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Top World-Ranked cyclists from around the globe converge on Druid Hill Park, Baltimore, to race alongside regional and local cyclists at the 8th annual Charm City Cyclocross races this September 22nd and 23rd. With races featuring cyclists of every skillset, broken into categories based on their rankings and experience, both days of action will showcase local and global talent in a spectator-friendly festival environment.
Local bike shop, Twenty20 Cycling, located in the Hampden neighborhood of Baltimore, MD, along with its local racing team, C3-Athletes Serving Athletes, will host the event in the city's historic Druid Hill Park.
"[Charm City Cross] really does hold a special place in my heart, as does organizer Kris Auer," professional cyclist, Helen Wyman of Great Britain recently told Cyclocross Magazine.
At the time of racing Charm City Cross last year, Helen was ranked #1 in the world amongst Elite Women. Later that season, she went on to become the UK National Cyclocross Champion, and later finished 13th at the 2012 World Championships in Koksijde, Belgium. She enters this coming season ranked 4th in the world.
"If I could race [Charm City Cross] every weekend, I think I would. Again, the venue is amazing, the support staff at the event are second to none and Baltimore is a fantastic city," tells Wyman.
Other notable professional riders that are scheduled to appear in this year's Elite race fields are French rider Nicolas Bazin of Team Big-Mat who's currently ranked 34th in the world, 17th ranked Joyce Vanderbeken of Belgium, and local star Laura Van Gilder who races for Twenty20 Cycling's own C3-Athletes Serving Athletes team and is currently ranked 34th amongst the World's Elite Women.
The goal of this year's race weekend is to not only provide the highest level of competition throughout the Mid Atlantic, but to also expand its spectator experience for families, children, city residents, and cycling fans alike. Featuring local food venders, a beer garden serving premiere regional brews, a "Lil' Belgians" race course designed for children who want to ride like the pro's on a miniature-sized cyclocross course, as well as the excitement of the elite-level cyclocross racing, spectators can expect to find plenty of entertainment.
"At this year's race, we wanted to not only draw some of the top cyclocross racers in the world, but we also wanted to keep the event local and provide an experience that the entire city can enjoy," said Kris Auer, Twenty20 Cycling Owner and Race Organizer.
"We want them to have a good time and see what the fastest growing sport in cycling is really like."
Winners from each race category will be awarded with cash prizes as well as some other premiums provided by race sponsors, such as a frameset, courtesy of Fuji Bikes, for some race fields.
Cyclists interested in racing can register at www.bikereg.com. Spots are limited, so riders are encouraged to register early.