County embrace the Crossroads Classic and its athletes, and provide a tremendous amount of support and energy, which continues an enthusiastic atmosphere for the rest of the six days of racing, two more of which will be in Salisbury and Rowan County,” race director Neal Boyd said in the news release.
On Saturday, Aug. 3, the participants will take to the roads of Rowan County with the High Rock Road Race. The final race of the six-day series will take place around City Park with the City Park Circuit Race on Sunday, Aug. 4.
A criterium-style bike race is a circuit race held on downtown streets or in a business park and is typically less than 1 mile in length with several tight corners. The 80-plus person “peloton,” or group of cyclists, will race between 25 and 40 miles, based on their category.
These courses are also closed to traffic, which allows the spectators to get up close and personal to the excitement of the race. They are able to witness the strategies of the teams as they draft off each other at speeds of more than 40 miles per hour, a breakaway from the main pack, sprint finishes and the occasional crash.
Some have even compared this type of race as “NASCAR on two wheels.”
The Sun & Ski Sports Salisbury Criterium will kick off at 6 p.m. with four amateur events. The races get faster as the sun sets, as the highlight of the evening, the Pro, 1, 2 race, starts at 9 p.m. The pro event will feature national teams such as BMC Development, Smart Stop p/b Mountain Khakis and Giordana-Clif Bar. Racers will have to take chances to get out in front, while hitting speeds of up to 45 miles per hour.
The races are free to the public as spectators.
The course start/finish will be on Main Street across from the courthouse, and the cyclists will race counter-clockwise Main Street, Cemetery Street, Jackson Street, Kerr Street, Main Street, Council Street, Lee Street, Liberty Street and finish on Main Street.
For maps of the race course and more information on the event, check out www.crossroadscyclingclassic.com
Event schedule for Thursday, Aug. 1:
• 5 p.m. – street closure

• 6 p.m – women’s race
• 6:45 p.m. – Cat 4/5 amateur race
• 7:25 p.m. – masters 40+ race

• 7:25 p.m. – masters 50+ race
• 8:10 p.m. – Cat 3 amateur race
• 9 p.m. – feature professional race

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