Three cities were bidding to get the USA Cyclocross National Championships for 2014 and 2015, three strong bids each with a different flavor and in the end, USA Cycling decided to award each with one year: Boulder, Colorado will host the 2014 Championships, Austin,Texas the 2015 and Asheville, North Carolina the 2016 USA Cyclocross National Championships.
We had three outstanding bids making the only logical choice to award all three communities,” said USA Cycling Managing Director of National Events Micah Rice in the press release announcing the decision. “The decision to award one-year contracts for the championships will also help foster cyclo-cross racing in three distinctively different parts of the country.”
Combined with the two years in Madison (Verona), Wisconsin, the Boulder venue will make it three years in a row with a possibility of very cold and inclement weather, with altitude thrown into the mix in 2014.
The 2014 championships will be held in Boulder’s Valmont Bike Park which includes a permanent cyclocross course and facilities that were used for the Boulder Cup at the end of October. The good news is that the top-notch venue which includes climbs, a tough staircase, long sand section was tested successfully in a UCI race bringing out an awesome crowd that Sunday in October. However, the venue is in the middle of town making parking a potential issue. The fans (and media) were distributed across multiple private parking lots, some quite far away, for Boulder Cup while the racers were crammed into a relative small area.
No UCI races were held in the next two venues though other major events were hosted successfully.
The 2015 championships will move to Austin’s Zilker Park. The beautiful 351-acre urban park should offer an exciting venue near the heart of downtown Austin, a thriving city with a strong cycling community recently rated one of the Top 20 Most Bike-Friendly Cities in America by Bicycling Magazine.
USA Cross Nationals will move to the southeast for the first time in 2016, to the historic Biltmore Estate in Asheville. The national championship course will be set amongst the 8,000 acres of America’s largest home, nestled in the mountains of western North Carolina.
The 2013 USA Cyclocross National Championships will be held at Badger Prairie Park, in Verona, Wisconsin, just outside of Madison for the second year in a row.