Tour of Utah to return to Park City
Last year’s enthusiasm and fan support was not lost on the organizers of the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah bicycle race.
This year will mark the 10th edition of the race, and for the second year in a row, Park City has been selected to host the race’s final stage, Stage Six, on Sunday, Aug. 11.
Last year, an estimated 20-25,000 fans lined Main Street to watch the racers cross the finish line, prompting Tour officials to award the final stage to Park City again in 2013.
"It’s the fans," Todd Hageman, course director for the Tour, said. "There’s a lot of enthusiasm in Park City for the Tour of Utah. We’ve always been welcomed with open arms."
Hageman said the start of this year’s race should add even more excitement to the event.
"The big change this year is that we’re moving down south, starting in Cedar City," he said. "We’ll be touching the edges of Bryce Canyon and Cedar Breaks."
From there, the race will head north, making stops in Torrey, Payson and Salt Lake City, among other communities.
About 17 teams will take part in this year’s event, consisting of about 125 to 135 total riders.
According to Hageman, last year’s race had a $14 million economic impact on the state, with about 200,000 people attending at least one stage of the race.
Though it’s been a tumultuous year in the world of cycling, Hageman said he doesn’t anticipate Lance Armstrong’s recent doping confession to have an impact on this year’s race, saying that the culture of the sport has changed over the last decade.
"It doesn’t really affect the Tour of Utah," he said. "(Armstrong’s doping culture) was a generation ago."
The race will start on Tuesday, Aug. 6, and will end on Sunday, Aug. 11.
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Cold, blustery weather made paddle boarding a daunting task on Saturday, but a handful of die-hard racers still competed at the Park City SUP Festival.